Drawing to learn DRAWING by Marvin Bartel 

AS OF JUNE 29, 2020

is no longer available


I hope to offer a new edition, but cannot say when. This page will give information as it becomes available.



If you ordered one in the past, the name of the discontinued .pdf file is
(in case you need to search your computer for the file)

The password you received by email when you ordered it will be needed. It should still work.



Marvin Bartel, Ed.D. is an artist, art educator, and art teacher.

Author Biography

Art teaching HOME page

Artwork HOME page


Some of the free Web Pages

How to Teach Children to Draw

What Skills are Needed to Draw Everything?

Art Rituals in the Classroom
reviews in Learner's Edge

The Secrets of Generating Art Ideas

Creativity Killers

How to Draw an Orchid

"I don't know Prof. Bartel, of Goshen College, but he's teaching me to draw through his website for art educators."  ---Elaine L.
retrieved 6-17-10,
from All Things Metal Clay

The following is a November 27, 2010, email from a purchaser.

Thanks so much for this. I am currently in teacher's college in . . . visual arts and I pour over your site daily! I love the way you teach - I had the privilege of having great teachers as a kid and your approach reminds me very much of their method...it really made me take joy in creating art as a kid and I want to share that with my students too.

Regards, MM

See this
Art Education HOME page
to see the teaching methods for yourself .


Contact me by email if you have any questions

Back to bartelart.com home page      Art and Learning to Think and Feel with many essays and ideas
on learning art.
Check out Learning to Throw - an on line tutorial on making pottery by the same author (a free online tutorial).

All rights reserved.  Marvin Bartel.  This page was updated on June 11, 2010

Why do we draw?-- This is page 40 from Drawing to Learn DRAWING by Marvin Bartel © 2010

Drawing is an instinct we were all born with. We have to be taught to read and write, but we are born with the ability to learn to draw. Drawing is so important that we learn it without a teacher. Drawing is so essential for our survival and success that toddlers learn to draw before they begin first grade. Here are some of the many ways that drawing helps us in our lives.

1. We need drawings to figure out things that we are thinking about. Drawing makes us smarter. When I make something, I often do several drawings to see how it should look or it figure out if it will even work.  What would happen if architects, designers, and inventors did not draw first? Many math problems are much easier if you draw them first.

2. Inventors do lots of drawing to help them imagine better ideas. Drawing helps us
become more creative and successful. I have one invention that I have been drawing
and changing and improving for the last 40 years. Most inventions have not yet been
invented. Drawing will help us discover them.

3. Drawing makes us surer of ourselves, more confident, and less afraid to make mistakes.
Drawing teaches us that many mistakes can be fixed and many mistakes are good
because they help us discover new ideas.

4. Drawing teaches us how to think better because when we draw our mind is always
thinking about new ways to draw things. This makes us grow more thinking neurons and
we get smarter.

5. Drawing helps us notice and see more. After you draw something, it is harder to forget
how it looks. If you make a very careful drawing from a real fish, you will notice all the
parts of the fish. If you want to learn all the parts of anything, there is no better way to
learn them. Without drawing it, you could easily miss some very important part.

6. Drawing helps us explain things and give instructions. It is often much easier to
understand something from a drawing than from words. Drawings are much better than
words when you do not know the language and you looking for the bathroom. Maps are
drawings that tell us about the world and keep us from getting lost. Drawing a chart or a
graph helps us make comparisons and choices. It makes things easier to remember.

7. Drawing helps us keep records, keep track of things, and record history as it happens.

8. Drawing is wonderful way to help us tell stories and jokes.

9. Drawing is good way to make an argument. We often see drawings in the newspaper
that exaggerate something to make a point about politics. Drawings often are used in
advertising to try to convince us to buy something.

10. Drawings are often used to keep us safe. Warning signs use drawings to remind us what
might happen and that we need to be careful.

11. Drawing is used to make things more beautiful. Like music, they can lift our spirits.

12. Drawing can remind us of bad and good things that happen and bad and good things
that people do. This can make us into better people if we learn from these drawings.

13. Drawings, symbols, and designs are used in churches, mosques, synagogues and
special places to help give meaning to ideas and feelings that are often too hard to put
into words.

14. Like dancing and singing, drawings and other artworks help us express our feelings and
our dreams. Drawing helps us celebrate, express joy and sadness, and show our
feelings to each other and for each other.

All Rights Reserved © 2010 Marvin Bartel  Contact for permission to copy or publish.
Any online references to this page or quotation from this page must include a link to this page.


Marvin Bartel, Emeritus Professor of Art, Goshen College, was a public school, college, and university art teacher for over 40 years. For over 30 years he taught methods of learning art in college level courses for art teachers and supervised apprentice art teachers. Bartel earned a doctorate in art education at the University of Kansas. He is a lifelong studio artist, and has exhibited in many regional, national, and international exhibitions.

More biographical information
Art and Learning to Think & Feel -- Dedicated to Leaving NO MIND BEHIND