Applying Charcoal Basics


Applying Charcoal Basics Lesson

In this lesson you will discover two applying charcoal basics. Now there are infinite possibilities for applying charcoal but the focus will be these two. I will go out on a limb and say we all have used charcoal or a pencil at some time to create a sketch, drawing or mixed media painting. However, it’s important to understand that how you use it, or apply it, will make or break your art.

I often see artists create soft, or weak lines using charcoal. This results in timid looking work. To be an expressive artist you need to fully understand the subtleties of how applying pressure will dramatically change your art.

What You Need To Know

Check out the demo image and see if you can spot the points below.

  • Understanding pressure and how soft & hard(intense) lines look
  • Try to create intense/expressive lines mixed with soft to create contrast
  • How expressive lines create energy
  • Be sensitive to the emotional side of intense lines
  • Avoid being too heavy, or too light
  • Understanding the viewers perspective
  • Understanding the physical aspect of applying charcoal

Your Goal

Now that you have a better idea of expressing with charcoal you can start by experimenting with a simple composition. keeping it simple will allow you to focus on the goal which is using charcoal to not just draw your subject, but to do it dynamically with a variety of strokes. This is the beginning of learning to use pressure into your surface and creating emotionally charged artwork.

Applying Charcoal Basics