In this 2 1/2 hour, full demonstration, renowned artist and veteran teacher Nathan Fowkes takes you through the entire process of Portrait Drawing in Charcoal. Nathan illuminates how to construct and proportion the portrait clearly and accurately and interpret the values of light and shadow to create the illusion of life on a two-dimensional surface. Learn how to design edges to create depth and artistic emphasis and render with the time-honored medium of charcoal. Nathan shows how to create nuances of expression and design the entire portrait composition.

All through the demonstration, Nathan includes tips and techniques to make the challenge of portrait drawing accessible to all serious students.

BIO: Nathan Fowkes is a veteran entertainment and fine artist. He has taught traditional and design courses for over a decade. Nathan was a conceptual artist for top animated films with notable clients such as DreamWorks, Disney and Blue Sky. He has worked on 11 feature films including: The Prince of Egypt, Spirit, Shrek Universe, How to Train Your Dragon and The Legend of Puss in Boots. He is also a consultant for clients that include: Blizzard Entertainment, Infinity Ward, Disney Interactive, Riot Games, Ubisoft and Rovio. Nathan is currently a design lead at Paramount Feature Animation.

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Course Curriculum

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Portrait Drawing In Charcoal – Full Demo | Preview FREE 00:05:00
Preview for Portrait Drawing in Charcoal Demo with Nathan Fowkes
Section 1
Introduction to Portrait Drawing Demonstration FREE 00:23:00
Renowned artist and veteran teacher Nathan Fowkes takes you through the entire process of Portrait Drawing in Charcoal. After introducing the materials in the demo, Nathan begins by blocking in the figure with an orange Prismacolor pencil.
Section 2
Tone | Find the Simple Statement 00:25:00
Using compressed charcoal to block in the portrait, he finds the simple masses of light and shadow to make a clear statement and explains why it is so important to squint to see the relationship between light and shadow shapes.
Section 3
Laying in Heavy Darks 00:24:00
Using Cretacolor chunky charcoal, Nathan commits to applying a heavy dense dark tone to the background and fabric. Frequent cleaning of the work-space is needed when using your fingers to push the charcoal around the paper. Learn to use your fingers and a stump to model form and soften edges, maintaining simple light and shadow shapes.
Section 4
Model the Form 00:25:00
Use soft and sharp edges maintaining the silhouette of the portrait while working on the face area. Push and pull the tone to roll the form and emphasize the falloff of light on the forms of the face to help build the three-dimensionality of the drawing.
Section 5
Highlights and Cast Shadows 00:25:00
Continue to simplify light and shadows shapes drawing in charcoal and the kneaded eraser. Learn how to use a hand mirror to help make judgments on areas to adjust. Understand the importance of taking a step back to look at your drawing to help decide what is working and what is not.
Section 6
Finishing the Drawing 00:25:00
Emphasize drawing around the form to help communicate the three-dimensionality of the portrait and work around the whole image, making a simplifying pass and a detail pass to finish the portrait.
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