How to Draw a Portrait – Drawing Academy

The Step-by-Step Guide on How to Draw a Portrait

By Vladimir London

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London
In this script, you will discover the step by step process of how to draw a head in the three-quarters view .
It is written and illustrated by Vladimir London, internationally published author and the founder of Drawing Academy .


In the Drawing Academy class, students much ask me how to draw a portrait so it looks realistic. I besides regularly receive portrayal drawings for review that have coarse mistakes like misplaced facial features, faulty proportions, improper perspective, and indeed on. such mistakes happen because of :

  • Not knowing or not following constructive drawing principles
  • Ignoring human head proportions
  • Knowledge gaps in a human anatomy.

The biggest challenge in drawing portraits arrives from the misconception of how art is created – students draw not what they know, but copy what they see. This leads to inevitable mistakes .
To explain why the principle “ Draw What You Know, not What You See ” is important, I ’ ll give you an example. When drawing from life, art students are doing their best to depict eyes, nose and mouth as they see it on a model, forget, however, the overall construction of the head. It is like decorating walls before building a sign of the zodiac .
To “ build ” a head in portrayal drawing requires much more than plainly copying what you see. And the necessity know-how merely comes with all-important cognition. You merely won ’ triiodothyronine see the correctness of proportions if you don ’ thymine know what those proportions are .
so, in this series of articles, I will share with you the in-depth bit-by-bit know-how of portrait pull as it ’ mho teach in one of the World ’ second best art institutions – Repin Academy in St. Petersburg, Russia. This process is besides described in my koran “ How to Draw a Portrait in the Three Quarters View ” available on Amazon .
here ’ s how the finishes sketch looks. You will be able to draw similar portraits by the end of this practice should you follow closely my instructions .
How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London

This flying pull back was done in crimson pastel pencil ; however, feel absolve to use any drawing average of your choice. It is not about color, but constructive lottery principles, rules of position, head proportions and anatomy, which won ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate change whether you draw in graphite pencil, charcoal or with your feel on sand .

How to Draw a Portrait in the Three Quarters View

Before drawing begins

I would suggest getting a exemplary or drawing a self-portrait looking in a mirror .
first gear, analyze the head, chose the see angle, and decide on the artwork size and layout. Fix paper to a drawing board and get your pencil sharpened .

1. First step

Begin with measuring the main proportion of the model ’ s question – its width-to-height proportion using a pencil or by eye. many art students ask me how to measure with a pencil ; to answer, I created this article – //
How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London This proportion varies depending on the opinion angle. Make indisputable to get it ampere accurate as you can .
When you have this proportion measured, decide on a composing of your future portrait – how big the question would be and where on paper it will be located .
Mark four strokes – the top, bottom a well as the left and right edges of the head. Make surely there is enough space in presence of the head – “ nose room ” and the head is not excessively stopping point to the top boundary of paper. It is besides good to have more space below the mind than above .
Train your eyes by marking those edges freehand and, if necessary, double-check the chief proportion using a pencil .

2. Dividing the face into three parts

The future step requires a know-how of the universal proportion of the face. All adult faces regardless of individual appearances contribution the lapp proportion – the distance between the hair-root agate line and the bottom edge of the kuki can be divided in three equal parts :

  1. From the hair-root line to the eyebrow line
  2. From the eyebrow line to the base of the nose
  3. From the base of the nose to the bottom of the chin.

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London Observe on the model where the hair-root line is intended by nature and notice this line on the string. Divide the distance from that cable to the bottom of the head into three peer parts by eye or using a pencil as a measure stick. Do it angstrom accurate as you can ; precise placement of these three parts will help you in placing facial features correctly .
If the model ’ second head is on the lapp tied as yours, you would see those three lines horizontal. When the model is located higher than a spectator, lines will be curved up. The opposite is besides true – lines will be curved down when a model ’ mho head is located lower. The curvature depends on the view lean .
To keep things simple for this drill, we draw a portrait at our eye-level .

3. Placing the eye-line

The follow step comes from the know-how – this proportion is not measured on a model ’ s head, it is universal for all portraits – the eye-line divides the acme of the head in half .
so, we can place the eye-line with confidence, marking it either freehand or using a pencil to measure where the middle of the forefront is .
This horizontal line, of course, will be located below the eyebrow credit line that we marked in the former step .
How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London I have to make a disavowal that the eye-line can be tilted or curved depending on a see angle. In such case, you need to keep in heed that distances of this proportion could be foreshortened in perspective and the peak border of the head in your draw might not correspond to the actual top point of the model ’ randomness head. so, if we see a head from above, the eye-line would be curved downward and appear lower than the actual center point between the top and bottom marks of the mind .
If the paragraph above sounds a moment jumble, think of a cylinder seen from above in position and imagine how its center tune curves downward and where it is located in relative to the cylinder ’ sulfur top and bottomland edges. To guide you through the challenging topic of how to draw in position, I created this rid video moral – //

4. Base of the skull and edge of the cheekbone

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London Location the plane of the skull base will help us to connect the head, neck and shoulders correctly. This plane is on the like level as the base of the nose, which besides corresponds to the bottom edge of the cheekbone. This tied is marked in red channel .

5. Lower part of the cranium

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London In this step we mark the location of the lower separate of the cranium. Although it might be hidden by retentive hairs or a grandiloquent collar we do it using one of the constructive withdraw principles – drawing objects as if they are diaphanous .

6. Locating the eyebrow

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London The eyebrow ’ second border is an important score of the head. This virtual line marks the steer ’ south planes, separating the side from the side of the head. This edge besides serves as a border between tonic values of light and tad .
The eyebrow ’ randomness edge location depends on the angle of opinion. It has to be measured on the model by comparing distances “ A ” and “ B ” .
late on, this border will besides help us to determine the position of the ear .

7. Defining contours of the face

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London Contours of the face are very important virtual lines that help to define portrayal ’ mho likeness .
A contour should not be confused with an delineate. In the guide below, contours of cheekbones and jawlines are marked as contours. These lines are individual ; angles of which have to be measured on the model. Contours here describe the human body of the model ’ mho face .

8. Indicating the top edge of the ear

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London Unlike in previous step, where contour of the side are individual, location of the top border of the ear is universal for all portraits. This edge is on the lapp charge as the eyebrows line. To mark the peak of the ear, we extend the eyebrows line horizontally towards backside of the read/write head .

9. How to place the ear correctly

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London As the Drawing Academy tutor, I much receive for review portrayal drawings that have one common error – a miss-located auricle. To avoid such a junior mistake you need to know the postdate rules :

  • The top of an ear is on the same level as the line of eyebrows.
  • The bottom edge of an ear is on the same level as the base of the nose.
  • The distances from the edge of the eyebrows to the ear and to the middle of the face are equal (marked by “C” in green). In perspective, these distances will be foreshortened. This is the same distance as between the hair-roots and the eyebrows line, the eyebrows and the base of the nose, and the base of the nose and the chin (marked by “C” in red).
  • The line where an ear connects to the head is not vertical but tilted backward (blue line).

10. Placing the pit of the neck

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London Another common mistake art students make is forgetting about the neck and drawing it as an reconsideration when the headway is amply drawn. It is about impossible to draw credible looking portraits from life or imagination without the cognition of a lead and shoulders anatomy .
Let ’ s indicate an important landmark of the portrayal – the pit of the neck. It is located between two collarbones good above the sternum .
The distance from the kuki to the hell of the neck is equal to the one-third proportion of the grimace ( marked by “ C ” in loss ) .

11. Why sternocleidomastoid muscle is important in portrait drawing

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London The muscleman with a identical retentive name, sternocleidomastoid, is an significant landmark when it comes to drawing a neck. It connects the acme part of sternum ( sternum ) and clavicle ( clavicle ) with the base of the skull called mastoid – the process of the skull positioned merely behind the ear .
We draw this brawn diagonally. In drawing, this muscle not merely defines the shape of the neck but besides separates its frontal function from the side plane .

12. Trapezium

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London The trapezium is another crucial brawn that defines the form of the rear of the neck .
There is one point you need to define when drawing a neck in the three quarters view – the home where the neck changes into the angle of trapezium. This detail is on the same level as the bottom edge of the kuki ; see the scatter line on the drawing below .

13. Outlines of the neck and collarbones

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London Following the constructive draw principles, we draw not what we see, but what we know. This fully applies to collarbones, which can be covered by model ’ randomness dress .
In perspective, the axes of collarbones appear foreshortened and tilted. The pair of collarbones is curved like a cupid ’ south bow or a stretch duplicate “ S ”. It connects the sternum with the shoulder blades .
Outlines of the neck are person and you have to observe its form on the mannequin .
It is a technical border on to draw shoulders as one continuous line from one shoulder to another, making sure they are on the lapp level and look natural .

14. Drawing the base of the neck

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London When chief outlines and contours of the neck in position, we can mark the base of the neck. It has a circular form and in perspective appears as a careen egg-shaped. This ellipse goes through the top copulate of rib and defines the width of the neck at its base. This ellipse besides marks the size of the top of the ribcage .
The base of the neck is an important contour because it separates vertical planes of the neck from more horizontal surfaces of the shoulders. As such, it serves as a surround between light and shaded areas of those surfaces .

15. Rendering the main shades of the portrait

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London So far, we do not draw any facial features or minor details. alternatively, we build a solid construction of the question in drawing. This will help us to avoid mistakes and misplacements when it comes to drawing facial features. Drawing eyes, mouth, nose, etc. at this stage is like decorating the walls before building a theater .
Although this is a very general outline of the head, it is a time to block-in the independent shades of the portrayal .
Use very idle pencil press to render shade areas of the head and neck .

16. Drawing outlines of the eyebrow

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London Check model ’ s brow and eyebrow outline – it will be individual to every person .
Notice how this delineate is protruding in front of the brow – this distance is indicated in blue lines on the drawing below .
The eyebrow draft has its feature angle ( marked in crimson lines ) .

17. Outlines of the cheekbone

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London We move down along the shape of the face, this time paying attention to the individual contour of the cheekbone .
once again, check this delineate on the model ; pay care how far it bends and compare to the outline of the eyebrow. normally, the eyebrow would be extended forth a sting more than the sketch of the cheekbone .
The eye socket outline depicted in the former step continues downwards with the cheekbone outline .
You can besides need to check the commission of the line that goes towards the lower jaw ( indicated in green on the drawing below ) .

18. Parallel contours of the chin

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London Usually, female kuki is less pronounce than a male one ; however, both male and female jaws have characteristic direction of outlines that can be marked in two parallel lines, which are besides parallel to the line of the back of the head ( marked in bolshevik ) .

19. Drawing the eyebrow curve

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London In a human head, the frame between the cranial depart of the skull, which protects the brain, and the facial character of the skull can be indicated by a swerve virtual channel that goes through the eyebrows and then sloped towards the auricle channel .
This virtual curved line helps to build by rights the bridge of eyebrows, which is not square, but bent down .

20. Indicating the plane under the eyebrows

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London With the arch credit line of eyebrows defined, we can caw block shaded area below it. In most cases, the reservoir of light is above a model ’ randomness head, therefore it will be a shadow under eyebrows. so, we mark this shade in light spirit applying very faint pencil imperativeness .
As you see, we are inactive defining big masses without any care to facial features like eyes, intrude and sass. Drawing such facial features before the independent form of the head is build proficiently is like decorating walls of a house that so far to be constructed. This sequence will help you to ensure correct proportions of the portrayal and will result in greater likeness when we do the perch of the portrait .

21. Defining the cheekbones curve

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London The cheekbones curve defines another significant shape of the face. It bends downward from one cheekbone to another, with its lowest point at the base of the nose .
This virtual lineage is the boundary line between the frontal contribution of the cheekbones and the upper jaw section .
A portrayal artist can simply keep this production line in mind rather than actually draw it. however, as a separate of the drumhead construction, this line helps to “ build ” the portrait geometrically discipline and harmonious .

22. Blocking the shade beneath the cheekbones’ curve

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London As mentioned before, the cheekbones curve separates two surfaces of the side. The surface of cheekbones above that lineage is facing the source of light and therefore will appear lighter than the surface below .
To indicate this difference in tonal values, we shade in very light pencil strokes the dark area correct below the cheekbones curl .
There is no indigence to worry about accurate tonal measure of this plane correctly now. All we want from this step is to show that two planes on both sides of the cheekbones curve have different tonic values. We will fine-tune the claim tonal values belated on in this example .

23. Drawing the central line of the face

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London A virtual wrinkle that goes precisely in the in-between of a face from the very top of the brow to the bottom of the kuki is one of the most significant landmarks of every homo face. It serves as the axis of isotropy and is used to balance all facial features at the same distances from that lineage .
Because the scent is located in front of this tune, we can break the argumentation or mark it very thinly within the intrude area, so it would not interfere with lines of the nose later .
many drawing books and tutorials suggest drawing a central line of the face much earlier in a portrayal disembowel. The reason why we do it nowadays is because it is much easier, specially for beginners, to mark this lineage with preciseness when the overall structure of the head is in place .
I want to point once again that the sequence of steps is a personal preference and some artists do not draw all virtual lines at all, keeping them in judgment rather .

24. Marking contours of the eyebrows’ corners

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London With the cardinal facial lineage in place, we can continue by drawing smaller details making sure that facial features are harmonious in relative to that line .
The form of eyebrows is individual and you need to observe its quality on the model first .
The bridge of the nose is bordering with the eyebrows corners, so we need to portray its width and lean.

25. Marking the upper eyelids’ contours

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London With the inner corners of eyebrows in space we can now mark the curvature of the bridge of the nose. This course is a helpful landmark, which normally coincides with the level of the upper eyelids contours. Because every front is person, you need to check this level on the model and adjust the drawing if required .
harmonious features like eyelids have to draw in pairs, making sure they are located on the same virtual horizontal line and have like curvature. This helps to avoid the mistake of drawing one eye higher or lower than the other .

26. Shading the area above the upper eyelids

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London The area below eyebrows has dark tones than upper eyelids. so, we could build up tonal values to block the area above the eyes .
Go light with rendering upper eyelids. We will come back to darken these tonal values to required depth later on. It is a well technique to build tones gradually. A adept direction of applying pencil strokes is along object ’ second contour. besides, if you are drawing in graphite pencil, smudging pencil marks is a big no-no. I will explain why late .

27. Marking the corners of the eyes

Depicting eyes with preciseness is a critical step in portrayal puff. It is not an easy tax for beginners. I often receive portrayal drawings for review with eyes that are excessively conclude to each other or not harmonious .
To pinpoint the claim localization of eyes in a portrait lottery, you can use the succeed rules :

  1. The distance between well-positioned eyes is equal to the length of one eye.
  2. Both eyes must be on the same level, which is the horizontal line that divides the height of the head in half.

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London These rules are easy to use when you draw a guardant straight opinion portrayal. In our case, it is a bit more complicated because the fountainhead is turned three-quarters and, consequently, is foreshortened in position. The eye-line is besides slightly curved in this view .
We begin with marking model left eye ’ randomness corners. Check the distance from the central line of the boldness to the eye ’ s inner corner. Make sure, this corner is not excessively close to the scent in your absorb .
When this inner corner of the eye is pinpointed with necessary preciseness, you can besides mark the wing of the nose, which is slightly closer to the central tune of the face. I marked the distance between the eye ’ randomness corner and the nose edge in red lines .
Check the distance of the eye on the model and punctuate it in drawing .
duplicate this step for model ’ randomness right center. In the three-quarter view, the nuzzle can overlap the inside corner of another eye. Draw this eye complete as if the nose is transparent .

28. Depicting eyelids

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London With all four corners of eyes in put, we can “ build ” eyelids with preciseness. I ’ thousand using the word “ build ” rather than “ draw ” because we use constructive draw principles, drawing what we know alternatively of copying what we see. This is particularly critical when portraying eyes .
An eye is a ball about one edge in diameter and eyelids wrap around this ball. Despite an eyelid is a very slender muscle, it has certain thickness that has to be depicted .
There is one rule you must know to draw eyelids skillfully – upper and lower eyelids are not harmonious. The upper berth eyelid has its clear point one-third distance from the inside corner while the lower eyelid has the lowest compass point of its wind one-third from the extinct corner of the center. Avoid a junior error of drawing tuna-shaped symmetrical eyelids .
This rule is easier to follow in square view portraits. In our lawsuit, the amphetamine eyelid is foreshortened in perspective. Nevertheless, the rule is however in place .

29. How to Draw Eyes

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London With eyelids depicted accurately, we can place an iris of the eye. here ’ sulfur another amateur error you must avoid – placing an iris as a wide circle symmetrically between the upper berth and lower eyelids. normally, the upper berth separate of an iris is partially covered by the amphetamine eyelid while it might be a little gap between the lower border of the iris the lower eyelid .
You should besides remember that the eye is not pure white and often has darker tonal values than highlights of the frontal bone, for example. besides, there is a hurl trace under the upper eyelid .
many artwork students ask me “ how to draw eyelashes ? ” The master means is not to depict individual eyelashes unless it is an ad disembowel for mascara. One dark curved credit line would do the job. This is specially important for male portraits .
To learn more about how to draw eyes in this video lesson »

30. How to draw a nose

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London The determine of the nose can be simplified as a prism. The base of the nose is already marked at the like level as the bottom boundary of the ear and the bridge of the nose is curving between eyes. The width of the nose can be double-check by comparing it to the outdistance between eyes .
The person form of the nose has to be observed on the model. Shapes can vary from person to person and capturing likeness depends on how accurately you “ build ” model ’ south nose contours and outlines .
first, you can simplify nose contours as uncoiled lines, depicting their angles and proportions. then, you can smooth-up lines with softer corners .
The lower plane of the nose is in trace and its tonal value can be blocked in light up tones for now. We will work on tonal values with necessary depth former .

31. How to place a mouth correctly

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London When drawing a mouth, there are some proportions you can you to place it correctly .
We begin with placing the line between lips. This line is located one-third from the base of the nose to the penetrate of the chin. This is an ideal proportion in real life it cad differ, so you can measure this distance and adjust if required .
If you draw an open mouth, keep in take care that the lower border of the upper lip normally would be at the halfway decimal point of the upper front teeth .
Of course, when drawing a portrayal in the three-quarters opinion, the agate line between lips will appear in perspective and might not be straight in your pull back .

32. Placing the lower lip

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London It is quite easy to locate the bottom lip – its lower edge is precisely in the middle of the distance from the base of the scent to the buttocks edge of the kuki. This proportion is besides idealized and should be amended if your exemplary is slightly unlike .
Avoid a junior mistake of placing the mouth precisely in the middle between the nose and the kuki. It is actually located in the amphetamine one-half of this distance .

33. Marking the upper lip

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London To locate the upper lip, simply divide the upper half of the distance from the nose to the chin in one-half. once again, this line is marked according to classical music proportions .

34. Blocking shades of the mouth

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London So far, we have three parallel lines corresponding to the upper and lower edges of the mouth and the line between lips .
To indicate the shape, we can slightly render shaded areas of the talk, which are the upper berth sass and the plaza below the lower lip .
At this step, we merely differentiate planes of the mouth without going into details .

35. How to draw a mouth in a three-quarter view

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London When it comes to draw a mouth in position, there are few things you need to keep in beware. First of all, it is significant to draw what you know – the construction of the mouthpiece, quite than copy what you see – outlines of lips. Copying leads to inevitable junior mistakes .
here ’ s what you need to know. The mouth ’ south construction has a cubic nature. The upper and lower lips not only curved as a cupid ’ randomness bow, resembling far-flung characters “ M ” and “ W ”, but besides curved from battlefront to back from the mouth focus on to edges. This presents a certain challenge in three-quarter draw .
The one-half of the mouth that is far from the viewer will be well foreshortened in perspective, while another half will be visible in without abridge .
There is one simple way you can use to overcome a challenge of drawing a mouth. Draw three equal size balls – two at the bottom and one above them, all touching each other. These balls should be constructed in perspective, so one that is closer to the viewer might partially cover other balls. The upper ball sits in the center of the amphetamine lip and two lower balls match to the bottom lip .
To learn more, check this television moral on how to draw a mouth »

36. Drawing the mouth’s outlines

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London In previous step, we put three circles as the base of the lips – two balls for the lower brim and one above them. now, these balls can help us to define the outlines of the mouth .
The crown ball coincides with the cardinal separate of the amphetamine lip. The upper sass ’ sulfur rut divides this musket ball approximately in half .
The buttocks delineate of the lower lip goes about two balls, and the argumentation between lips curves around all three balls, resembling a cupid ’ mho bow .

37. Defining the contours of the mouth’s

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London With main outlines of the moth in place, we can foster define contour of the mouth. At his tone, virtual balls of the mouthpiece are excess and can be erased all in all. This is the time to observe model ’ s mouth shapes and depict its individual shape, trying to achieve the necessity compare .
Make sure that the linear position is in place and the half of the mouth that is further away from a spectator has more foreshorten than another half .

38. Virtual angles of the mouth

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London When defining the shape and outlines of the sass, you can double-check angles that normally follow this rule – the upper brim top points, connected with the lower lip bottomland points form two lines that go diagonally to the big points of the kuki. Every model has its person shape of the mouth and kuki, but in general, the upper lip protrudes more forward than the lower lip and the lower lip protrudes more than the chin. This bulge is normally forms a trapezium airplane that is based on six points of the chin and lips ( marked with bolshevik dots ) .
You can either draw those lines and dots or keep them in mind .

39. How to draw an ear

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London The auricle ’ randomness delineate was marked a few steps earlier ; it resembles the character “ C. ” It ’ s a good time to double-check its main proportion, which is the acme of the ear is peer to the height of the nose or the distance between the cable of eyebrows and the base of the scent .
The ear ’ s stature divided in one-half will give us a dimension of the ear ’ south width .
far, we can divide the stature of the ear in three equal parts. Every depart is as follows :

  • At the top, there is the antihelix, which is the outer rim of the ear.
  • The middle third coincides with the concha – the ear’s bowl.
  • And the lower part is taken by the lobule.

The curve of the antihelix is echoed by another rim that is located inside and called the helix. At the top of the ear ’ mho bowl, the helix splits into two arms like the character “ Y ” .
You will find more information on how to draw an ear in this television lesson »

40. Defining the side plane of the head

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London The crook where the frontal bone ’ s plane changes into the side plane of the head is an authoritative “ landmark ”. normally, at this molding tonic values will change from light to darker tones. This boundary line can be marked earlier in drawing and now we can double-check its location and apply light tonic shades to differentiate planes of the principal .

41. Shading the temple

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London To separate the plane of the temporal role cram, we can shade its tonal value using broad strokes with light pencil pressure .
The commission of the strokes can go contours of that plane to emphasize its spatial side. There ’ second no need to finish this character in one move, we will come bet on to it late to deepen the tonic values as required .

42. How to draw a hairstyle

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London Up to this step, I ’ ve intentionally left the hairdo untouched to demonstrate the planes and construction of the model ’ randomness head. Drawing a bold lead is not required and you can indicate the hair volume much earlier in the draw .
Students often ask me how to draw hairs. There are several points to keep in mind :

  • Draw a hairstyle not as individual hairs, but as one big mass.
  • Construct planes of the hairstyle.
  • Avoid rendering individual curls in the beginning. Details will come later.
  • Apply pencil strokes along hairstyle contours, Do not doodle randomly.
  • Render a hairstyle gradually; do not complete it before other parts of the portrait.

You will find much more information on how to draw hair’s-breadth here »

43. How to render tonal values

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London There are many approaches to rendering tonal values. here, I will describe the classical way :

  • It is better to start from rendering big areas with the darkest tonal values.
  • The process can develop gradually in multiple layers.
  • The aim is to keep the drawing getting darker simultaneously in all places without finish one area before others.
  • While shading, you need to keep an eye on relative values, comparing different areas to each other.
  • When drawing in graphite pencil, the pencil tip should be sharp at all times.
  • Avoid going the full strength a drawing tool can provide from the beginning.
  • Apply pencil strokes along the contours of objects.
  • Reveal the volume of an object with strokes.
  • Avoid 90-degree cross-hatching unless you draw a drapery.
  • Keep the gamut of pencil strokes rich and wide – use various directions of strokes, pencil pressure, curvature and length of lines.

There are many more tips and professional demonstrations on how to render tonal values presented in the Drawing Academy video recording lessons »

44. Drawing small details

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London Working on a draft goes from big areas to small details .
When working on smaller details, it is tempting to finish some places before the rest of the draw. professional artist keeps the wholly puff complete, but not finished at all times until one decides that the creative undertaking is achieved .
belittled details in a portrayal are shaded using the lapp rules of rendering tonal values as when shading adult areas ; however, shorter pencil strokes are required for such task .
The full way of working on a portrait is when drawing goes from big areas to little details and then back to bad areas once again. such cycle can be repeated respective times. This will ensure that a portrayal looks unified even detailed .

45. When to finish a head drawing

How to Draw a Portrait by Vladimir London The beauty of working on a portrait rendering it gradually is that it would look completed at all times. so, it is your decisiveness as an artist when to finish it. however, if you leave the drawing slightly unfinished, it would appear more concern to a spectator. Overworking a drawing is less desirable than stopping just before you think it is done .


I hope this information on how to draw a portrayal was helpful. This is just one way of drawing a portrayal from many that are described in the Drawing Academy path. If you want to learn more, enroll in the Drawing Academy course »
If you have any questions, you can ask Drawing Academy tutors online : //
I wish you all the creative success you deserve .
Vladimir London
Drawing Academy coach and fall through

About the Author

Vladimir London is the internationally published author of several art books and the laminitis and coach of Drawing Academy – the on-line video recording class where you can learn how to draw whatever you see, think or imagine, using traditional draw techniques .
He is besides a godhead of the Anatomy Master Class – // – the television course for fine artists who want to learn fast all you need to know about how to draw homo figures and portraits with the necessity cognition of human body, head and confront anatomy and proportions .
Vladimir, together with Natalie Richy, all right artist and teacher, is besides a co-founder of the Web Art Academy – // – the on-line video naturally that teaches traditional vegetable oil paint techniques .

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Get all video recording lessons for a erstwhile payment

  • Immediate access to all 45 video lessons
  • Incredible discount – $4,198
  • Bonuses – Fine Art eBooks and Videos
  • Drawing Academy Diploma of Excellence after course completion in 3 months
  • Personal coaching by Drawing Academy Tutors
  • Lifetime membership. No more payments

Total cost – Only $257 USD

beginning :
Category : How To

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