Fundamentals of Portrait Drawing with Pencil

A course by Matt Smith , Artist

Artist. San Diego, United States.
Joined June 2021

Learn to sketch a portrait from scratch by exploring a variety of drawing techniques and bring it to life using basic shapes, tones, shadows, and line work

  • 99% positive reviews (146)
  • 5468 students
  • Audio: English, English
  • English, Spanish, Portuguese, German, French, Italian, Polish, Dutch

Learn to sketch a portrait from scratch by exploring a variety of drawing techniques and bring it to life using basic shapes, tones, shadows, and line work

A course by Matt Smith

To learn how to draw a striking portrait, you need three things: a pencil, some practice, and a good teacher. In this online course, award-winning artist and teacher Matthew Smith teaches you the basics of portrait drawing, from the initial proportions to the final details. So really, all you need is a pencil.

Matthew takes you step by step through the process, starting with drawing exercises to warm up, sketching proportional facial features, adding detail with tones and shadows, to creating texture with line work. By the end of this course, you will be able to draw realistic and captivating portraits from scratch.

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What will you learn in this online course?

16 lessons & 22 downloads

Dexterity Building Exercises
12 minutes, 23 seconds
Basic Head Construction
9 minutes, 28 seconds
Shapes and Features 1
16 minutes, 30 seconds
Shapes and Features 2
10 minutes, 55 seconds
Head Sketches Based on Shapes
17 minutes, 58 seconds
Constructing the Head
5 minutes, 57 seconds
  • 99% positive reviews (146)
  • 5468 students
  • 16 lessons (2h 53m)
  • 22 additional resources (10 files)
  • Online and at your own pace
  • Available on the app
  • Audio: English, English
  • English, Spanish, Portuguese, German, French, Italian, Polish, Dutch
  • Level: Beginner
  • Unlimited access forever

What is this course's project?

Draw a complete portrait from scratch in pencil.

Projects by course students

Who is this online course for?

This course is for anyone who wants to improve their drawing abilities by learning how to draw a portrait.

Requirements and materials

No previous experience required.

All you need is a sketchbook, a pencil, and an eraser.


Reviews

5468 Students
146 Reviews
99% Positive ratings

Matt Smith

A course by Matt Smith

Teacher Plus
Artist

Matthew Smith is an award-winning artist, illustrator, and educator from upstate New York, but has been living in San Diego, California for 15 years. He comes from a family of six, and has a twin brother, who is an artist as well. Like many artists growing up, he has been creating art for as long as he can remember. From drawing dinosaurs very early on to his favorite cartoon and video game characters, he was always creating.

After completing an art degree in university, he began to teach drawing and painting for over a decade. He has created artwork for clients across multiple industries, from gaming, film to fashion. Some of his clients include TIME Magazine, BLT Communications, Remetee Clothing, among others. His work has also been published in multiple books and magazines, such as Spectrum, Infected By Art, and ARC Salon .


Content

  • U1

    Introduction

    • About Me
    • Influences
  • U2

    The Basics

    • Materials and How To Use Them
    • Dexterity Building Exercises
    • Basic Head Construction
    • Shapes and Features 1
    • Shapes and Features 2
    • Head Sketches Based on Shapes
  • U3

    Creating a Finished Head Sketch

    • Constructing the Head
    • Advancing the Construction
    • Corrections and Filling in the Shapes
    • Judging Proportions
    • Refining the Shapes
  • U4

    Taking the Sketch Further

    • Adding Darker Values
    • Adding Calligraphy
    • Finishing the Sketch
  • FP

    Final project

    • Fundamentals of Portrait Drawing with Pencil

What to expect from a Domestika course

  • Learn at your own pace

    Enjoy learning from home without a set schedule and with an easy-to-follow method. You set your own pace.

  • Learn from the best professionals

    Learn valuable methods and techniques explained by top experts in the creative sector.

  • Meet expert teachers

    Each expert teaches what they do best, with clear guidelines, true passion, and professional insight in every lesson.

  • Certificates
    Plus

    If you're a Plus member, get a custom certificate signed by your teacher for every course. Share it on your portfolio, social media, or wherever you like.

  • Get front-row seats

    Videos of the highest quality, so you don't miss a single detail. With unlimited access, you can watch them as many times as you need to perfect your technique.

  • Share knowledge and ideas

    Ask questions, request feedback, or offer solutions. Share your learning experience with other students in the community who are as passionate about creativity as you are.

  • Connect with a global creative community

    The community is home to millions of people from around the world who are curious and passionate about exploring and expressing their creativity.

  • Watch professionally produced courses

    Domestika curates its teacher roster and produces every course in-house to ensure a high-quality online learning experience.


FAQs

Domestika's courses are online classes that provide you with the tools and skills you need to complete a specific project. Every step of the project combines video lessons with complementary instructional material, so you can learn by doing. Domestika's courses also allow you to share your own projects with the teacher and with other students, creating a dynamic course community.

All courses are 100% online, so once they're published, courses start and finish whenever you want. You set the pace of the class. You can go back to review what interests you most and skip what you already know, ask questions, answer questions, share your projects, and more.

The courses are divided into different units. Each one includes lessons, informational text, tasks, and practice exercises to help you carry out your project step by step, with additional complementary resources and downloads. You'll also have access to an exclusive forum where you can interact with the teacher and with other students, as well as share your work and your course project, creating a community around the course.

You can redeem the course you received by accessing the redeeming page and entering your gift code.

If you're a Plus member, when you complete a course you've purchased, you'll instantly get your personalized certificate. You can see all your certificates in the Certificates section of your profile. You can download your certificates as PDFs and share the link online. Learn more about certificates.
Fundamentals of Portrait Drawing with Pencil. Illustration course by Matt Smith

Fundamentals of Portrait Drawing with Pencil

A course by Matt Smith
Artist. San Diego, United States.
Joined June 2021
  • 99% positive reviews (146)
  • 5468 students