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My name is Darlene Nguyen and I am a 26 year old Vietnamese Canadian portrait artist. I share free drawing tutorials and art related blog posts on my site. If you are not familiar with my Youtube channel, I work with a variety of mediums and materials to create fun and unique art projects. My goal is to capture the creative process from the first brush stroke all the way to the last and share it with you through short, timelapsed videos. Although it’s fun creating speed drawings, it’s also an incredibly long process – which is why it’s so rewarding to see it all come to life in just a matter of minutes. I hope you enjoy my tutorials and videos!

Darlene :)




  1. Thanks so much for this Darlene.
    I like coloured pencil drawings so I want to know, does the blending stump work with coloured pencils???

  2. You are a huge inspiration to many people Darlene, including now me:-)

    Thank you so much for your hard work and sharing your tutorials, it is very much appreciated.


  3. >I love your drawing lessons, I wonder if you could answer a question for me. In the past I’ve been saving your lessons in Adobe Reader. But I haven’t saved any for a while and I can remember how I saved them lol or you’ve changed things. Probably the first thought my memory. Anyway if you would help me I would appreciate it. I go campi b g in the mountains of Utah a lot so I don’t always have interent service. That’s why I save them in Adobe..

  4. You are amazing Darlene. I’m a 42 year old self-taught artist who learned a lot of bad habits your tutorials are helping me correct. I wish you much success and appreciate you more than you know. Bless you and take care!

  5. Hi Darlene,

    I watch a lot of your tutorials and learned a lot, thank you so much.
    Also, I have problems with drawing someone’s face from who I personnaly know, could you give tips?
    Again, thank you so much! :D

  6. Ôi Hóa ra chị là người gốc Viêt, em xem chị trên youtube mãi sau mới vào trang web của chị mới thấy chị ghi là Vietnamese Canadian
    công nhận chị vẽ đẹp thật bài giảng chuyên nghiệp dễ hiểu em mới bắt đầu học vẽ mà thấy chị vẽ đẹp quá cảm ơn chị nhé.

  7. hi
    my name is amin and my english is not well
    im intresting in drawing human face and i see the toturials in ur sit and im so happy for this
    i wana tnx from u about this free etuqations
    im from iran and here is not like ur sit
    i wana ask u to tell me ur id in inesta im realy favorit to learn drawing
    so plllllzzzz follow me in insta which i can follow back u and use ur toturial
    my id is amin11640
    im student in radiology
    thank u soooooooooo much from my haert

  8. The confidence of your pieces comes through quietly yet strongly, but more importantly its the confidence which exudes from within you is what people find encouraging and also take motivation from. The romance with art that you have been nurturing since discovery is a driving light for many who enjoy the feeling of art. Unknowingly your passion for creation has flooded the pages and work tops of so many, You have done more than just put graphite to paper, you create from a depth and you have inspired. Passion of muse has done well to find and twine itself around your hand, Your being is one of artistic creation and people will follow you into the next realm of whatever creative form you choose next. It would be of little surprise to the concerned to find on their bookshelves the best seller penned by yourself. Your steps are well placed and your climb to fulfilment is of comfort and duty Don’t look into the light- look away! What else inspires Darleen……………?

  9. Hi Darlene Mam,
    My Is Dinesh I Just Saw Your Video Its Really Very Nice I just understand clearly By Face Drawing step by step I am a beginner I could no knowldge about Drawing After i wacth Face Drawing and then only i Can Understand How To Draw a Face So I just Humble Request Please Teach For us How draw by step and How to give lighting and shadows and how to colour to a character by realistic look explain about it mam and make video for it mam .

  10. Hi Ms.Nguyen,
    I am a novice to pencil drawing. I do dab a bit with oil paints on canvas. I was looking for simple techniques to draw with pencils. I found your website and was really amazed to say the least, at how simple your instructions are, to create magnificent drawings. The step-by-step procedures are by far the best and simple to follow. THANK YOU for sharing these fantastic videos and text on the art of pencil drawings.

  11. Thank you so much Darlene!! I could always draw very well but a few years ago I had a seizure and went into a coma for over a month. Relearning how to draw correctly has been a challenge but I am almost back on my game thanks to your tutorials!!!

  12. Hi Darlenne Nguyen , I liked all the video that you show us how to draw. I love your videos so much, its so beautiful, and creation.
    Pleased give us more Idea, lets us watch all the videos how to draw more. Thank you.

  13. 😍 your artwork!!!!!!!!! Please help me!! I am twelve years old and I am trying to teach myself how to realistically. Particularly human faces. Can you please give me some tips?

  14. Gracias por tu maravilloso aporte. buscaba un método fácil para dibujar la cabeza humana. Este para mi es el mejor. Gracias

  15. Hi Darlene nguyen, your artistic skills are amazing, and i’ll love be as good as u someday (if not better)…. i also wanted to suggest you creating a comic site or blog or something.. i reckon it will be interesting, thank you..cheers

  16. Hi Darlene Nguyen! Your artistic skills are good and yet to be admired by this world. I am a new so called “artist” and need some guidance to explore and fulfill the requirements for the flawless and divine lines to make art resistible for the viewers. You are a great teacher. You are just building up our newbie experience, so we can make artworks like you someday. Where I can follow your definitive tutorials?

    • Sure! I list a few types of smudging tools in this article: http://rapidfireart.com/2015/05/08/detailed-guide-how-to-use-a-blending-stump/

      There are many ways to smudge graphite. The rougher the tool is, the more texture you will get. If you use a thick brush, you will get hair-like strokes. A soft tissue or chamois will give you a very very soft effect. You can try smudging with various fabrics you have lying around, different types of cotton swabs or different types of paper (rolled up into an easy-to-handle blending tool like the one in the link above).

  17. Happy to learn at ur feet Darlene some things still not clear to me u can add me up on facebook little questions for u praise oluronke

  18. Hello Darlene, enjoying learning about your site, the work of others and the encouragement you provide. Thanks for allowing me to join!

  19. hi darlene!,

    my names jatarna and ive been on your website for a but over the last couple of days. i am so mind-blowed and so amazed with the artwork you’ve done. you inspire me to continue drawing each day. dont stop what you do, your a special and unique person. i personally love art because for me i love to express myself and even though when i try to sketch something and doesnt go well i always find it hard to look i dont know kind of realistic, espacially when it comes to facial features. when you first did art did you find it hard to draw or sketch? how do i improve?

    • Hi Jatarna! Welcome to RFA! When I first started drawing portraits, I was really discouraged because I was so awful. I thought it would be easy, but it was the exact opposite because I didn’t fully understand what I was drawing. It really helps to study anatomy so you can draw based on what you know as well as what you see. Another thing that helped me was drawing almost everyday and sharing my work with strangers because they offer more honest and constructive feedback than family members.

  20. Hi Darlene!

    Thank you so much for offering your lessons for free and putting so much detail in it. :) I heard that you were self taught, could you perhaps expand on your journey? I’ve only started drawing again and I’m mostly self taught too, but I never reached the level you are so I would love to hear your journey.

    Thanks again for you time!

    • Whoa, how did I miss this comment?? Thanks for dropping by and saying hello. Nice to see another self-taught artist here as well :)

      I was always into visual arts as a child, but never drew portraits until sometime in high school because it looked so intimidating! I started out drawing celebrities. They looked awful, but I just kept going at it. One day, I decided to document the process by taking a picture of each step and turning it into a video. I loved seeing the progression so much that I made more and more and shared them on YouTube (my old channel) – despite having no confidence in the finished product. Since I knew people were watching my work, I was even more determined to improve. I learned a lot by observation and trial and error. Once I find patterns of error, I try to correct myself no matter what my brain is telling me to do. I drew almost everyday – especially in school…. during classes haha. I definitely learned the hard way :P

    • Hi Drani! Thanks for stopping by and leaving a lovely comment :)
      If you mean, how can you be more comfortable with your artwork, my suggestion is to just draw until you can’t draw anymore. It’s as simple as that. Really get to know yourself and your drawing style, your strengths and weaknesses. It helps to draw every day. Once you get older, you’ll find that time just slips you by. So whatever it is you want to do, do it now :)

  21. I’m so happy I found your website. Ever since I first started finding an interest in drawing, I’ve been using your techniques and they’re amazing! I’ve impressed all of my friends with my drawings, even though they’re a bit wobbly. Thank you for making this website!


    • That’s awesome Rose! If you need any help or have any questions, don’t hesitate to shoot me an email via the contact page :)

  22. You are AMAZING! I hope to be as good as you one day but I’m not quite there yet! Love your videos and your awesome creations, especially the Jack Sparrow Wall of Epic! Keep up the inspiring work!!! :)

    • Cool I’m going to bookmark this site\ page as I’ve just began, drawing And the tips ext here are just brilliant….now I’ll be drawing in months not decades like I thought…I will post , something in a few weeks just to show what I’ve gotten from your help….thank you so much as I was about too give my pencils away.