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element of art

by JuliannaKunstler.com

Part 2: Shading techniques

Learning targets:

1. Learn the most common techniques for value shading

2. How to hold a pencil

3. Learn the proper shading order

The process of adding value to create an illusion of form, space, and light in a drawing is called shading.

Every artist will find the shading method that works best for them. Each method produces a distinct result and depending on what type of art you want to create - you can choose the one that is appropriate for the task.

how to shade:


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Hatching - Line strokes are drawn in the same direction.

By drawing strokes closer together, we create darker values
Leaving more space in between - results in lighter values.

For rounded objects, the strokes may slightly curve - to follow the contours of the object.

Crosshatching - Lines cross over each other.

The density at which the line strokes cross and overlap - determines the value that they produce.

Circling is a loose application of continuous strokes with circular motions.

Layering and applying different pressure will generate a range of smooth tonal values.

Scribbling - is just a Loose application of overlapping scribbles.

Scribbling is an excellent technique to use when drawing specific subjects as it not only creates values, but also gives a sense of texture.

Blending - Smooth gradations of value are produced either by adjusting the amount of pressure applied to the medium or by using a blending tool, such a blending stump.

Never use your finger for blending.
The oils in your skin, when mixed with graphite, can ruin the drawing as you rub the graphite into the paper.
That can make the shading look blotchy and hard to erase or correct.

Stippling or pointillism - is a shading technique by applying countless small dots to build up darker values in a drawing.

The density of the dots determines the value produced.

Cross-contour - Contour lines can be done in many different ways but basically the idea is to have the lines follow the shape of what you are drawing to support the form.

And don’t forget that your eraser is an equal drawing tool along with your pencil or charcoal.
Use it for drawing, as well as to create lighter values or erase..

So here are the basic shading techniques!

In the modern age artists use a 10 tone value scale.
Value increases 10% at a time.
Most artists can visualize the scale and use the terms:
“One tone down” or “one tone up” when talking about shading.

Value scale is a great reference tool for choosing the right value.
The same value looks lighter or darker next to different backgrounds.

When shading:
Use different grade pencils for different values.

Pencils marked H H2 H4 and so forth - are hard pencils.
They produce delicate light strokes and are great for light values and details.
Pencils marked from B to 8B are soft.
They produce darker values and are great for sketching

Shading a value scale is a great way to practice your value and shading techniques.

Always start shading with the darkest value.

The darkest value uses your medium to its max.
And you can use it as a reference for the rest of the values.

If you start with the darkest value of the scale,
Each next section should be lighter than the previous.

You can control it by pressure and stroke density.

If you need to adjust a tone - it is easier to darken it - just
add more shading.

Leave your last section blank for white value.

But what happens if you start with the lightest section and move towards the dark values?
At some point you might reach the pencil’s maximum darkness.
Then what?

You would have to go back and start erasing to lighten the values ... Which can ruin the stroke pattern and create a mess.

So, to save time and effort… it is always best to start with the darkest value.

And here is a shading tip for you:
small strokes are easier to control while shading.
They create a better stroke pattern and are easy to layer.

It does this by creating a range of tones within an object and its background.