A group for people who draw or paint portraits.  Ask questions and share your favorite tips and techniques. 

Members: 360
Latest Activity: Aug 28


Hello and Welcome to the Portraits Group!


This is the place to share your portrait art and discuss all aspects of making portraits.


If you would like to share your portrait art, you can either post in the Show & Tell thread or start your own discussion by clicking the big blue "Add a Discussion" button at the bottom of the Discussion Forum section of this page.. You will likely get more views and replies if you start your own discussion.

If you would like a critique or want some advice on a specific work-in-progress, you can start your own discussion by clicking here:

If you would like to share progress shots of your portrait art in its various stages, that's great too! Tutorials are welcome!

If you upload your art for critique or Show & Tell, please also tell us about the art: for instance, tell us the size, medium, what the piece means to you, etc. If you want a critique please also tell us what areas of the artwork you are unsure about and what you were trying to achieve (realism? expressionism? etc).

Click here to learn how to upload images into your forum posts (which is important so that people can see your art within the post, rather than as an attachment link beneath your post).

Just two simple rules:

  • Please keep all discussions relevant to portraits and all aspects of making a portrait.
  • Be friendly and considerate in your posts.

Thanks for joining & have fun!

Discussion Forum

50th Wedding Anniversary

Started by Richard Giordano Aug 28. 0 Replies

This was done from black and white (the altered photos as the originals were from the 1950s and were not in the best of condition) and combined, into one portrait..I had to do a lot of leg work to combine the original.I drew this coloured pencils…READ MORE


Started by Richard Giordano. Last reply by Richard Giordano Aug 28. 2 Replies

This was interpreted from a magazine ad for Olia Garnier.For the the original coloured version, this can be found at the following link:…READ MORE

Tom Thomson

Started by Richard Giordano Aug 28. 0 Replies

This was done from a photo, the original below:…READ MORE

Drawing a pencil portrait from an old photograph

Started by Angela Harrison. Last reply by Angela Harrison Jan 14. 5 Replies

I have started drawing a portrait in pencil and the preliminary sketch is beginning to form, but wondering if you can draw sketches of the eyes, nose, lips and ears in various stages then post during a work in progress?  Here is the preliminary…READ MORE

Getting the subject's look

Started by Flo Adar. Last reply by Carla Cryptic Oct 10, 2018. 2 Replies

I'm uploading a source photo of my niece's daughter.  She's 11 and this photo was suggested to me by her mother. I don't usually do children.  But the beautiful photo and the braids charmed me so I thought I would give it a try.  I've worked on it…READ MORE

Skin, skin and more skin... not to mention hair! ;)

Started by Carla Cryptic. Last reply by Carla Cryptic Nov 19, 2017. 12 Replies

For a long time (since I first held a pencil in my grubby little toddler hand), I've been working through a process which would allow me to paint, draw, or sculpt what I see in the mirror and all around me.  I am racially mixed (black, white,…READ MORE

Tags: #people, #portraits, #self-portraits, textures, #hair

Practice Practice Practice ....all done with Andrea

Started by Brenda Morgado. Last reply by Brenda Morgado May 26, 2017. 6 Replies

I'm going to do portrait after portrait hopefully to improve . This is my niece Andrea By my husband's sister , Andrea is 46 . Here is the reference and my first wip…READ MORE

My grandson's pastel portrait

Started by Brenda Morgado. Last reply by Brenda Morgado May 24, 2017. 5 Replies

Hi , this is an 8x10pastel of my grandson Max 8 yrs old . I love to do pastel portraits and everyone tells me I am good ...BUT my daughter never likes any I do ...So I really want to practice and learn how to improve my likeness of my subjects .…READ MORE

La Priere after Bouguereau

Started by Mike Fone. Last reply by Robert (Bob) Murray Apr 10, 2017. 5 Replies

This is a copy from the French artist Bouguereau. You can find the original painting on the Art Renewal site. I find the lighting especially fascinating here. You may notice just how important tonal values and turns are in this painting. Dare I say…READ MORE

The Indian Man

Started by Mike Fone. Last reply by Marguerite Valdez Dec 6, 2016. 8 Replies

Oils on 12 x 16 inch canvasI asked my neighbours son if I could take his photo for a painting. He said yes.So, zoom in, snap snap and away. I set too with the brush and soon there it was. Some days it just happens. I haven't got it figured yet and…READ MORE

Comment Wall


You need to be a member of Portraits to add comments!

Comment by Mo on January 26, 2015 at 10:26pm

I tried a portrait of Abe Lincoln in charcoal. He has an interesting face. I am OK with the first attempt, but I need to work on the proportions.

Comment by Mo on January 26, 2015 at 10:25pm

Comment by R L Oliver on January 16, 2015 at 3:20pm

Patricia, when I have purchased Bristol Board paper it has always come in sheets. I haven´t seen anything in a pad, but then art supplies here in Cali are fairly limited to begin with.  Some great alternative paper I have recently discovered is called Bockingford Block by St. Cuthberts Mill. It is the highest quality paper I have found outside of Arches. One type has a velour finish that they say is most exceptional.

Comment by Patricia Kim Worsley on January 15, 2015 at 8:16pm

Hi, can somebody please enlighten me ... im pretty uneducated when it comes to art supplies and went to an art supplies store for some Bristol board paper, they only had big sheets, nothing in a pad form. My question is how many different types are there and what would you use the different kinds for? Also which is the best one for pencil portraiture and for working with coloured pencils? Thank you all :)

Comment by R L Oliver on January 7, 2015 at 11:27pm

I am new to this group but have a longstanding interest in drawing and painting faces and folk, i.e. human beings. Don´t have any direction with my work and I guess that is what I am needing most at this point. Any ideas or suggestions on direction finding?

Comment by Pris Hardy on August 7, 2014 at 2:53pm

Hi Patricia -  I have found that there are times when it is easier to work sort of backwards.  I use a soft brush, dip it into graphite powder and brush on a light layer where I need it. Then I go back with my kneaded eraser and start pulling out highlights. The highlights give me an idea of where I need to deepen the shadows with my pencil.  The brush creates a soft look, so practice with it a bit to see if its the look you really want.  Good luck! and Have fun!!  Looking forward to seeing the finished product =]

Comment by Laurel Nichols on August 5, 2014 at 7:12pm

Hi Patricia, are you using a pencil? my experience on that was to start and end your each stroke with less strength. Also erase the joint part and redo it could reduce the effect.

Hope this helps :)

Comment by Patricia Kim Worsley on August 5, 2014 at 11:12am

Hi guys! Can anyone pls give me some advice? Im drawing a lady with really long hair, my question is how do I get that smoothness, the hair is so long im finding it difficult to avoid those joining choppy lines you get from not being able to do one long stoke at a time? Would appreciate any advice on this .... thanks in advance! :)

Comment by Bette-Jane Schnabel on June 13, 2014 at 5:41pm

I would know this cute gal as a Swede! My family roots are in Stavanger Norway.

Comment by Christina Wood on June 13, 2014 at 5:32pm

Hi Jayne, here's my Swedish cousin again. I would still appeal to the hair-painting masters for some advice on painting blonde hair.


Members (360)



New to the site? Check out our Guide to Getting Started.

Please take a moment to read our Member Guidelines. Thanks!

Need help?

If you need assistance with this site, please visit the Site Help forum where the moderators and/or other members will assist you.


The Art Colony is a fun online art community for artists of all abilities working in painting, drawing, mixed media, sculpture and handicrafts! Join us and share your art, ask questions, receive tips, and make new friends!


It is 100% FREE to join the Art Colony and always will be!


Artist and Owner of The Art Colony                      

The Art Colony is co-run by a fabulous team of enthusiastic moderators:






© 2019   Created by Jane Miles. All Rights Reserved.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Privacy Policy  |  Terms of Service