Let's Get Your Creative Juices Flowing!!!
Wanna create a BEAUTIFUL, EASY fairy drawing you can be proud of - even if you've never drawn before? You're in the right place!
Today I'm kicking off my FREE #50FunFabFairies drawing challenge and teaching YOU how to draw a beautiful fairy face, step by step on toned paper.
Never drawn a face before? No problem. Never drawn on toned paper before? It's EASIER than drawing on white paper! Don't have any fancy drawing supplies? Upcycle the back of a paper grocery bag into tan toned paper, and grab 2 colored pencils or crayons (black & white).
Simply click the button below to join me in my FREE 10-lesson, 20-week fairy drawing challenge for artists of ALL levels. The amazing classroom I have waiting for you includes expanded information and resources with full-length lessons not available on YouTube.
Wanna become a better artist? Do today's lesson (and every future lesson of the challenge) 5 times, making a few creative alterations of your choice, and watch your skills soar as you practice fairy eyes drawing, fairy ears drawing AND fairy hair drawing 50 different ways!
When you join the classroom link above, you'll get access to the above PDF of a score card to help you track your fairy drawing progress in the challenge!
Before we continue, super quick announcement: All product links are Affiliate. I may earn a small commission if you choose to order through these links but by law there is never any additional cost to the consumer for doing so. I thank you for your support.
I always have a blast bringing new and returning artists into our Awesome Art School community to jumpstart their creativity through a drawing challenge. AND, since one of my total obsessions is fairies and fantasy art - this is going to be super FUN for all of us.
To complete today's lesson in the #50FunFabFairies drawing challenge, you'll need a piece of tan toned paper (or the back of a grocery bag- even a piece of printer or notebook paper is fine!), plus a black China Marker and white China Marker. If you don't have China Markers - don't sweat it, just use black and white colored pencils or crayons. You could also totally do this entire drawing on scrap paper with a pen or pencil. The main thing is that YOU DRAW - not stress over the supplies!
To initially sketch a fairy face, I grabbed my favorite Blackwing pencil. If you're interested in purchasing special drawing pencils, these are to die for. One pencil basically replaces an entire pencil set and can give you so many values when shading a face or any object you love to draw.
They are expensive though, so if you're on a budget - just use whatever pencil you have on hand!
I begin this drawing like all my semi-realistc face drawings -with my whimsical face drawing guidelines. These are SO important to keep your faces looking proportional!
If you need a copy of my face drawing guidelines - the PDF is available to you for free in the #50FunFabFairies Challenge Classroom over at Awesome Art School.
After your guidelines are marked, it's time to start placing your fairy's facial features.
I LOVE working with photos of faces for drawing reference. Sometimes I look at pictures of real people, sometimes I look at other artists' drawings, art books, you name it!
When I look at these face drawing references, I zero in on things like unique facial features, face shading patterns, hairstyles, accessories, etc. I use those pieces of information as "thought starters" to get me thinking in a different way visually.
I never want to steal another artist's work and am a huge stickler on crediting the artists who inspire me.
The fairy drawing images I've selected to use as inspiration for today come from the guidance in one of Christopher Hart's books. I LOVE his interpretations of fairies and fanciful creatures!
The other fairy drawing reference is a piece of digital art I found on Pinterest with no artist's name attached. I'm using elements from both images to inspire me for today's lesson.
The eyes on Christopher Hart's fairy are especially interesting and what drew me to this face drawing reference photo in the first place. Once these are sketched in - you should have something in front of you that looks like an alien! If you do- you're doing amazing!!
Lots of students have asked me how to draw fairy ears. They're really quite simple. If you click over to the video to see this example of fairy ears drawing in action, it will really help you along.
Next up... hair! If you're not sure how to draw hair, I've got you, and break this down step by step for you as well. I'm using Christopher Hart's drawing as a guide to create some wispy bangs and a simple, sketchy bun piled on top with flyaways. SO cute!!
Next it's time to get some detail added in the upturned eyes we started. Again, if you don't know how to draw eyes, this project is TOTALLY for beginners, and I'm holding your hand the entire way in this fairy drawing video.
I am all about using a circle template for the irises and pupils. Of course we could spend time working on drawing perfect circles, but I've got WAY better things to do, and I'm sure you do too!
Use a template, and let's move on to the next step. Look at what a difference the eyes make, huh? Now she's comin' to life!
I'm keeping the nose super simple for this girlie today, and am only adding a squished oval on each side for notstrils. I also sketched in a bridge line for the nose as well, but only lightly because that will be part of our face shading when it's time.
The lips in the Pinterest fairy drawing reference are just luscious! It's a super pouty, sexy look that I love - so took a little inspiration from that to create my own.
Next, it's time to fine tune everything and start erasing all the sketchy guidelines so we can add some shading and dimension to this fairy face. If you don't have a favorite eraser, mine is in the pic above, off to the right. It's called the vanish eraser, and I just LOVE it.
If you've never worked with toned paper before, the coolest thing about it is we only have to add the really dark parts and the really light parts of the value scale, because the paper itself already gives us the midtone we need! That means less face shading for us, and the sketch takes much less time to complete.
Cool, right? In a lot of ways, shading on toned paper is actually easier than shading on white paper. If you're new to working with toned paper, and want to learn more about the value scale, check out this playlist on YouTube.
I started with my black china marker to basically outline the entire drawing. Then I add some scribble scrabble shading in areas where I want there to be shadows. If you need help with learning how to shade a face - don't worry, simply follow me in today's drawing tutorial. It's all SUPER step by step and easy to follow.
Simple right? I TOLD you this was gonna be an EASY fairy drawing that anyone could do!!
Adding white highlights at the end of a drawing project is probably my favorite part! Again, no need to know where these highlights are supposed to go. Just follow me, and we'll do it together.
If you love a little extra drama like me, grab some black and white paint pens, and I'll show you which areas to hit to really make things pop.
Thanks for hanging out with me today!! I REALLY hope you are drawing along with me and plan to participate in this fairy drawing challenge. We're going to have SO much fun together!
If you're OBSESSED with fairies and fantasy art like me, you might just LOVE the Celtic Collective over at Awesome Art School. It's an art membership my Scottish bestie, Lucy Brydon, and I run together!
You might ALSO enjoy our podcast, 1Scot,1 Not. We talk about everything under the sun to do with Scotland - whether it's historical, fantasy, whatever. Just a quick warning - we have a blast and are totally ourselves on the podcast, which means there is some drinking and swearing.
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"Karen is flipping hilarious and she's very real...I like the way she teaches in a way that really gives you confidence, whether you're a beginner or advanced there's always something new to learn!"
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Karen, you are absolutely fabulous! You make me feel like I can draw anything. I have recently retired and finally have the time to do some of the art that I have loved since I was in school. I am really at the beginning of my art journey and I hope to learn as much as I can. Thank you for all you do.