I've been playing for somewhere almost a year now, and for the last few months have felt my improvement begin to stagnate. The more I learn, the more I realize that I'd be more capable if I used a pick, but for some reason, every time I try it, I just don't seem to get anywhere. Can anyone tell me, if you think it'll help, what you went through to learn how to use a pick? I wanted to try and figure out pinch harmonics, but I can't really do that with just a thumb for strumming. Thanks folks.

I've got an Ibanez Gio Mikro paired with a Crate GX-20M amp.
If how to hold the pick is what you're asking, I can tell you how I do it.

If you make the OK sign with your picking hand, then overlap your thumb over the first knuckle of the pointer finger, then put the pick between those two fingers, that's how I do it.

It helped me improve alternate picking speed a lot and it makes it easy to tilt your finger enough to hit harmonics.
i literally just hold the pic between my finger and thumb and have it tilted a bit, you'll have to get good at using a pic before beginning to think about pinchs. you need to get to the stage when a pick is the most natural thing to hold, and ot do pinchs you have to change the way you hold it. So get good with the pick first, and remeber just keep practising and dont get stressed out.
Quote by boreamor
Ah very good point. Charlie__flynn, you've out smarted me


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Good advice. I'm doing a lot of back tracking lately to sharpen what I know, so this is good. The details still get me. Do I pluck the string with the very point of the pick? What do I do when I want to strum up-down-up-down on a sting? Self-learning has its' apparent drawbacks. :p
u just put more pressure on your index finger so it kinda flicks,then allow ur index to go back, or just pivot ur wrist and shkae ur hand up and down, watch vids of people playing on youtube
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Taking an Internet break for a while, will come on when I can.
There's a two and three fingered grip. One's more common than the other.

I use three, but that's because I lost the pick when playing with two.
Pinch Harmonics are all about luck. The more you practice them, the luckier you get.
It's almost as if my pick gets stuck on the string. Am I on the right track if I'm looking for that sweet spot where I'm not too far or too close to the string?
pinch harmonics are easy if you hold your pick right. make an okay sign with your hand, now put the pic in between your index and thumb. trick now is too have a little angle. ie this diagram

.....................\ pick (the backslash) a little less than that is what you want
------------------------------------------ string

now all you have to do to hit a pinch harmonic is follow through the stroke and dig into the string with your thumb in the right place on the string. try to do them on the 7th fret of the middle two strings at first. easiest place. once you get that, try different frets then move on to the other strings.
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Pinch harmonics are a great technique to learn, but honestly don't worry about em' yet. Get yourself comfortable with holding a pick first, then move on to pinches.

Try patterns like (open strings):
E d a g d b g e
e g b d g a d E

Etc. Also, aside from the more complex fingerstyle songs, try practicing the riffs you already know with a pick. Get to the point where it's comfortable and intuitive. Then move on to pinches. You'll save yourself a lot of frustration and bad habits that way.
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Woooow I've come a long way. Sorry for the bump. Delete if you want.

I just... wow. This is so cool to look back and see where I was and where I am now. I can't believe I made a thread on here asking how to use a pick.

Now I have a whole room filled with instruments. **** yeah.