Portrait tutorial author: Librada Ureña, Teaching Artist
Introduction & adaptation for website by: Sarah Clowe, Director of Art Programs

Materials: pencil, paper, mirror

Follow our drawing tutorial to learn how to draw portraits like artist, Elizabeth Zunon!

Today's blog project is inspired by the portraiture (artwork of people) of Elizabeth Zunon.  We at the museum have been lucky to have a longstanding relationship with local Albany artist, Elizabeth Zunon. Liz is not only an artist whose work is in the museum's collection but she also plays a key role as a teaching artist in the museum's art in education school partnership program, Book Arts.  Those who have visited the museum in the recent past will recognize her giant painted dutch shoe displayed prominently in the museum's lobby.  Through the support of the National Endowment of the Arts, the Albany Institute of History & Art interviewed four artists including Elizabeth Zunon for a special series called Artists' Voices. Learn more about Zunon and her art by streaming the video at the end of this post.

Step 1: Drawing the Head Shape & Proportion Guides

Step 2: Placing the Facial Features

Once you've found the placement for the facial features as in the first image then you may follow steps 3-5 below to learn how to draw the eyes, nose, and mouth before adding in the final touches to refine your drawing.

Step 3: Drawing the Eyes

The eyes are drawn around the first horizontal (side to side) guide line.  Follow the steps below to create them.

Step 4: Drawing the Nose

The nose is drawn above the second horizontal guide line.  Follow the steps below to create it.

Step 5: Drawing the Mouth

The mouth is drawn below the second horizontal guide line and should be between the nose and the chin.  Follow the steps below to create it.

Elizabeth Zunon's work with the Albany Institute of History & Art

Elizabeth Zunon's work with the museum has included acting as a teaching artist in the museum's school partnership program, Book Arts in addition to conducting public art workshops, talks, and book release celebrations.  Below you may view a few photographs of Zunon leading programming with the museum.

To see some of the student portraiture work that was created under Elizabeth Zunon's guidance take a look at the Book Arts section of the museum's website.

Artists' Voices: Elizabeth Zunon & Her World of Books

Visit our Collections Database to see Wanting to be Free Like the Wind Blows Through a Tree, oil paint and collage on watercolor paper by Zunon in the Albany Institute's collection :



Published April 23, 2020