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Charcoal drawing can be a messy one if you do not know the right technique to do it. Before you start with your next charcoal painting and drawing, we would want you to go through this article once and see the mistakes that you can control when you draw next with charcoal. From focussing on shading techniques to the importance of supplies, we have it all covered for you here. Read till the end to see what are the mistakes you have been committing all this while and it is time now to rectify those mistakes.

  1. Not Choosing the Right Supplies

A charcoal drawing is not just about a charcoal stick and a piece of paper, it also includes supplies such as erasers and blending stumps. One need to check on the quality of these materials before using them to get the best results.

  • Vine Charcoal Stick: Vine charcoals are sold in the form of long sticks and is made of charred twigs of burnt wood.
  • Charcoal Pencil: They look just like a pencil but are a lot more smoother to use than a graphite pencil. It helps to give subtle textures to your charcoal painting and drawing.
  • Chalks: If you are looking to create gradients or graduated tones in your charcoal drawing, a chalk will come handy for you.
  • Blending Stump: Tortillons are made of stiff paper and are used in graduating or blending areas when you do shading.
  • Fixative Sprays: Fixatives used in a charcoal drawing dries off quickly and the best usage of it is to prevent the drawing from smudging.
  • Kneaded Eraser: If you want to lighten the tone of your charcoal drawing, a kneaded eraser is essential. Further, it is used to create sharp edges and outlines of your drawing.
  1. Work Horizontally

It should not be a matter of concern ideally whether you work horizontally or vertically when making a piece of art but when it comes to charcoal drawing, it is advisable to work vertically as it will help the excess charcoal particles to fall down and prevent any kind of smudging.

  1. Not Shading It Right

One way to accentuate a charcoal drawing is by adding shadows to it. It also helps to add a sense of realism to the drawing. This is one reason why we emphasise on the quality of the art supply to get incredible results out of it. You could also smudge certain areas to give an illusional effect to it.

  1. Not Using Fixative

A lot of people don’t realise the importance of fixative in a drawing. Fixative can be a saviour for your drawing and protect it for many years. It also prevents charcoal particles from coming off in the long run. And needless to say it will also protect your drawing sheet from becoming yellow in colour. However, make sure that you know how much fixative is enough and after you apply the fixative do not forget it to dry for some hours for the surface to not become sticky.

Charcoal drawing can be fun, exciting at the same time intimidating. Make sure that you apply these tips to get satisfactory results. You will realise how the work will be a lot mess free for you! The idea is to get as comfortable with the work as possible and that can only happen when you get the techniques right, along with the right kind of art supplies.