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29 votes

How can I avoid smudging my pencil drawings?

You can use an artist's bridge as well. It's basically a long metal ruler with either rubber feet at either end or a thin foam on the bottom. You can easily make your own out of a sturdy ruler as well....
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  • 391
25 votes
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What can I do to ensure I only erase the smaller details without affecting the area around it?

Get an erasing shield/stencil: An erasing shield is a metal stencil that can mask off the parts of your drawing you want to protect, while exposing only the area you want to erase, so you can erase ...
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  • 2,595
16 votes
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What's the difference between drawing paper and regular paper?

TL;DR: Generally speaking, printer paper is not designed to last long and is intended to hold ink rather than graphite, charcoal, paint, etc. The same is more or less true of notebook paper. Printer ...
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16 votes

How can I draw right angles with just a ruler?

You can use the 3-4-5 method of creating right angles. Begin with a construction line and mark a zero point and a 3 point. Make a mark. Notice that I'm not using units of measure. You can use ...
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  • 6,193
15 votes
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How can I draw single hairs on a black background with charcoal or graphite?

The flocculent beauty of the work you show is not that the artists drew a single hair (that would never achieve the effect) the beauty came from the artists layering one drawn hair "over" another and ...
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  • 2,936
13 votes

What can I do to ensure I only erase the smaller details without affecting the area around it?

Other options: Eraser pencils: Imagine a pencil that is filled with eraser instead of graphite - that's an eraser pencil. Some models have a small brush on the back end for getting rid of eraser ...
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13 votes
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What does it mean to "push your values"?

If there isn't enough separation in the levels of the values used in rendering an image then the image can look washed out or the shapes poorly defined. Someone saying, you need to "push the values", ...
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  • 2,936
12 votes

How can I avoid smudging my pencil drawings?

In addition to the suggestions by @user24, you can get workable fixative that allows you to continue to work on drawings after spraying it. This is handy if you can't finish the piece in the whole ...
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  • 3,363
12 votes

What eraser can I use with wax core coloured pencils

Lifting something like the Prismacolor line with a hand-held eraser is going to require a lot of elbow grease. So, when the need arises, either for a misplaced line or trying to get an effect, then ...
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  • 3,363
11 votes
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How can I draw realistic hair with pencil?

There is a natural temptation when drawing hair to think in terms of individual hairs and equate these to pencil lines. However this tends to get in the way as there is no reasonable way to draw every ...
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  • 1,919
10 votes
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How can I protect my pencil & charcoal drawings once complete?

If the pieces are likely to be handled and/or displayed then using fixative sprays is probably the best option. There are two purposely manufactured types: Workable Final Workable Fixative As the ...
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  • 1,328
10 votes
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How to overcome the fear of imperfection?

There's a famous story about a ceramics professor who separated his class into two groups of students. The students in Group A were graded solely on a single pot they presented at the end of the ...
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  • 2,385
10 votes
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How do I draw a very short human without making them look like a child?

It all comes down to proportions. When drawing humans, the proportions of different body parts are usually measured in "heads". One example by Leharc--BlueHeart on DeviantArt: (click the ...
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  • 8,535
9 votes
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What should I use to draw under oil paint?

If using graphite make sure to spray a few coats of fixative over the graphite drawing prior to painting. What should I use instead? You could also try: charcoal Water color pencils diluted ink
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9 votes

Dim lighting with colored pencils

If the light is coming from a candle, or group of candles, you're going to have very dramatic chiaroscuro lighting. Shadows should be very black, with not a lot of grey tones. Keep in mind that only ...
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  • 97
9 votes
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What can I do to make drawing this angle easier?

Here are some key differences I noticed between the reference image and your drawing: The relative location of the pupils. If the subject is looking up at you, the pupils should be at the top of the ...
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  • 2,385
9 votes
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How to improve control of hand whilst drawing on tablet?

This might seem like a cop-out answer, but... practice! Practice is the main way for you to improve your control and line quality. I've been using a drawing tablet for 10 years and I still make ...
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  • 1,203
9 votes
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Why are parallel lines in the real world not drawn parallel as they head to the vanishing point?

I will preface my response with a cautionary warning that I am an engineer by profession, so I am somewhat naturally inclined to use optics/physics and math to illustrate my point. Hopefully I'm ...
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  • 639
9 votes
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How to draw human body in chest/collarbone area?

I think the main reasons the curviness seems lacking is because the contrast is too high or uneven, and your hatching doesn't follow the curves of the body. The quite abrupt ending of the shading on ...
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  • 8,784

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