Introduction to Portraits with India Ink and Nibs

A course by José Rosero
Visual artist and teacher. Bogota, Colombia.
Joined April 2019
, Visual artist and teacher

Learn to interpret, draw and add personality to a subject from scratch

  • Spanish with subtitles in English
  • 99% Positive reviews (140)
  • 2531 students
Introduction to Portraits with India Ink and Nibs

Learn to interpret, draw and add personality to a subject from scratch

Spanish with subtitles in English
  • 99% Positive reviews (140)
  • 2531 students
  • Online and at your own pace
  • Audio: Spanish
  • Level: Beginner
  • 18 Lessons (2h 24m)
  • Available from the app
  • Spanish, English, Portuguese, German, French, Italian
  • Unlimited access forever

A portrait is not just the anatomical reproduction of a face, it is knowing how to capture and capture the features, essence and gestures of a person. For this there is a process prior to drawing, and it is the investigation of the character. It is important to get to know him to know what he transmits. The versatile artist, José Rosero, manages to transfer emotions beyond the canvas or paper and tells a story with each of his portraits.

In this course, José will teach you the general, conceptual and poetic context of the illustrated portrait, as well as the methodology for you to make the portrait of a character step by step. You will focus on drawing the face, as well as the depth of its gestures. You will learn the techniques to create your illustration with graphite pencils and Chinese ink.

About this course

Course table of contents

  • U1
    U1. Introduction
  • U2
    U2. Approach to the portrait and materials to use
  • U3
    U3. Basic forms and gestures in a portrait
  • U4
    U4. Drawing and inking of our portrait
  • U5
    U5. Conservation and digitization techniques
  • FP
    FP Final Project
View details

José will introduce himself, explain his beginnings and later career as a versatile artist. He will tell you what inspires him and what his greatest artistic references are.

You will start by introducing the portrait as a concept, seeing a retrospective about its evolution and context.

You will choose the person you are going to portray. You do not have to meet the condition of an iconic beauty, but it is better to choose a face that appeals to you. It is good that you inquire into his biography: the more you know about the character, the better the result.

You will learn the technique of inking by seeing the multiple ways to use the pen, although in this course you will work mostly online and plot. You will see the different patterns one by one, as well as the different shades.

You will create your sketch, simplifying the head in geometric figures. You will learn to draw every part of the face paying attention to the shape and structure, and seeing tips to reproduce gestures and expressions. You will see how to make the correct proportions, then you will focus on identifying and drawing the special features of the character.

Start your composition! You will place the basic structure in a vertical A4, in which you will be accommodating in a proportionate way the geometric figures belonging to each anatomical part. On these, you will draw each feature.

You will learn to generate the volumes, lights and shadows with the F and HB pencils, which will help you create the gestures of the character. Next, you will begin the pen-inking process: first you will delineate, then you will make the patterns and then you will accentuate certain parts.

Finally, you will erase the parts that do not work for you. José will advise you on how to clean, finalize and fix your illustration. Then it will teach you how to digitize your piece with the scanner and give you a couple of tips to use Adobe Photoshop and optimize your file for printing.

What is this course's project?

You will make the portrait of a recognized person, preferably a musician, artist or writer.

Projects by course students

Who is it for?

The course is designed for illustrators, cartoonists and self-taught, anyone who has an interest in learning to make portraits.

What you need

Although the workshop is open to all concerned, it is preferable to have basic knowledge of drawing.

As for materials, you will need 2H, F and HB graphite pencils, bread crumb eraser (or moldable eraser), nib, black Chinese ink and A4 papers (preferably with some percentage of cotton).


2531 Students
140 Reviews
99% Positive ratings

José Rosero

A course by José Rosero

Visual artist and teacher

José Rosero is a visual artist and teacher. His job is to approach the image from different points. He is now the director of CASATINTA, a space dedicated to workshops, exhibitions and events around the visual arts. He also coordinates the Fig. International Congress of Illustration, of which seven versions have already been made in FILBO (2011-2017).

He has made several exhibitions, conferences and workshops based on his own research participating in different events in Colombia and in other countries such as Argentina, Spain, Brazil, Ecuador, Venezuela, Mexico and Chile.


  • U1


    • I introduce myself
    • My influences
    • What will we do in the course
  • U2

    Approach to the portrait and materials to use

    • What is a portrait?
    • Research and selection of photos
    • materials
    • The inking technique
  • U3

    Basic forms and gestures in a portrait

    • Basic forms: head
    • Basic forms: eyes
    • Basic forms: nose
    • Basic forms: mouth
    • Proportions
    • Special features
  • U4

    Drawing and inking of our portrait

    • Locate the essentials on paper
    • Light and volumes
    • Now to ink!
  • U5

    Conservation and digitization techniques

    • Preservation
    • Digitization
  • FP

    Final Project

    • Introduction to Portraits with India Ink and Nibs

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Introduction to Portraits with India Ink and Nibs. A Illustration course by José Rosero

Introduction to Portraits with India Ink and Nibs

A course by José Rosero
Visual artist and teacher. Bogota, Colombia.
Joined April 2019
  • 99% Positive reviews (140)
  • 2531 students