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How to Draw a Portrait With Pencil

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It seems that it’s impossible to draw well if you are not talented. But the reality is that the basics of drawing can be learned by anyone who is ready to follow simple rules and practice. You can only master something if you practice a lot. So, one of the first and more effective exercises is drawing a portrait.

We at 5-Minute Crafts want to share tips on how to learn to draw a portrait with a pencil. The most important thing is to be patient and not worry about making mistakes.

How to draw a portrait

Step 1. Start with simple shapes. Draw a circle with a cross inside of it — the lines should cross in the center of the circle.

Step 2. Inside the circle, draw a rectangle, so that the corners are on the circle lines.

Step 3. Measure the distance from the center of the circle to the lower line of the rectangle. From the line, measure the same distance down and draw a dot — this is where the chin will end. Now, draw the outline of the chin and cheeks, as the picture above shows.

Step 4. Above the horizontal line, you drew on the first step, mark a spot where the eyebrows are going to go. The spot for the eyes will be a bit lower.

Step 5. To draw the eyes, measure their width. Divide the distance from one side of the circle to the other into 5 equal sections. After that, draw the eyes and eyebrows left and right from the central line.

Step 6. The lower side of the rectangle you drew in the second step shows the spot where the tip of the nose will be. The width may vary, but usually, it’s smaller than the distance of the inside corners of the eyes. Draw the nose.

Step 7. Find a spot to draw the mouth: the upper lip should go on the lower edge of the circle. Based on the position of the pupils, draw a proportional mouth. The lower lip is usually fuller than the upper one.

Step 8. Draw the ears. Watch the nose tip and the eyebrow line that define the position of the ears.

Step 9. Add the hairline. If you are drawing someone with long straight hair that covers the forehead, the hairline won’t be visible, but it’s still better to mark it. It starts on the upper side of the rectangle you drew on your second step.

Step 10. Draw the hair. Pay attention to how it grows: if it’s styled naturally, there’s more volume at the top.

Step 11. Now add the neck. To make it look proportional, it’s better to draw it by looking at the horizontal line under the nose tip. Female necks are a bit narrower than male ones.

How to draw eyes

The shape and the size of the eyes are different in different people. People’s age also has a big influence on their eyes. For example, in older people, the eyes are hidden under the eyelids, there are visible dark circles under the eyes, and the eyebrows get bushy. Young women have thick eyelashes and thin eyebrows.

Draw the pupil considering the light and shadows or the end product will look fake.

How to draw a mouth

To draw an attractive mouth, start with sketches of the shapes. The lips are always separated from each other with a clear line. The lower lip is always simple and there’s more detail on the upper lip. Make sure that the middle line between the lips is always lower toward the edges, even if a person is smiling.

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