How to sketch realistic eyes using Charcoal ?

Updated: Feb 15

Rad Educators is a 1-year program intended to help beginner artists learn step-by-step techniques from professional artists across different mediums. This is in no way sponsored or promoted by any particular Art Brand.

Amit Kumar Meena is Rad Educator for Sketching - Charcoal.

In this tutorial, I've shown how to make realistic eyes using charcoal powder and an eraser as the main tools.

Materials Required:

1) Charcoal powder 2) Camlin soft charcoal pencil 3) Eye shadow makeup brush 4) Lip filler makeup brush 5) Mono eraser

6) Kneaded eraser

7) White gel pen for highlights

8) 170 GSM textured drawing paper

Step 1 :

Draw the outline of the eye proportionately. You may use a graph for accuracy.

Step 2 :

After the drawing of the eye is completed. Lighten the outline using a kneaded eraser.

Step 3:

Take an eye shadow brush and put a little amount of Charcoal Powder in it, spread the charcoal softly on the eyebrow

Step 4 :

Similarly, spread charcoal for the skin part as well. The brush shouldn't be parallel to the paper. Take charcoal powder on the tip of the brush and spread evenly. Don't rub the brush on the paper as it might damage the paper. Use gentle strokes.

Step 5 :

Make highlights by erasing with Mono eraser & Kneaded eraser. These will be thin strokes. Observe the direction of the strokes from your reference.

Step 6 :

Use a sharp charcoal pencil to draw the eyelashes and eyebrow, use an eraser in between for the highlights in the eyelash. The more layers the better, it gives the drawing a realistic effect. 

Step 7 :

Make sure you're not using too much pencil or else it will become too dark. Use a white gel pen to create the highlight in the eyeball.

Step 8 :

Use Mono eraser to make the final highlights, repeat all the steps i.e add layers of charcoal powder, highlight with eraser and add few pencil strokes to get a realistic effect to the eye. 

Important Tip : The tools I’ve shown are not important, you can choose any similar grade charcoal pencil and charcoal powder which is easily available to you. 

Techniques matter, tools don’t. So, start practicing and practice makes everything possible. 

Check the video here -

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