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Pencil Portrait Project

Work in Progress of pencil drawing of a dogs face
It's no secret that I LOVE to draw dogs!

And the 'Pencil Portrait Project' was born from my huge passion to develop my drawing skills.

I have a bit of an issue with the phrase 'practice makes perfect' as this gives the impression that there is a perfect and singular correct outcome of practicing... and I don't think there is, but saying that I do believe that if we love something then we should strive to be our very best at it... practice so much that we become the absolute best that we can be - it's totally individual.

pencil drawing of a black labrador

The project has been up and running for 3 months now and I'm loving every single second of it, not least for all the beautiful dog faces that I get to study but also for the skills that I'm hopefully developing.

What I've learned so far...


A sharp pencil is everything!
Essential for drawing fine details and adding whiskers. I've got a good old fashioned pencil sharpener but it's not always successful so I've started using a scalpel for sharpening.

I've also added a mechanical pencil to my kit which has been amazing for adding teeny-tiny whisker detailing.

Layers - so many layers!
I start with a low grade B pencil to add shapes and shadow areas then I move up the grades to a darker and softer 8B pencil (that's the much loved short and stumpy pencil in the photo above)

Things I can't work without
Derwent Paper Stump Blenders - pretty self-explanatory, they blend my pencil marks - awesomely simple bit of kit but brilliant! 

Soft bristle brush - for removing any dust and eraser rubbings without smudging the pencil marks.

Thank you for all your commissions so far, you can check out all the details here:

 Have a great day!

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