How to draw Audrey


1. Welcome

My name is Sheila Tan and I'm a portrait artist from Sydney, Australia. We will spend a day together where I show you the fundamentals of portraiture. Here are a few principles I'd like to share:

  • Observation is key! You may have heard this before, "Draw what you see. Not what you think you see."
  • There are no rules. There is no one secret formula to drawing. Different artists take different approaches. I will show you mine! Perhaps you will discover your own. "There is more than one way to skin a cat!" 
  • Trial and error. There is no 'getting it right', especially not at the first go. It's all about trial and error. Skills are built on constant and deliberate process
  • Have fun! This is the most important principle of all. Just enjoy it! your drawing is a journey. A story unfolding on paper. 


Get to know Audrey! Google some pictures of her. Watch a film! I watched Breakfast at Tiffany's the other day. It was brilliant! Take note of what you see - her facial expressions, the shape of her eyes, her slender frame. Get familiar with your portrait subject! 



2. light and shadow

Here is a quick demonstration on the basics of light and shadow. When we observe a subject, we always take into account the source of light that hits the surface. We use shading to replicate the effects of light and shadow in our drawing. 

The following resource (from Australian artist, VR Morrison) is a nice summary about light and shadow:

Download it here (PDF)



3. Thought Process

In this video, I think out loud and share my thought process on how I observe the person I'm about to draw. I hope this gives you an idea about how I approach the principle of observation. Perhaps you have your own thought process. Think out loud and give it a go!


4. Demonstration

In this timelapse video, I demonstrate how to draw Audrey. This is just one approach. Perhaps you can benefit and gain ideas from it - remember there are no rules. Create your own