Learn to Draw Cartoon Portraits | Emma Woodthorpe | Skillshare

Learn to Draw Cartoon Portraits

Emma Woodthorpe, Illustrator. Author. Artist.

Learn to Draw Cartoon Portraits

Emma Woodthorpe, Illustrator. Author. Artist.

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11 Lessons (22m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Materials

    • 3. What Makes a Cartoon

    • 4. Face Details Introduction

    • 5. Eyes

    • 6. Noses

    • 7. Face Shapes

    • 8. Mouths

    • 9. Bodies

    • 10. Drawing Your Subject

    • 11. Conclusion

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About This Class


Hello and welcome to this class, where today you will be learning to draw Cartoon Portraits! In this class I will take you through the foundations of what makes a cartoon, through to showing you different face and body elements, with lots of examples and options of each to choose from, before bringing it all together to create your finished portrait.

I've made the resources of face and body elements available as a PDF download, available in the project and resources tab. So make sure you check it out.

By the end of this class you will be able to confidently convert a photograph of a person into a cartoon portrait. These are great as gifts!

The materials you will need in this class are:

- Paper

- A Pencil

- An Eraser

- A Drawing Pen

- Something to Colour With

- Someone to Draw

I can't wait to see what you come up with, so don't forget to add your finished piece to the projects gallery!

If you like the class, please leave a review and feel free to share the class with anyone you think might be interested.

Meet Your Teacher

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Emma Woodthorpe

Illustrator. Author. Artist.


Hi I'm Emma Woodthorpe, also known on the internet by my business name Embers & Ink! I'm a freelance artist and illustrator based in Sheffield (UK). Using my background in Art and Literature I'm  currently writing and illustrating children's books!

I work in multiple media and have created a range of art using many mediums ranging from charcoal and pastel through to acrylics and oils to pencils and watercolours - and many more!

Find out about the Children's books I've created on my Author Website and follow my Author Instagram page @emmawoodthorpe for regular updates. You can find me on YouTube where I post weekly videos exploring my art and life as a full time creative. You can also join my exclusive gang over on Patreon where I offer a range of exclusive con... See full profile

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1. Introduction: Hello, I'm Emma, and welcome to this class where you will learn how to draw a cartoon portray its in this class. I'll take you through the basics of how to draw a car to import rate from initial concepts of what makes a cartoon right the way through two different face and body shapes and how you can put them together. By the end of this class, you will be able to confidently transform any photograph into a cartoon portrayed, and these make great gifts from the friends. So grab yourself comforting something to draw with and let's get going. 2. Materials: the materials that I used to create a cartoon portrait, sometimes very depending on the kind of Finnish result that I want booked. Some general materials that you'll need are some paper drawing pencils on a razor, the drawing pen something to color with. And, of course, you'll meet someone to draw to with the paper. I like to use a watercolor paper. I do like to use water color to color in my finished sketches. Watercolor paper is designed to be more robust than regular drawing paper, and it's made to be able to deal with quantities of water. But if you aren't going to use paints than this, isn't going to be a problem. As for pencils, either opt for a to H or a four age drawing pencil. And this is because as long as you don't press too hard, they don't leave marks behind on the paper. When you're raises, they're also light enough to paint on top of with watercolor without looking messy. Something to bear in mind if you're using watercolors, is that you need to raise any lines that you don't want before you paint, because you won't be able to raise them after the pain goes on dependant I use is a fine art of drawing pen with refillable ink on the ink that I use is waterproofing. That's because I like to do my line work over my pencil before I had my color. But if you're using a coloring medium that's less transparent and more solid, such as gouache, acrylics and pencils, you can always have the color first and then do the line work. Pin afterwards wants destroy, although if you do this, make sure you take a photograph of your initial pencil sketch and you'll be painting over the details and you'll need a reference picture to work from Leslie While you are practicing, I do recommend using a reference photo of a real person to practice your cartoon portrait's . Once you got used to practising cartoon portrait in your style, you'll then be able to be a bit more freestyle. And maybe you can start creating characters both to take the pressure off yourself in the beginning and use a photo. That way, you can always give the finished cartoon portrait as a gift to the person that you drew way 3. What Makes a Cartoon: So what makes a cartoon different from any of the form of portrait drawing? Firstly, a cartoon is a simplified version of your subject. You're not looking to add all of the details of a real person. Instead, you need to pick out the key elements of what makes them then so face shape, no size, expression, height, any special clothing. And these are just a few examples. Also, with cartoons you generally wants have Boulder movements with your pen. For example, plane circles for the eyes are suitable. Instead of focusing upon all of the intricacies of shading and details that you would use when doing a realistic drawing, you'll probably find this a bit difficult at first. But has your confidence and style develops your line? Work will become more confident on Boulder to cartoons. Also rely on gesture to conveying emotion, for example, raised eyebrows to show surprise. One raised eyebrow for smugness, narrowed eyes for sneakiness. He's just some examples. You may also use gestural marks as part of your line work for movement lines. So if a figure is on the move or spinning, for example, 4. Face Details Introduction: so that I don't just end up showing you how I draw cartoons and to stop you feeling like you have to draw your cartoon in my style. I'm going to show you a few different options for each face detail. And I'm going to set you the task of thinking of your own three options for each face detail that we do. One way of getting an idea of the types of features that you like is to look at the cartoons that you like yourself. The idea isn't to copy them, but so look at them for what works and analyze them and see what you like to see you don't like. 5. Eyes: eyes tend to be a variation of a circle by the circular, egg shaped or a squashed American football type shape. Oh, you could just have dots. The Charlie Brown cartoons by Charles Schulz are a great example of this. An important feature of the eye area are the eyebrows on the lids. Looking at these examples, see how changing the eyebrows on some of the eye shapes changes the gesture of the character. Your job now is to fill a practice page with as many different I combinations that you can think off if you're stuck. Copy some of mine that I've made available as a download in the projects and resource is area. Or you can do a quick Internet search for cartoon. I shapes and practice those just to get a feel for putting pen to paper. I'm just using regular drawing paper for this and saving my watercolor paper. My final piece. Now when you're finished, I want you to go away for five minutes. Go make yourself a drink, have a cup of tea and then come back with fresh eyes and circle the three of your favorite ice styles. Then put this practice sheet to one side and will refer to it later on 6. Noses: So for the noses. I've also made a reference sheet that you can download and refer to to have a look at the different ways that knows his can't deport rate If you can think of any of your own great abdomen when you finished filling your page full of all the nose options that you can think off again, go away from your drawing for five minutes and then come back with fresh eyes and choose three of your favorites, and you can put this with your other practice sheets, and we will use this later on. 7. Face Shapes: faces are generally an oval, but you can play with the shape, depending on the impact and the gesture of the character that you want to portray. For example, a more squared off shape for a more dependable character. Triangular for sly or speedy and circular. For open and friendly character. These aren't hard. Fast rules, however, is because we've already seen Eyes cam show a lot of this character information to okay, you know the drill. Fill your page with this many different face shapes that you can, using the reference sheets on the Internet. Help if you need to. Okay. When you fill the page, go and take a break and then come back with fresh eyes and pick your favorite three. You'll notice by now that you're starting to build the store of the favorite features that you created. When you play with putting these together, you'll be one step closer to developing your own style that you love 8. Mouths: the mouth that you choose to draw can convey a lot of feelings and emotions for the character. You may have quite a detailed mouth or simple, quick, gestural line or dot. You might want to think about the teeth and whether you want them showing a lock. And often a line under the mouth can indicate a lip without you having to draw it. Also, at this stage, you can think about whether you want to play with facial hair and B. It's for example, once again, I've made a reference of mouth shapes available in the resource is section so you can go and Philip your page, using any references that you might need to have different mouth options. And when you filled your page, go and have a break. Come back and you know what to do. Pick three of your favorites and put them with your other stock of practice drawings 9. Bodies: Generally, cartoon bodies tend to be much shorter than realistic human bodies that are classically around eight head lengths long in a cartoon ahead is usually much bigger in relation to the body than a realistic human body. But a lot of these will depends on the type of character that you're going for on the type of finish style evil. And that's depending on whether you actually want to have a body in your finished piece at all. For example, the characters out of the Cartoon South Park around to head lengths long in total, the body being about one head length. Where is the characters in the cartoon? Rick and Morty have bodies that are around 3 to 4 head lengths, long dependent on their age. The longer the body in head lengths, the close that you are to the classical eight headlines proportions of the classical human figure. Therefore, your cartoons will look more realistic. My own cartoon style has the bodies at around four head lengths long, minus the head so five in total. But it's completely a stylistic choice and is up to you if you're going for a less realistic body shape and again the shape of the body could be used to convey the character traits so square a solid and dependable triangle as shy or fast or if upended strong, like Superman Bush again. A lot of this will depend on the facial expressions, too. With the limbs, you can create jointed limbs with elbows and knees in roughly the right place, or go for a more cartoony Benji Lim, which is a bit freer and looser. Have a look at my body's reference sheets and think of some of the other ways that you could depict a body and Philip age. With these practice sketches, take a break, and when you come back, pick three of your favorite body styles. 10. Drawing Your Subject: So now comes the time that we're going to draw our finished subject. Firstly, gather all of your practice sheets together and keep them close the hand as we're going to be using our favorite elements during our finished piece and secondly, spends at least five minutes looking. Get your subjects photograph trying to pick out any details that you're going to use in your finish. Cartoon. Have a look at their face shape. The expression on their face may be indicated by their eyebrows on the way they hold their mouth. Did he have a certain hair style? Do they have any birthmarks or any special items of clothing, such as a favorite T shirt or a headscarf? So this is my image, and it's actually a picture of me and my mom. I'm just going to draw my mom in. This won't leave me out of it. Some things I have noticed that I'm going to add into my finished Carson portrait, The Color Purple. What did it focus on the style of her head? The fact that she's got really smiley eyes and then those into, and also she's got gold nearing, So these are all things I'm going to consider when I'm thinking about my finished drawing. I always tend to start by cartoon portrayed with the eyes and then build the face around them. When you're doing yours, choose your favorite style of eye and start from there. After the eyes, I move on to the nose as they're in close proximity, so it makes sense a game and you're doing yours. Choose your favorite style bus bear in mind. The rough shape of your subjects knows, too. I then work through my image, moving on first to the head shape, finding a hairstyle appropriate to my subject and then a mouth underbody, paying attention to any special or defining items of clothing or features. I then go over and waterproof ink about the pencil lines and then add the color. Cartoons often use bold block colors, so start there is a starting point. And then, with practice, you can develop your own color palette, and he's my finished piece. You can now go ahead and have a go using your favorite parts of the practice sketches that we did as references to build up your image. If it doesn't turn out as you expected, give yourself a break and have another go later. No famous cartoon artist ever developed their style straight away. When you finally got something that you're happy to share, please added to the project section of the class to help inspire other students. And so let me see what you achieved. I'd love to have a look. 11. Conclusion: so that's it. Now it might seem like I've condensed quite a lot of information into quite a short claps. But the main thing that will improve your cartoon portrait drawing ability is practice on allowing yourself to make mistakes so that you can see what works, see what doesn't and then learn from it. If you'd like to learn more about the classical human form and its proportions that we touched upon earlier in the class, I've got a class for that. Andi, if you'd like to learn some exercises to help improve your drawing confidence and ability, I've got a classic that see. In fact, if you head to my teacher profile, you'll see a full list of all of the classes that I do and see if there's anything that you'd like to take while you're there. If you'd like this class, please leave a review and feel free to share it with anyone you like. He's in my referral link below. Thank you so much for watching this class, and I can't wait to see your projects that don't forget to add them to the project tap. But until next time