Anatomy, Drawing, Painting

Make Your Drawn or Painted Faces More Realistic

July 9, 2014

By Alina Bradford

Okay, so you know the basics to drawing faces, but they just don’t look that real. Why? It’s all in the details. Take a look at the ideas below and soon you will have portraits that dazzle.

The Eyes


The eyes are the most important part of the face. If you don’t put enough detail into them then your whole portrait will look stiff.

Take a look at your eyes up close in the mirror. Notice how your tear ducts are like little pink seeds in the corners of your eyes. Also notice that your iris is not just a circle of color in a circle of white, but several circles of different colors, with specks of color within those. Take a look at how your eyelashes aren’t all the same length. They are longer in the middle than on the edges.

Use what you observe in your drawing or painting and make sure not to leave a detail out.

The Nose


The nose is infamous for being the hardest facial feature to draw. Once again, take a look at your own in the mirror.

Nose’s contours usually flow into the beginning of the eyebrow. Also, the edge of the nose, in a drawing or painting, is regulated by the edge of the eye and how close the eyes are to each other.

The nostrils are not simply holes in the base of the nose, but curves of flesh that are connected to the upper part of the lip.

To learn more see:

How Do You Draw a Nose?

The Mouth


There are a few basic thing to remember when drawing or painting a realistic mouth. First, the line in the inner edge of the lips is always the darkest in color. Second, the outer edge of the lip shouldn’t be a hard edge. It should be shaded area to define the shape. Third, remember that lips are not perfectly smooth; they have lines and wrinkles just like the rest of the face.

To learn more see:

How to Draw Human Faces Guide

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