Charcoal Drawing Techniques:

  • Charcoal can be used in the same way you use a pencil to draw and shade anything, but it’s best suited to to more expressive types of shading like hatching.
  • Charcoal can also be used to do the preliminary drawings of a painting on canvas.
    • Once you’ve blocked in your shapes and values, spray with a workable fixative and start painting. Turning your charcoal stick on its side and filling in major areas of a subject is a great way to train your brain to see shapes rather than contours.
  • One of my favorite thing to do with charcoal, however, is gesture drawings. It’s the perfect tool for executing the large, sweeping strokes needed to capture a gesture.
    •  Use a nice chunk and a big pad of cartridge paper to get the most out of your drawings.