Tonal Drawings


This is a self portrait I produced in lesson. The purpose of this piece was to practise my drawing skills, experimenting with various pencil tones and producing a piece that could be used in the next stage of my project. It is on dark green paper to show the contrast between the background colour, white and black coloured pencils. I feel more confident in using the darker coloured pencils as these are what I would usually use. This is perhaps why I have appeared to use less of the white pencil.

I feel this drawing is not too successful, as only slightly looks like me. I feel that because I have used a lot more dark than light pencil, it gives an appearance that I am older in the image. This is due to the harsh dark lines. To improve this I could add more white bright tones to try and create a smooth effect, and prevent using harsh lines as I feel they give a heavy, unrealistic look.

Something which went quite well however, I feel is the proportion of the things in the image. Despite it not resembling me that much, I feel all of the facial features are fairly realistic and aren’t too far from my actual appearance.

To continue, another fault with this drawing is that it has cut out the top of my head. This I feel might limit what I can use it for, and how I develop it further in Photoshop. If I had planned this drawing first, this would be a factor I might have thought about before drawing.

I feel doing this piece has allowed me to think in more depth about proportion, shape and tone when it comes to drawing the human face. I feel that it has made me more aware of what factors I will need to think about later on in my project, so I can get the best outcome. I also feel that practising drawing the human face has made my drawing stronger, as it is something which I would not usually draw, and producing it allowed me to have an insight into perhaps what areas of drawing I need practise on.









This is a drawing I produced of a ‘water-bug’ it is drawn using pencils, and light and dark tones have been used to show the areas which are darker and lighter on the creature. My intention with this piece was to show the tones in the animal, and present it as close to the actual thing as I could.

I do not particularly like this drawing as I feel it looks quite flat, and although includes different tones, does not fully show the creatures true monotonous colours. I could improve this drawing by working with even more dark, and light tones, and perhaps using pencils of different strengths to help me do this. Also, I feel adding bright white areas to this image may show the tones more clearly, and stop the image looking so flat.

Despite not being in favour of this particular drawing, I feel it does have some strengths. For example, I feel the proportion of the creature’s body and limbs are fairly accurate. Another strength, I feel is the wings of the creature. Although more tones could be added, I feel it shows that the wings are one of the lightest parts on the creature, which was what I was intending to show.

The difficulties I encountered when producing this image was giving it a three-dimensional effect, as it wasn’t an image I was copying it was the actual creature. This I attempted to overcome with shading on the creature’s body, but could be further improved with more shading and possibly shadows around it to bring it out of the page slightly.

Overall, I believe that this task helped me strengthen my drawing skills and suggested to me that perhaps this is something I should work on before the final exam.


These sketches are to show different tones within shapes. I have shown dark and light examples of cones and spheres to develop my tonal drawing skills and to understand how I could use the pencils in different ways. I also have drawings of parts of a bug, which were again experiments with tones.

The lightest parts of the bug, I have drawn in bright white pencil, and the darkest parts I’ve drawn in black. I have then combined them to show what the bug may look like if I were to draw it in attempt to show its tones. I feel that this task was particularly useful, as allowed me to think more about how I would draw animals further on in my project, and what kind of markings I would use to show the tones.

thumbnail sketch 4


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