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How to Draw Ludwig Van Beethoven

Updated February 21, 2017

Ludvig van Beethoven was not only a talented and famous composer, he was also an ideal subject for paintings and drawings due to his intense expression and imposing hair. Individuals with distinctive features make easier subjects for portraits because these features become associated with them and make them easier to recognise. To draw Beethoven, you need to develop some basic drawing skills and apply them to emphasising Beethoven's distinctive features. This will prevent people who look at your drawing from mistaking him for Bach or Mozart.

Study portraits of Beethoven to familiarise yourself with his appearance. Pay close attention to the shape of his head, his style of clothes and the distinctive qualities of his hair and expression.

Draw an outline of Beethoven's head on a piece of paper, using a pencil lightly on the paper so the lines can be erased, if necessary.

Extend the lines to outline Beethoven's shoulders and torso, after you are satisfied that the outlines of his head are accurate.

Draw in Beethoven's wild and imposing hair. Begin with light pencil lines until you are satisfied with your depiction of the hair, then go over the lines with more pressure to create dark pencil lines.

Sketch Beethoven's eyes, nose and mouth. This is the critical part of the drawing because a subject's expression will set the tone of the portrait, and it is the most difficult part to get right. Sketch lightly and erase until you are happy with the expression you have created.

Fill in shadows and details of eyes, nose, mouth and ears.

Add shading to bring out the depth of Beethoven's hair and clothing.

Things You'll Need

  • Pictures of Beethoven
  • Paper
  • Pencil
  • Eraser
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About the Author

Jagg Xaxx has been writing since 1983. His primary areas of writing include surrealism, Buddhist iconography and environmental issues. Xaxx worked as a cabinetmaker for 12 years, as well as building and renovating several houses. Xaxx holds a Doctor of Philosophy in art history from the University of Manchester in the U.K.