I’ve always wanted to do some sort of Cara Delevingne illustration because her look is very unique. When it comes to coloured pencils I still feel as if I’ve got a lot to learn, but I’m really happy with how this one’s turned out. The trouble with drawings like this is that it’s difficult to judge when it’s finished. As I was adding to it I conjured up a list of helpful pointers for those of you wanting to try this medium. I by no means am claiming to be the expert, I just think sometimes it can be quite hard finding techniques/help so I thought I’d let you in on some things I’ve learnt along the way. 🙂
1. Sketch everything in pencil first, then erase it so it’s just faint enough to see. Use a kneaded eraser to remove the sketch. Kneaded erasers work by sticking to the pencil lines rather than wearing down the layers of the paper (like a regular eraser).
2. Use black and white sparingly. Also, try to save them for highlights, the Sclera (white part of the eye) and shadowed areas.
3. Alternatively, you can use really pale yellows, browns and greys for light areas instead of white.
4. Work from light to dark to light. By this I mean: basic skin tone and eyes, then shadowy areas (e.g. cheek bones) and finally highlights. The reason I recommend this method is because dark colours are harder than light colours to correct/go over.
5. Try using Brown card to practice on. It’s not matte paper but this can be a plus. Because of it’s slightly rough texture, it adds texture to the skin – which in real life wouldn’t be completely smooth anyway. It’s a good base colour for hair and skin tones. It’s also readily available if you order loads of parcels like me ;).
6. When you’ve finished colouring the Iris and white of the eye, faintly go around the Iris with a light grey colour. This will take off some of the sharpness. Also use the same colour to shade the outer edges of the eye white, particularly shadowy areas under the eyelashes. Doing both these things should make your eyes look more realistic.
7. Keep your pencil colours nice and sharp so you can get lots of fine details in.
8. Most importantly, don’t give up and enjoy the process!
I was thinking of doing a post of my favourite art materials, would that be something that would interest some of you?
Edit: this made my life.