Fundamental Fur Techniques in Coloured Pencil | Amie Howard | Skillshare

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Fundamental Fur Techniques in Coloured Pencil

teacher avatar Amie Howard, Coloured Pencil Wildlife Artist

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

6 Lessons (13m)
    • 1. Class Intro

    • 2. Fundamentals

    • 3. The Fur Technique

    • 4. Grouping Fur Lines

    • 5. Combining Fur Lines and Shading

    • 6. Conclusion

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About This Class

Creating fur in coloured pencils is the first, vital step in drawing wildlife and pet portraits realistically.

In this class I will show you the technique you need to create natural, realistic looking fur. The technique demonstrated can be applied to any length and any colour of fur so this is a real foundation skill for all your future projects.

The pencils and paper you use isn't important for this class - it's building that technique and skill - so grab your sketchbook and any coloured pencils (even graphite!) and practice this technique with me.

I've also included a PDF which you can download and keep on your tablet or computer for easy reference and to practice the technique whenever you feel like it.

Don't forget to upload your practice drawings to the project gallery for feedback. For new classes and info, make sure you click follow so you're first to know when the next class goes live!

Meet Your Teacher

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Amie Howard

Coloured Pencil Wildlife Artist


Hello, I'm Amie! Professional artist based in Hawkinge, Kent, I specialise in creating beautiful, hand drawn wildlife illustrations in coloured pencil.

​Teaching is becoming a growing passion of mine, with an ever growing following on both YouTube and Patreon, teaching people the tips and techniques I have learnt over the past 7 years.

​I love using and teaching people about Coloured Pencils – it’s such a relaxingmedium to work with and one which I find extremely addictive.

Ever since I can remember, I have always had a pencil, crayon or tube of glitter in my hand and drawn to my hearts content. I studied art and design at GCSE and A-Level but never took my studies any further. In 2012 I picked up my love of art a... See full profile

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1. Class Intro: hi friends I'm Amy and I love using and teaching people about colored pencils is such a relaxing medium toe work with on one which I find extremely addictive. And I hope that you will find that, too. I specialize in creating realistic world life Portrait's with colored pencils and that that's what my skill share classes are focused around in this skill share class. We're taking an in depth look at the most vital part of creating any wildlife or pet portrait in colored pencil, the for I'm going to show you. My exact technique for creating natural realistic looking for the technique demonstrated can be applied to any length and color or first, So this is a real foundation skill for all off your future projects. The pencils and paper you use isn't important for this class. It's building that technique and skill. So grab your sketchbook and any colored pencils, even graphite, and practice this technique with me. 2. Fundamentals: we're gonna take a look at the basic fundamentals for creating your for. So I'm going to use a dark CPR fabric estoppel occur most pencil, because this is the easiest to show up on video footage. But obviously, as you're creating offer, you would use the corresponding colors on will cover all of the different colors off for and everything in further tutorials. So to start off with, I've got a really nice sharp point to my pencil on. I've achieved this point by using my swordfish. I can't sharp knives. The crank handle sharp now, and I find that these give the best results. But you can use whatever you feel happy or comfortable with using, So gotta realize that sharp point. Now, the first thing that we do when creating for is actually go in and shade some Baisley is so you're not going straight in on adding fair lines all over. You're going in first and creating some really, really soft, smooth shading. So to do that, I just like to you hold my pencil quite far back. I like to hold it around the mid point on. The reason I do that is so that you don't put too much pressure through your pencil. Putting too much pressure through your pencil will create a little bit of an inconsistent tone, and you'll end up layering too heavy and damaging the tooth of the paper. So you want to use a nice light town on, and in order to do that, I hold the pencil quite far back like this. Holding it quite far forward would produce that really hard pressure and that uneven time. So holding it around here just fairly loosely and I just like to shade back and forth in the direction that the floor is going. So if we're saying that Alfa is coming straight up, so it's coming in the opposite direction, then what we would do is just lightly and loosely shade coming in in that direction. So you're just shading back and forth in that direction. You can see in just building a really nice time, the precious mice and consistent, and you would just build this until you're happy with the tone for this murder. And that's the basic principle off shading your beginning. And that's the basic principle off shading on starting off your first, So it doesn't actually start with all of those lines actually starts with the shading like this just really, really soft and gentle. Really like pressure on your pencil on. The reason I like to use off pressure again is so that we have this nice, consistent, even tone, but so that you can build your layers and your color. It's so going in with a heavy pressure to begin with might get you the tone that you want, but it's not going to look as a deep and fluffy as possible. But by layering up your pencils like this and creating layers and layers and slowly building your tone, you're gonna achieve a much more fluffy, dense look on a much more natural left as well. And also, you don't damage that the tooth your paper so you can find that you add almost infinite layers off colored pencil down. He just wanted to continue building the time until you're happy and you don't have to Just use the one color for your base like this. You can use lots of colors you can use two or three. It can use mori canoes as many layers to add to your base and shading like this, as you want before going into your detail so you could add, like a warm gray one, a cold gray one. Then you convention into like creams. If he was creating a really light colored fur and just really gently shade until you've got the color that you desire for your base before you go in and that all off those really juicy details, you can see just how I'm holding my pencil really lightly, just moving it back and forth just to build early. Nice, soft, even tone like that. And that's the basis before we aren't in the details. 3. The Fur Technique: So now that we have our base down, we built a really, really lovely soft tone. We can go in and add our details by adding in at some fair lines, we can add in all of that detail on all of that lovely texture. So third lines are just lines that are created with your pencil on to do those lines. What I like to do is take in my sharp pencil so again, once pretty nice and shop, and to start off, I like to point down the pencil onto the papers. So you're looking at your reference photo and you want to locate the route off the first line. So where the the for sits against the skin, in essence, and then what I like to do is look at the direction that the first going again, that sort of demoted by your base layer. So we're gonna use this directions. We're gonna come upwards like we've shaded down here. And I like to just point the pencil down, not using to harder pressure just a really quite loose like pressure. And you can see that I'm holding my pencil a little bit closer to the tip then I was when I was shading. But for this on kind of holding it close t not like, really close like this, but quite close so that we have a little bit more control over a pencil. So you point the pencil down onto the paper, you look at the direction that your flow is going and as you are moving in that direction, what we're going to do is move the pencil along the paper and lift it towards the end off the stroke. Do you want to do that fairly quickly? You don't do it as slow as I did there. So you just want to point the pencil down a place and pressure on left and you're creating is really soft flick E type lines. So all I'm doing here is just moving my pencil along the paper and lifting up. So during this motion, as we move our pencil on to the paper and it just creates is really nice lines, you don't necessarily have to always come off this angle as well. You can come off on up, but doing that creates is really soft edge, and it looks really nice and tape it, and when you build it together, you build a really nice soft, fluffy, dense looking for 4. Grouping Fur Lines: So from that technique off pointing the pants or on moving a pencil along in the for direction and lifting. That's the basic for line Prince ports, and now we need to apply that and create a little patch like this. So in order to do that, what I like to do is just work fairly quickly. So you want to work fairly quickly in adding in ill fair lines, and you want to keep them. You don't want to do it like a parallel line off them. What you don't want to end up with is lines that are quite parallel and really kind of rigid looking like this along the top. Here, you want to keep the line. I wish they start varied, and as you work quickly, you'll see that your forgets this really kind of natural bent, which is perfect because that's what you're after after this kind of overlap effect, so that all of your for lines off overlaps you can create is really nice, dense area. The same applies if you don't have a dense petrol further you're working on. So if you're working on something that is quite sparse enough for lines, you still want that kind of natural kind of bend, but you'd obviously space your for lines quite far apart. So building upon this, if you're working on a really thick, really kind of luscious patch will further is really kind of deep looking that you could really sink your fingers into You want to group your for lines pretty close together, and you want to work fairly quickly. To build a patch of further is really closely compacted together. And you'll notice that when you compact to your for together like this that it will look a lot darker, which is perfect if you wanting to build really dark tone first. And if you have a further is quite loose and quite struggle, the sort of like the hair that you'd find on the nose of an animal or something like that, then you would space your for lines quite far apart again. You want to keep that natural bend so that you keep this off natural free look to the for. If you created lines that were really rigid, your for would look really unnatural and it wouldn't look right at all. 5. Combining Fur Lines and Shading: So what you would do is you would combine that your shading and your for lines. So you've ended a really, really nice shaded base layer in the direction that you're for is going for base layer is used to help you navigate your way around in different directions off the for and then you would add it, your firm lines over the top off your base layer. So on this example, what I would do here is just add in some for lines over the top, keeping your felons really nice and lists, and you can build a really soft natural looking for So don't worry if you don't have the speed. So if you're not doing it as fast as I am doing here, that is absolutely okay. If you start off slow, just make sure that you get the motion and that flick Perfect. That's what you're after. You want that flicked of lying? You don't want to end up with a really static line all the way because that's gonna make it look really unnatural. You wanna concentrate on gathering this sort flicked motion with your pencil? An experiment in holding your pencil different ways as well because it can produce different results. So experiment with holding a pencil a little bit further back and see what kind of results you get on experiment. Withholding it really close to the tip. So you've got ultimate control and just see what you can produce. A swell you'll find Holding your pencil in different ways like this produces different weights off line, which will be perfect for different types of. For so, Holding a pencil quite far toward the tip like this would be perfect if you're trying to create a really dark patra for, because you can get a much stronger color. But if you offer is a lot lighter in tone, then holding it quite far back produces a really soft effect, so that would be perfect for really liked for it. Also be perfect for long. For and again, holding it quite close to the tip would be perfect for short for so you want to really experiment with the different positions off holding your pencil in creating your types of for But again, just concentrate on getting that flicked and to your for line before you gather speed. Once you've got that perfected, then you can concentrate on adding that them really quickly and seeing how good your results are 6. Conclusion: Onda. That is pretty much it for the basic for technique. It's a really simple two step process. Just adding it down. Your basically is using some shading really, really like pressure and then adding in your for lines again using, unlike pressure if necessary, or harder pressure depending on the color, like trying to depict. I really hope that you have enjoyed this tutorial and let me know how you get on with this project but up loading your images to the class project files. So now we have this basic fundamental for technic down, you are now ready to move on to creating some different colored fares.