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Still Life Drawing Tutorial- How to Draw Still Life

I made this tutorial to show the different steps that I take in drawing a realistic still life drawing. There are many different methods though, so don't rely purely on this one. :)

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Step 1 For this still life tutorial I chose to draw a zippo lighter. I have drawn them quite a few times in the past but I always enjoy them. The first step was getting an outline. I also marked off where some highlights will be.
still life drawing tutorial

Step 2 I began drawing from left to right, top to bottom. Working this way, I never have to rest my hand on a finished part of a drawing. I carefully drew around the highlights with a mechanical 3B.
still life drawing tutorial

Step 3 I continued on drawing the flint and starting the metal. I noticed some highlights around the holes in the metal so I drew around them. When drawing highlights, compare them to eachother to make sure they are pure white. You will find that some highlights are not pure white.
still life drawing tutorial

Step 4 I came across a brilliant highlight in the metal and when comparing to other light parts, I saw that the holes in the metal should be lightly shaded. This made the highlight stand out more too.
still life drawing tutorial

Step 5 The top of the lighter was done at this point. I compared tones to eachother and tweaked parts that needed lightening or darkening.
still life drawing tutorial

Step 6 It was time to move onto the bottom part of the lighter. I started this off by laying down some B graphite. The zippo had alot of scratches in it that I wanted to show so I started making little random highlights all over. There was another highlight on the left side so I drew around it.
still life drawing tutorial

Step 7 The bottom part of the zippo is lighter on the left side and darker on the right so I began laying down some 3B on the right side and blending it into the left. I did not use blending stumps for this though. Blending stumps would give too smooth of an effect so I just used some good old fashioned cross hatching here. There were some highlights in the darker/right side also but not as bright as on the left so I pulled those out with an eraser.
still life drawing tutorial

Step 8 I worked on the scratches on the lighter for quite a while until I liked how they looked. I made sure to really look close at my reference to see how they actually appeared. There was some indirect light on the right side of the zippo so I rendered it lighter.
still life drawing tutorial

Step 9 I moved on to the lid closing mechanism at the top of the zippo. I made sure to draw around the highlights on the rivet.
still life drawing tutorial

Step 10 Next came the lid. I started drawing the darkest parts of the lid and drew around the highlight.
still life drawing tutorial

Step 11 I filled in the rest of the lid using a 3B with a cross hatching technique. There were a couple highlights on the lid so I pulled them out with a kneaded eraser. I then layed down some 3B for the cast shadow under the lid. I always blend my shadows because I think it makes them look better. Almost done now.
still life drawing tutorial

Step 12 I finished the drawing off by drawing the bottom of the lighter. I used a B pencil for this. After that I blended the cast shadow under the bottom same as I did for the last step. I hope you enjoyed this tutorial.
still life drawing tutorial

I hope this tutorial has helped you in some way or another. I can explain how I do things all day but the basic idea of drawing is to just understand how tones flow and to train your eye to see what others don't see.

All of my tutorials are free, I don't ask for anything in return. I make them because I enjoy talking art and teaching others. They do take me quite a while to put together, a lot of work goes into them. If you have enjoyed or benefitted from this tutorial all I ask is that you help promote it. You can do this by submitting to social networking sites, linking, blogging, or posting links on forums. Promoting my tutorials is a huge help!!

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