It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!
I agree that it is no sin to trace but learning to draw is critical because it is learning to see. It is also extremely enjoyable, like meditation. I have never understood why somebody who wants to make art would consider actual drawing to be something to be avoided. Sketch, sketch, sketch. The understanding that you acquire will improve your art in a way that tracing never can.