Charcoal Portrait Course – The Soft Approach

Online Drawing Workshop

Thursdays 29th Oct – 19th Nov 2020 18:30 -21:00 | £120  £99

Charcoal Portrait by Christopher Clements

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Learn to use a soft approach to drawing portraits, perfectly suited to charcoal and create drawings with an expressive, painterly style.

Charcoal is a beautiful drawing medium, well suited to portraiture. It has a wide tonal range and can be creatively manipulated to stunning effect.

The delicacy of charcoal is its strength but can also make it a little tricky to use. The approach you’ll learn on this course will help you handle it confidently and get the most out of it by building it up in controlled layers.

The method can also be used to great effect for still life, landscape or life drawing. It is also very effective when used with paint especially for alla prima work.

You’ll produce a charcoal portrait study by working gently into the drawing in an open flexible manner allowing you to get things right at your own speed over the course of the drawing.

Each stage will be demonstrated by Christopher in the first part of the lesson showing you exactly what is needed at each stage. In the second part of each lesson you’ll work on your own portrait using reference images sent to you specially for the course.

What you’ll learn

  • A flexible, open approach to drawing portraits
  • Light, mid-tone and shadow
  • Developing atmosphere
  • Creating focus through selective rendering of detail

Whatever your levl of experience this approach to portrait drawing will have something for everyone. The class is limited to 8 students giving everyone plenty of feedback.

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How it Works

The workshop will be done using Zoom, you’ll be emailed a materials list, preparations and a reference photo plus a link to the session after booking via Eventbrite.

You’ll need an internet connection and webcam and the following materials:


  • 1 Piece of Canson Mi-Teintes pastel paper
  • 1 medium bristle brush
  • 1 soft brush
  • Nitram Fine Art Charcoal, B & HB (H is useful but not essential)
  • Willow charcoal
  • Putty rubber
  • Blending stump
  • Sanding block
  • Soft eraser
  • Sponge brush

Essential Info & Booking

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  • Date: Thursdays  29th October – 19th November 2020
  • Time: 18:30-21:00
  • Location: Online via Zoom
  • Price: £120    £99
  • Questions: Use Contact Form above right or email