Saturday, August 10, 2013

How to Draw and Paint Facial Features Part 3

The nose knows.

I did this drawing in class, while discussing the structure of the nose.
You may find the first 2 parts of this series about painting facial features, in which I demoed drawing and painting the eye,  here at Part 1, and Part 2.

This was one of several reference photos that I presented to my class. 
Key points to look for:
Click Read More to see the rest of the post. 

~The width of the nose compared to the length.
~Look for the ball on the end of the nose.
~Notice the nostrils are not circle shaped but more tear drop.
~Look for the bump most people have on the bridge of the nose where the bone ends and cartilage begins. 
~The cast shadow will help describe the shape of the nose and the shape of the cheek so pay careful attention to it.
A fun video to watch is's, How to Draw a Nose Step-By-Step. 

I worked from my premixed flesh color palette. To see the post about mixing these color strings see my post, How to Draw and Paint Facial Features Part 2.

I transferred the drawing onto the toned panel, then I went over the drawing using a permanent sepia pen.

I then worked from dark to light and background to foreground. 

I decided that the shadows were warm and the highlights were cool.

Key points:
~Soften edges by painting adjacent wet areas in one sitting. 
~Think of the planes of the nose. Moving from left to right they are: the cheek, left side of nose, top, right side of the nose, and cheek. 
~Allow most of your brush strokes to move across the form rather along the form to better describe the dimensionality of the form.
~Use a warm dark color mixture on the nostrils avoiding blue. I like a combination burnt umber, permanent matter deep and transparent oxide orange.

If I wanted to refine it more I could keep working as long as the paint was wet. Then let it dry for a couple days and do a second pass. 

Thanks for playing, see you next time when we take a lick at lips. 


  1. Hi Terry,
    Just wanted to let you know that your blog has been an excellent resource for me in my own painting and is much appreciated. Informative, concise and entertaining! Keep up the good work and I'll keep reading.

  2. Thanks Aron, Glad it's working for you. Thanks for being a reader!

  3. Thank You for sharing.
    I've always wanted this type of drawing lesson.
    Very generous of you!

    FC x

  4. Thanks Terry for your great informative blog. I've decided to give portraits a go and I feel more confident now with your instructions behind me.

  5. Hi Terry
    This is really cool, I am a teacher who did art a few years back when I was at high school. I am wanting to get back into it and fine tune my skills once more. thank you!

    1. I'm glad you are enjoying the blog. Thank you for being a reader. Happy painting!



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