Digital Techniques for Illustrated Portraits

A course by German Gonzalez Ramirez
Graphic designer and digital illustrator. Medellín, Colombia.
Joined August 2015
, Graphic designer and digital illustrator

Perfect your digital illustration techniques and learn to tell stories through the portrait

  • Spanish with subtitles in English
  • 99% positive reviews (294)
  • 4321 students

Perfect your digital illustration techniques and learn to tell stories through the portrait

Spanish with subtitles in English
  • 99% positive reviews (294)
  • 4321 students
  • 21 lessons (3h 13m)
  • 21 additional resources (10 files)
  • Online and at your own pace
  • Available on the app
  • Audio: Spanish
  • Spanish, English, Portuguese, German, French, Italian, Polish, Dutch
  • Level: Beginner
  • Unlimited access forever

When it comes to making an illustrated portrait full of magic it is vital to find and highlight the features and characteristics that make it unique. The obsession of Germán González-graphic designer and digital illustrator who has worked with clients such as Air Berlin, Entertainment Weekly or Adobe-is color, which he applies in his portraits through compositions that usually hide discordant and unexpected elements that endow his illustrations of a unique character.

In this course you will learn the fundamental concepts to get started in the world of digital illustration and you will see how to create portraits from the sketch to the final art so that you can give it the use you want. Germán will teach you to better understand light, shade and color and will give you the keys so that your portraits have a special narrative and graphic component.

What will you learn in this online course?

Course table of contents

  • U1
    U1. Introduction
  • U2
    U2. Essential aspects
  • U3
    U3. Steal to create
  • U4
    U4. The Devil Is In The Details
  • FP
    FP Final project
View details

The first thing you will do is to learn more about Germán González's work and discover his influences.

Then he will explain some fundamental aspects about lighting work in a portrait, the use of color and proportions.

Once you have clear the basics you will collect reference images for your illustrations and you will create what Germán calls "morgue file".

You will make the first sketches, select the color palette and learn to create some brushes that will be very useful when creating textures in your digital portraits.

First you will define the essential elements of your portrait such as hair, eyes, clothing and the lights and shadows of the face; Then you will add all kinds of elements that will help you define the personality of the character and give character to your illustration.

Finally, Germán will give you some tips to print your personal stamp on each portrait through small details in the illustration.

What is this course's project?

You will make a digital illustration based on the portrait of one of the characters in your favorite movie.

Projects by course students

Who is this online course for?

To illustrators, designers, cartoonists and anyone interested in learning illustration techniques and digital portrait.

Requirements and materials

It is advisable to have previous knowledge of drawing, although to take advantage of this course is not essential, as Germán will explain the entire process of illustration from a photograph.

With respect to the materials you will need a computer with Adobe Photoshop and a graphic tablet, although you can also work with an iPad Pro.


4321 Students
294 Reviews
99% Positive ratings

German Gonzalez Ramirez

Teacher Plus
Graphic designer and digital illustrator

Germán González is a graphic designer trained at the Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana, although in 2014 he discovered digital illustration and since then he has used it to create portraits of the protagonists of his favorite films and series, adding all kinds of visual references and an explosion of very characteristic color of his work.

He is currently working as a graphic designer at Parque Explora, a science museum in the city of Medellin (Colombia), a work that combines with his activity as an independent illustrator collaborating with local and foreign publications.


  • U1


    • Presentation
    • Influences
  • U2

    Essential aspects

    • Face proportion
    • Theory of color
    • Aspects of Illumination
    • Essential aspects of color
    • Lighting basics
  • U3

    Steal to create

    • Sketch
    • Final details
    • Narrative complement Part 2
    • Narrative complement Part 1
    • Locker room
    • Hair and eyes
    • Defining shadows
    • First layers of paint
    • Creation of color palette
    • Brushes
    • Canvas
    • Archive morgue
  • U4

    The Devil Is In The Details

    • Export
    • Final retouching
  • FP

    Final project

    • Final project

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

    If you're a Plus or PRO 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

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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 or PRO member, when you complete a course 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
Digital Techniques for Illustrated Portraits. Illustration course by German Gonzalez Ramirez

Digital Techniques for Illustrated Portraits

A course by German Gonzalez Ramirez
Graphic designer and digital illustrator. Medellín, Colombia.
Joined August 2015
  • 99% positive reviews (294)
  • 4321 students