Four Drawing Techniques To Practice

Four Drawing Techniques To Practice

As you know every Monday I film video critiques for members of Drawing Tutorials online. I have been filming video critiques for ten years now. It’s really important that you get into the habit of receiving feedback on your artwork.

The key element with the weekly critiques is context. I’m able to give you specific guidance on the artwork you’ve posted in relation to a certain course. I also answer questions that you ask. Again it’s all about context.

The other really cool thing with the critiques within the member’s area of DTO, is consistency. it’s one thing to get feedback once. It’s another to get contextual feedback on your work on an ongoing basis.

I trust the four drawing techniques taught in the video tutorial below will help you. They are simple yet hard drawing techniques to implement. They are hard because they take a lot of practice. The practice can become tedious. However, if you are looking to draw accurate portraits they are a must.



Don’t forget to sign up for my free drawing course right below. Thanks so much for watching, let me know what you think.


How To Draw A Portrait With Minimal Shadow Shapes

How To Draw A Portrait With Minimal Shadow Shapes

Have you ever tried to draw a portrait where the person in the photo reference had no contrasting shadow shapes? In other words the lighting within the photo was very flat.

When there aren’t many shadow shapes to draw it’s much more difficult to capture a likeness. In this video critique I help out Marjan, a member of Drawing Tutorials Online, with trying to capture a likeness. As you can see in the video below the young girl does not have many shadow shapes to cling onto.

In my latest Begin Here Step By Step course I teach a lesson called “Seeing Shadow Shapes”. Just about every member loved this lesson because shading in shadow shapes makes the process of portrait drawing much easier.

So keep in mind that it’s best to light your subject using form light in order for there to be some recognizable shadow shapes.

Now if you already have photo reference displaying flat light then you want to focus your efforts on drawing the shape of the hair first. Why you may ask, because the shape of the hair acts as a frame for the face. You want to take your time with measuring and drawing the angles of the face where the edge of the face touches the hair.

You also want to look for non contrasting shadow shapes. Practice shading in light non contrasting shadow shapes. Shadows shapes don’t always have to be super dark. You just have to practice being able to recognize subtle values shifts on the face of the person you are drawing.

I hope this video critique helps you with your portrait drawings.


Thank you for watching! If you want more drawing tips on a weekly basis click here.

Natalie’s Sketchbook Part Two

Natalie’s Sketchbook Part Two

Natalie is a student currently enrolled in my Foundation Animation drawing class at the School Of Visual Arts in Manhattan New York. We’ve got one month left in the Spring semester. I will miss Natalie and her incredible drawings, however she is onto bigger and better things. Natalie is pursuing a career as a Character Designer and Visual Developer.

Natalie’s character design is super authentic. Her characters combine elegant beauty with a touch of grit. I truly love how Natalie works to balance out each sketchbook page through cut out pieces of origami paper.

Her incredible line quality adjacent to pattern and vibrant color really work together. As a teacher looking through Natalie’s sketchbook is very inspiring.

I hope you find some inspiration as well from browsing through her two sketchbooks. She is of a group of students that is just playing at such a higher level.

Kaelin’s Sketchbook – Fun, Cute N’ Cartoony

Kaelin’s Sketchbook – Fun, Cute N’ Cartoony

Kaelin is a really cool student to have in class. She is super fun, a true lover of animation not to mention really talented. Kaelin’s talent shows true when she is drawing her cute, soft, round cartoony looking characters.

I trust you can see her progress. Her line work has really developed over the course of one short semester. Kaelin is truly blessed with a personal style. Now her job throughout college is to refine, mature and develop that personal style to an even higher level.

I hope you enjoyed looking through Kaelin’s sketchbook. I know I did. I especially love having Kaelin’s infectious appetite for learning every Friday in class.


Check out Kaelin’s instagram. Thanks again Kaelin for sharing your art!

Character Design Via Crayola

If you love drawing zany characters with lot’s of color watching Emily’s sketchbook video is a must. Emily is extremely creative. She draws with just about anything she can find including lot’s of Crayola crayons. Emily is completely unconventional when it comes to figure drawing as well. She exaggerates everything.

From an instructors point of view Emily is a dream student to have in class. She has so much to offer the more conventional students. She offers up an approach which says take chances, be creative, be different. I love that.

School starts once again in three weeks. I look forward to meeting a whole new group of students. At the same time I thank my lucky stars that Emily joined my class last year half way through the semester.

She definitely added a whole new dimension to class.

You can find more of Emily’s work at