The Secret to Drawing Noses is….

February 3, 2011

Drawing Faces, Shading

..Knowing What Not to Draw

Again, the variety of noses are many; so I’m not going to get into detail on how to draw the exact shape of a nose, but I will talk about how to shade it and how to avoid making some common mistakes.

Start with drawing the outline of the nose and keep it simple. Lightly outline where the main bulk of shadow is and shade it in.

Now a key to drawing noses is outlining by shading. What I mean by that is instead of drawing the rigid lines of a nose, you can define its shape by shading one side darker then the other. As you can see in illustration below, the shape of the nose is created almost entirely by shading.

Now that we’ve defined the shadows, shade in the middle tones and make sure to leave the highlights as white as you can and if the highlighted areas get a bit dirty you can always use an eraser to give it back that shine.

Tip: Caution: Rarely are the nostrils accentuated. The nostrils are not one of the face’s most attractive feature so why draw attention to it? For shading the nostrils and the sides of the nose use the outlining by shading method and try not to use hard, rigid lines.

After shading the nose I like to blend the tones together using the tip of a folded piece of tissue to create a smoother surface. Then do one more check to see if there are any areas that need to be a bit darker or lighter and you’re done.

Outlining by shading is a method you’ll find helpful in drawing many things not just noses so try it out.

And one more important point, practice! Practice drawing different noses; practice drawing them from different angles until you are comfortable drawing them, and practice this shading method too, not only on noses but on other facial features as well.

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