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The Basics of Charcoal Drawing – Your New Hobby

The Basics of Charcoal Drawing - Your New Hobby Bulman Wealth

Creating a charcoal portrait doesn’t have to be intimidating. It can be a simple, step-by-step process. Here’s a quick guide to help you draw your charcoal portrait with ease.

Firstly, identify a clear, high-quality photograph to use as your reference image. The better the quality, the easier your job will be. When you’ve chosen your image, print or display it in grayscale to better understand the different shades of black, white, and gray.[1]

Next, sketch the outline. Use light strokes, as you’ll be doing a lot of erasing and adjusting. Use a grid if you’re struggling with proportions. Remember, it’s okay to make mistakes at this stage. Once your outline is accurate, you can start adding details.[1]

Now, it’s time to apply charcoal. Start by mapping out the darkest areas of the image with your charcoal pencil. This stage is known as “blocking in.” It’s all about identifying where the light and darkness fall on your subject.

Once you’ve blocked in the dark areas, blend them out with a blending stump or a piece of tissue. This will help create a smooth transition from the darkest areas to the lighter ones. Be patient and keep blending until you’re satisfied with the result.[1]

Next, add the lighter shades. Using white charcoal, highlight the areas where light hits your subject. This will give your portrait depth and a three-dimensional look.

To improve your charcoal portrait, pay particular attention to the eyes, as they can convey a lot of emotion and personality. Be careful not to overwork your drawing; sometimes, less is more. Remember to add some charcoal to the background as well to create a contrast between your subject and its surroundings. Finally, ensure you maintain clean edges and outlines to keep your portrait crisp and realistic. Above all, enjoy the process and learn from each stroke you make.

The final step is detailing. Add the finer details, such as wrinkles, hair strands, and any other features that make your subject unique. This is your chance to bring your portrait to life. Don’t rush it.

Finally, step back and review your work. Make any necessary adjustments. Remember, a charcoal portrait is not about perfection but about capturing the essence of your subject.

Just like a charcoal portrait, each financial picture is unique. If you’re looking for a guide to your financial life, Click HERE to reach out to one of our professionals at Bulman Wealth Group for a complimentary review of your situation.


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Opinions expressed herein are solely those of Chris Bulman Inc. dba Bulman Wealth Group and our editorial staff. The information contained in this material has been derived from sources believed to be reliable but is not guaranteed as to accuracy and completeness and does not purport to be a complete analysis of the materials discussed. All information and ideas should be discussed in detail with your individual advisor prior to implementation. Investment advisory services are offered through Chris Bulman Inc dba Bulman Wealth Group, an SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Insurance products and services are offered through Chris Bulman, Inc. dba BWG Insurance Agency and Ameritas Life Insurance Corp., CA State Insurance License # 0M46922. Being registered as an investment advisor does not imply a certain level of skill or training.

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