• Kirsty Partridge

Drawing Realistic Blonde Hair with Coloured Pencil

Drawing hair with colored pencils can be a challenge. In this tutorial, I will go through step by step how to draw blonde hair. I also have blogs out soon explaining how to draw black, brunette and ginger hair as well. For real-time colored pencil tutorials click here. Let’s get straight into it!


I’ll be using four different colors today that work well together to create depth and a range of values. When drawing blonde hair pick natural tones like cream, instead of bright, unnatural looking yellows. I use a range of browns for the shadows as well. Start by creating a simple pencil sketch mapping out the main locks of hair. I then start by applying a base layer of cream to the hair. Make sure you don't apply too much pressure on the pencil!


Use bistre (a light brown) to start defining the midtones in the hair. Always, apply your pencil strokes in the direction that the hair is flowing in, curving your strokes where necessary too. This gives the drawing movement and realism. Keep your pencils sharp so that you create clean lines, instead of fuzzy-looking ones!


I then go in with my darkest color and block in the shadows. Still don’t apply too much pressure! It will get more realistic as we layer. Next, I add the cream color over the top of the dark brown to help blend everything into each other (harsh edges will give an unrealistic look!).



Go in again with the middle two colors to continue building up the layers. Draw the hair in sections, as this will help give the hair volume. Don’t just draw loads of individual hairs all over the place.





Use the Van Dyck brown to darken up the shadows. To make your drawing pop you need to have a range of values ( a good contrast.) Also, Keep layering cream and bistre over the top so everything blends seamlessly together.




To increase the contrast in your drawing you also need to have some bright highlights. I pull up highlights in the hair using a stick eraser. Look at your reference photo and identify the lightest sections of hair. These are the areas you can lighten up with the eraser. Finish each section of hair by adding some loose flyaway hairs, which will loosen up the hairstyle and make it more realistic.


Now you can repeat the process. Follow these steps exactly for the next section but check your reference for any differences you may need to tweak in the new section (such as hair direction, length, and values). If you are drawing lighter blonde hair just use more of the cream pencil and less of the browns!



If you would like more helpful lessons that will improve your drawing skills, head over to my

online colored pencil courses.


To see this blonde hair come to life, watch the video below:

Materials used:

Faber Castell Polychromos 120 set: http://geni.us/Polychromos120Set

Strathmore Bristol vellum paper: http://geni.us/StrathmoreBristolPaper

Prismacolor 150 set: http://geni.us/Prismacolor150Set

Disclaimer; some links are affiliated.

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