Self-Portrait Drawing Project

In this project, the point of it is to improve your skills and use lines and tone to capture your own likeness.

Image source by Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres

We forget sometimes the beautiful stories we can tell with a few simple lines, some attention to detail and hard work. Through this project, I am asking you to give me a glimpse into yourselves, today, as you are.

Realism, Simplicity and Line are what you are to use to make this happen.

The size of paper will be around 18”x24”.
The colour of paper is your choice, based on what I have.
The medium can be pencil, pen, conte’.

Start by thinking about what you want to show? How will you dress? Will you have a prop? How will you arrange yourself on the paper to bring out the atmosphere you are after? What will you do to the background to subtly enhance the portrait? What will you emphasise and what will you make simple?

Make many thumbnail sketches in your sketchbook.

Think about what paper and medium choices will affirm you idea.

Work in stages, set goals

…Make it happen…


Ask me questions! Ask questions of yourself!

Use the easels!



  1. Set up your mirror and LOOK at YOUR FACE!!!
  2. Start thinking about where your facial feature are in relation to each other and the top of your head and the bottom of your chin
  3. Try to sketch your whole have in 1/2 scale in about 5 minutes
  4. Now take a step back and spend some time sketching each feature; eyes, nose, ears and mouth- one page per each!
  5. Then spend a page doing as many one inch heads on a single page as you can. Do some quickly and some with more detail- have fun!
  6. Now, start drawing some larger heads until you get comfortable and then start on your own.
  7. When your ready ask me for the good copy paper!


How to Draw Eyes

How to Draw the Nose

How to Draw Ears

How to Draw Lips

How to Draw the Head From Any Angle




Image source

Image galleries for different projects