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How to Draw Eyelashes

How to Draw Eyelashes

Question from Ray, Drawing Academy student

I seem to have a real difficulty getting the eye lashes rendered. It seems as though when I do an eye on a male, as soon as I start rendering the eye lashes, the eye soon becomes a woman’s eye.

I have tried laying in sparse lashes, very small, and then a few longer ones without any luck. The bottom lashes are just fine, very soft and not to many.

I am sure there is some way to solve this issue.

Please help!

Ray

Answer from Vladimir London, Drawing Academy Tutor

Hi Ray,

Many thanks for your question.

I think you might be holding on to an erroneous lesson from the five-pencil-method of creating eyelashes.

Good artists do not “decorate” portraits with separate eyelashes; they use minimal techniques to ‘suggest’ them.

Please check below some drawings by the 1st year Russian art students of the mid-20th century and artists of the 19th century:

how-to-draw-eyelashes

how-to-draw-eyelashes

how-to-draw-eyelashes

how-to-draw-eyelashes

how-to-draw-eyelashes

how-to-draw-eyelashes

how-to-draw-eyelashes

how-to-draw-eyelashes

how-to-draw-eyelashes

how-to-draw-eyelashes

how-to-draw-eyelashes

How to Draw Eyelashes

how-to-draw-eyelashes

You can see that female portraits sometimes have some indication of separate eyelashes, while portraits of men are more laconic in that respect.

When drawing eyelashes, the rule of thumb is – do not draw separate eyelashes unless you absolutely have to.

The eyelashes of the top eyelid can be suggested with dark marks along the eyelid contour, emphasizing that they are there; the bottom eyelid should be done much softer and lighter.

Search on the internet for hi-resolution drawings by the Old Masters, to compare how they approached this task.

how-to-draw-eyelashes

How to Draw Eyelashes

how-to-draw-eyelashes

Hope this helps.

Best regards,
Vladimir

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This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Ray says:

    This makes total sense. I think I will practice drawing some of these to get the hang of it.

    Thanks so much for the reply,

    Your Friend,

    Ray

  2. tortoriello5 says:

    Vladimir,

    Thank you for a very informative answer/photos, regarding one of the many art questions that I have struggled with.

    Sincerely,
    Janice

  3. silvcece says:

    Hi Vladimir
    Thank you very much for this article. I really enjoyed the fact that the ‘old masters’ did not over do the eyelashes. The idea of having the eyelashes of the top eyelid suggested with dark marks along the eyelid contour thus “emphasizing that they are there” and then much softer and lighter tones for the bottom eyelid makes a lot of sense.

    The demonstrated drawings above depict this clearly.

    Thankyou
    Silvano

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