Self Portraits and People


From Frida Kahlo to Vincent Van Gogh, self portraits have been a part of the arts for ages. However, some find it difficult to create a ‘realistic’ image of someone. However, there are tips and principles to go by when drawing a self portrait or just a portrait.

Hair is really difficult to draw at times. Especially when someone doesn’t know what they are doing. Hair is very detailed and difficult to create. However, thin pencil strokes create a texture that makes the hair seem almost real. Along with pencil strokes, a highlight, mid-light, and low-light are required. This defines the hair and makes it seem wavy or straight, meaning more texture. I used black as my low-light, purple and blue as my mid-light, and green in between my highlight and mid-light.

Although most of us rely on a peach coloured pencil for skin, it is better to use more colour. In the drawing above, I have actually coordinated blues, greens and purples into the skin, along with yellow, pink, red, brown, and white. Let’s face it, nobody has just one shade of one colour of their face. With different varieties of colours, you can shade and define the skin, making it more realistic. Also, using directional lines is essential. If someone’s cheeks are round, you can show that through directional lines. If someone has less round cheeks, you can use directional lines to show that also. I know that this takes time, but it definitely looks a lot better in the end.

I hope you found this useful, and if you have any questions about my drawing, feel free to ask in the comment section. If you can subscribe to my blog and like my posts, that would be awesome. 🙂



2 thoughts on “Self Portraits and People

  1. I am not quite sure how I’d work blues and purples into flesh. But, you give good pointers about directional lines and the thickness of hair details. I see you’ve done a fine portrait (of yourself) above. I am just having a tad of a hard time reading gray text on white.

    Liked by 1 person

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