Learning to Draw Faces (that look human)

When I first started this blog almost a year ago, one of my main purposes was to keep track of my ongoing efforts to learn how to draw.  If you’ve kept up with my posting much,  you know there hasn’t been much drawing practice.

Drawing takes so much effort!  Taking pictures is easier. 

I have produced many pages of faces in the last year that, frankly, are too scary to post.

Recently, however, I’ve renewed my determination.  I’ve been busy copying faces from my art books.  Here’s a recent example that won’t make any babies cry.  I used the painting above (Portrait of a Lady, by Rogier van der Weyden, c. 1460) as a model.  I purposefully lowered the hairline, though.  My book explains that it was the style back then to pluck the hairline back to create an unusually high forehead.  Interesting.

 Here she is again…

And here is my attempt to draw her…

You would not believe how much time I spent on that nose. It’s still not  right. I added the trefoil medallion (a symbol of the Trinity) for fun.

I know it doesn’t look much like the model, but at least it looks like a person, as opposed to an alien life form.  There are a lot of mistakes, but I see a lot of  improvements over the last face I posted!  That progress gives me the courage to post my drawings on here when I know many of you out there can do better. 

I’ll try to post the book I’m going through this weekend.  It’s a self-teaching book about drawing realistic faces and it’s helped me a lot!


  1. Wow! All the same, I’m very impressed by that nose…that’s something I’m still trying to master. 🙂

  2. I think your picture looks better than the one in the book. 🙂

  3. Hi…this face is great! I didn’t see what Smile had written but when I was looking at the two pieces, I was thinking that your drawing has more character and that I like it more than the original.

  4. It’s really good! I love drawing faces (mainly coz I’m too rubbish to draw anything else!) but it really is difficult isn’t it! If you have any tips, swing by and let me know!

    • bscarlettc

      Thank you! I appreciate the encouragement–Yeah, it is hard, especially when your trying to teach yourself! Thanks for stopping by!

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