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Charcoal Drawing Easy For Beginners Step by Step [2023]

Drawing with charcoal can be exciting and a bit scary, especially if you’re new to it. Charcoal is great for art because it has deep colors and you can use it in different ways. In this guide, we’ll show you how to make awesome charcoal drawings, starting from picking the right materials to learning important techniques. When you’re done, you’ll feel confident and ready to create amazing art.

Table Of Content

Understanding Charcoal:

Types of Charcoal: There are different kinds of charcoal, like vine, compressed, and charcoal pencils, each with its own features. Vine charcoal is soft and good for sketching, while compressed charcoal is harder and gives darker lines.
Paper: Choosing the right paper matters. We’ll talk about textures, weight, and how rough it is. A paper with more texture can hold more charcoal and give your drawing a different look.

Essential Materials:

Charcoal Pencils: These are good for making precise lines and shading. We’ll recommend some brands. You can get different grades of charcoal pencils, like soft, medium, and hard, for different effects.
Blending Tools: You’ll need erasers and blending tools to fix mistakes and make things smooth. A kneaded eraser is soft and can be shaped to erase small areas, while blending stumps help you blend charcoal for smooth transitions.
Fixatives: These keep your drawing from smudging and help it last longer. Spray fixatives are easy to use and dry quickly. Remember to use fixative in a well-ventilated area.

Setting Up Your Workspace:

Lighting: Good lighting helps you see well while you draw. Natural light is best, but if you’re drawing at night, use a bright lamp without casting shadows on your drawing.
Organizing: Keeping your workspace tidy helps you work better. Use containers to store your charcoal pencils and blending tools, and keep your paper flat to prevent wrinkles.

Basic Drawing Techniques:

Contour Drawing: This helps you get the shape and size of what you’re drawing. Instead of focusing on details, outline the edges of your subject to understand its form.
Value Scale: We’ll explain how light and dark work in drawings. Start with a light sketch, then add darker tones gradually to create depth and dimension.
Hatching and Cross-Hatching: These are ways to make different textures and tones. Hatching involves drawing parallel lines to create shading, while cross-hatching adds depth by crossing lines at different angles.

Step-by-Step Drawing Guide:

Picking a Subject: We’ll help you choose something simple to draw. Start with objects around you, like fruits or household items, before moving on to more complex subjects.
Sketching: Start with a light outline of your subject. Use gentle strokes and keep your lines loose to avoid making mistakes harder to erase.
Adding Shadows: Fill in the darkest parts first. Look for areas where light doesn’t hit your subject and shade them in with darker charcoal.
Building Tones: Make your drawing look 3D with shading. Use hatching and blending tools to add lighter tones and smooth transitions between light and dark areas.
Adding Details: Add small things to make your drawing look real. Pay attention to textures and patterns, and use different pencils to vary line thickness.
Finishing Touches: Look over your drawing and make any final changes before sealing it with fixative. Use a kneaded eraser to lift out highlights and refine edges for a polished look.

Fixing Mistakes:

Smudging: We’ll help you keep your drawing clean. Avoid resting your hand on your drawing, and use a piece of paper under your hand to prevent smudges. You can also use a tissue or soft cloth to gently wipe away excess charcoal.
Overworking: Don’t work on your drawing too much. Take breaks to step back and look at your drawing from a distance to see if it needs adjustments. Remember, less is often more.
Fixing Mistakes: Learn how to fix errors without messing up your drawing. If you make a mistake, don’t panic. Use a kneaded eraser to lift out charcoal or blend it into surrounding areas for a seamless fix.

Great job on finishing your first charcoal drawing! Keep practicing and having fun with it. There’s always more to learn and discover. Happy drawing!

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