Expressive Little Faces: Proportions, Painting, Personality | Amarilys Henderson | Skillshare

Expressive Little Faces: Proportions, Painting, Personality

Amarilys Henderson, Watercolor Illustrator, Design Thinker

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14 Lessons (35m)
    • 1. Intro to Expressive Little Faces

    • 2. Simplifying the Face

    • 3. Facial Proportions

    • 4. Face Shapes

    • 5. Mouths

    • 6. Eyes

    • 7. Noses

    • 8. Putting Your Face Together

    • 9. How I Do Faces

    • 10. Facial Skin Tones

    • 11. Painting Little Faces, Part 1

    • 12. Painting Little Faces, Part 2

    • 13. Final Tips for Your Faces

    • 14. Show Us & Closing

112 students are watching this class

About This Class


Ever wanted to feel more confident in drawing faces and develop a character style? This charming class is designed to help you make your own collection of Expressive Little Faces!. It's great for those who'd like to polish their skills to impress their friends or great clients. Being able to do faces well impacts how your entire line of creative work is perceived and how widely it can be marketed.

Topics discussed include:

  • Facial proportions--what goes where on the face and how much space in between?
  • Factors and variables to consider as you choose place facial features
  • Communicating expression in faces
  • Paint color mixing for various skin tones
  • Illustrating faces in watercolor 
  • Little details that make a big difference

Ready to get started? Watch, sketch, and paint with Amarilys!

Amarilys Henderson is an illustrator who has licensed editorial, fashion, stationery, home dec and surface design illustration.  Lately, though, she's on a greeting kick.


Class Outline

  • Creating better faces. Painting great human faces improve the perception and marketability of your art portfolio. In Amarilys’ class, you’ll learn to paint more interesting, personable faces. Amarilys will teach you how to handle proportions and expression, and how to apply her secret “little details,” which will bring your little faces to life. You can use any medium you like. So whether you like working with pencil, acrylic, or watercolor, these online art classes are for you!
  • Simplifying the face. Amarilys shows you how minimal lines and colors can bring a face to life. She’ll use photo examples, and change the contrast to give you a clear understanding of where you should focus when you set out to create a recognizable face.
  • Identifying proportions. Unless you have experience taking fine art courses, facial proportions can be counterintuitive. In this class, you’ll learn how to correctly place features with an easy-to-follow guide that neatly divides the face into quadrants. Amarilys will walk you through which features correspond to different sections, and how to place a person’s eyes, nose, and mouth. That way, you’ll end up with a symmetrical, beautiful face.
  • Creating realistic facial shapes. Amarilys will talk about the basic mechanics of creating facial features. She’ll explain the five facial shapes, and the different artistic changes you can make to chin lines, ears, and hairlines, which will make your faces unique and give them personality.
  • Creating mouths. You will learn about the variety of mouth shapes, and the traits that differentiate them. You’ll also learn that “a hint of teeth” is better than a fully realized set. And you’ll find out where to add lines to create more individuality or suggest facial movement in art pieces.
  • Creating eyes. Amarilys believes that creating a lifelike set of eyes is key to creating an expressive little face. She will show you how the shape of an eye changes, depending on where it is looking (and where you are looking at it). She will also discuss eyebrows, eyelids, and eyelashes, including how their shape and structure play an important role in how an eye appears.
  • Creating noses. Noses can be difficult because they are a collection of shadows, so outlining them doesn’t always work. You’ll follow along as Amarilys makes a variety of noses with just a few simple strokes, and discusses her secrets for avoiding over-pronounced noses and other common mistakes. 
  • Making skin tones. For anyone interested in working in watercolor, Amarilys will discuss the paints and brushes that she uses to make natural-looking flesh tones, including how she mixes pigment with water to get the right shades. She will also explain how to use a hint of color to suggest shadows, and create more natural looking expressions.
  • Putting your face together. Amarilys will walk you through her process as she works on a series of different faces, adding detail and lines to create personality and expression. She will discuss line quality, and how different thicknesses can suggest different ethnicities and genders. Finally, she’ll touch on artistic styling, and show you the tools and techniques she uses to put a personal spin on her creations.