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Uploaded: April 18, 2012
Artist: Finalprodigy
Difficulty: Intermediate  Intermediate Skill Level
Steps: 21
Updated: April 19, 2012
P.O.V: Front
Favourited: 14 times
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Finally, after hundreds of graphite tutorials I am moving on to charcoal! I consider this starting from scratch since I have never drawn a purely charcoal drawing using a set technique. Hopefully with a bit of practice I will be able to make my charcoal tuts equal to my graphite ones. For now here's a lesson on how to draw a sunflower using charcoal.

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how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower

How to Draw a Sunflower, Realistic Sunflower

how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 1

STEP 1.

Start out by picking your materials. I used this basic charcoal set plus some erasers and blending stumps for this drawing. I used 2B. HB, and white charcoal along with a carbon pencil for sketching. I also used soft willow charcoal for light shading (the thin sticks in the small container).
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 2

STEP 2.

Start out with a very simple sketch using the carbon pencil. Use basic shapes and divisions.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 3

STEP 3.

Sketch in the center of the flower.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 4

STEP 4.

sketch in the petals one quadrant at a time.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 5

STEP 5.

Keep inching along. Don't worry yourself with details yet.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 6

STEP 6.

Your basic sketch should look something like this.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 7

STEP 7.

Roughly shade in the flower and background using soft charcoal.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 8

STEP 8.

Smooth out your background using a blending stump.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 9

STEP 9.

Smooth out the flower using a blending stump. Don't worry about perfect blending just make sure that there isn't too much loose charcoal on the paper's surface.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 10

STEP 10.

Use 2B and HB charcoal to add a layer of shading to the seed section. Use a blending stump as needed.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 11

STEP 11.

Now shade in the floret section. Use an eraser to hint at the highlights.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 12

STEP 12.

Start further defining the petals. Use a 2B charcoal on the background and HB on the petals. Use a blending stump to smooth out your shading and an eraser to add highlights.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 13

STEP 13.

Continue working your way clockwise around the flower.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 14

STEP 14.

Define the next section.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 15

STEP 15.

This finished layer should look something like this.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 16

STEP 16.

If you don't have white charcoal or just don't want to use it you can still follow along by just erasing your highlights. Start out by defining the seeds. Use 2B and HB charcoal to add definition as well.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 17

STEP 17.

Draw in the florets. There are basically tiny flowers surrounding the seed are of the sunflower. You can get as detailed as you want with them but for my sanity's sake I kept them simple.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 18

STEP 18.

Use a white charcoal stick to roughly "shade in" the petals.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 19

STEP 19.

Make sure to cover as much of the blank paper as possible.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 20

STEP 20.

Start detailing the petals. Work in the same clockwise. I use a white charcoal pencil for the highlight details and an HB pencil for the edges and shadows. Use a blending stump to soften your edges. Darken your background as you move along using 2B charcoal/soft charcoal.
 
how to draw a sunflower, realistic sunflower step 21

STEP 21.

Finish up your petals and add finishing details. This is just one charcoal drawing technique. I will probably learn more as I practice with this medium and discover new ways of using it. Let me know what you think!