A Guide to Charcoal Drawings

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This post is part of Tutorial Tuesday, a series hosted by “The Admission Insider” and PortPrep owner Karen Kesteloot . Tutorial Tuesday aims to help students improve the artworks in their college art portfolio by teaching various hand drawing techniques.

A Guide to Charcoal Drawings

Using the right tools and utilising the right technique is important in charcoal drawings. This tutorial post aims to educate students about the best types of charcoal used for drawing, as well as the best practices on how to make the most out of your drawings so you can include them in your art portfolio in college!

There’s something bold and daring about charcoal drawings compared to other types of drawing. The thickness produced by the lines made using charcoal add richness and expression to your artworks. Also, the techniques involved in charcoal drawings such as smudging the charcoal using a cloth can make for more compelling pieces when done correctly.

Showing to colleges that you have the aptitude and skill required to pull off artistic charcoal drawings in your art portfolio should definitely increase your chances of getting accepted to an art program!

In the tutorial videos below, Karen Kesteloot explains the different types of charcoal for drawing and shows different ways on how to use charcoal and create a piece that’s worthy of being included in your art portfolio.

The embedded item below is a playlist and contains three videos about charcoal drawings. To view all videos, click on the list icon on the upper left hand of the item.

How to Draw Using Charcoal

Key takeaways for your charcoal drawings

  • Browse through magazines with charcoal drawings. Finding creative inspiration can be found by looking at art publications and looking at works that you would like to replicate in your drawings.
  • Use sponge to distribute the charcoal in your drawing.
  • For smoother backgrounds using charcoal, scrape off charcoal using a knife and place the charcoal dust on a cloth. Rub the charcoal on the canvas using the cloth to get the desired volume on the canvas.
  • To draw clouds over your charcoal background, use a kneaded eraser and apply the right amount of force rubbing it on the charcoal to achieve the needed effect
  • Use willow charcoal to draw trees because they mark lightly and easily on your canvas
  • Compressed charcoal is much darker and draws heavier lines compared to willow charcoal
  • To prevent dust of the charcoal from getting to your table or floor where your canvas is set up, place a piece of tape underneath

If you wish to receive the same help regarding charcoal drawings to create daring pieces for your college art portfolio, hire Karen as your portfolio coach! She will help you improve your drawings and create a portfolio that will get you into the best art and design programs in college!

Click here or on the banner below to view her coaching packages!

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