15 fantasy portrait tips

Fantasy portraiture is my favourite subject. Bringing an original character to life is exciting, but can be difficult to achieve. To avoid mistakes and save time I try to follow a few rules. But they're really just guidelines, so feel free to adapt, change and test other techniques that might better suit your painting process. 

There's more to portraits than knowing how to draw a face. It's worth spending time and effort trying to understand how a face 'works', such as under a particular lighting setup. Such a skill won't be grasped overnight. The most important thing to bear in mind is to take your time. This is the best advice I can give, because nothing good comes from rushing a painting.

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Mélanie is a freelance illustrator who specialises in fantasy. She is a digital painting instructor at CGMA.