Rendering and Shading
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Profile- Sad WomanShadowy face


Here are some examples of shading on the face. The profile sketch shows shadows in specific places on the woman's face. It looks like the light source is above the woman, which creates rather strong shadows under the nose, bottom lip, under the jawline, etc.

In the second sketch, the light source is distinctly from the right side. This leaves the other side of the woman's face deep in shadow. This also lends a more "moody" look to the drawing. Shading can really add a lot to a drawing. Not only does it give more depth and realism, it can create a real mood and attitude about the subject.

When drawing a face, be aware of these areas of shadow. There is more to a portrait than the lines that make up the eyes, nose, mouth, etc. Without the proper shadows rendered, the face will look flat.

One way to more clearly see where the shadows are on a face is to squint your eyes while looking at your subject. This will break down their face into shades of light and dark. Analyze what areas of the face have shadows, and what parts are highlighted. Don't get so caught up in drawing the individual features of the face that you don't notice the face's light and dark areas.

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