Pencil Shading Exercises

Shading Exercise 1

Exercise 1

Graduated Tone

Graduated tone can be used to create the illusion of space and form in a drawing. It is a very useful skill to develop.

Use a B, 2B, or darker grade of pencil for your shading. Lighter grades (H, 2H etc.) will not give enough depth to your darkest tones.

Just start by shading the area you wish to be dark and slowly build up the tone. As you work towards the light, gradually ease the pressure on your pencil until you can no longer the mark it makes. You then patiently repeat this process, building a depth to the shading, adjusting any irregular areas and trying to keep the tonal changes as smooth as possible until you achieve the intensity of tone that you desire.

Below are some more exercises of increasing difficulty which will test your shading skills to the limit.

Shading Exercise 2

Exercise 2

Shading Exercise 3

Exercise 3

Shading Exercise 4

Exercise 4

Shading Exercise 5

Exercise 5

Shading Exercise 6

Exercise 6

Shading Exercise 7

Exercise 7

Practice the exercises above to help improve your drawing skills.

Practice Sheet

You can use the A4 line drawing below to test your shading skills.
Right click on the drawing to save, copy or print.

Shading Exercises


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