There's two forms of art talent that I can think of, being able to copy what you see, and being able to draw from imagination. If there is a third, it's using color.
Being able to copy exactly has been with me for a long time, but I've gotten better at it since I was 15 or so.
I've been working on drawing from imagination and it's far harder. It's not bad to use a reference when you draw, and it's incredibly helpful to have a reference, but drawing from imagination helps you invent things. It also helps when you have a reference, so you aren't a "slave to your reference." Meaning, you can draw your reference with more gesture, from a different angle, or just with more style.
Here's what I can do without a reference, probably my best example:
The Punishment Cube