Traditional-Drawing Tutorial: How to Draw A Night On the Town by Norman Rockwell

Norman Rockwell was a famous illustrator, many of his art work appeared on covers of magazines. You can read a bit about him here and see some of his work here.

The image we will be drawing is called 'A Night On The Town'. It appeared on the cover of The Saturday Evening Post on March 12, 1921. This tutorial provides drawing practice for various shading techniques, good visual skills and proportion judgment. Level of this tutorial would be placed at medium to expert. You can view the original painting on the net, although this original tutorial was made before computers were used and adapted for the internet.
(The link to show you his paintings were no way used to create any of my tutorials of his work, they are a way to show you some of his existing paintings.)

Note: Making a drawing tutorial can be very hard and time consuming, it's impossible to scan every line you draw in and to explain every pencil stroke you make. It is mainly visual and the person doing the tutorial needs to study each accompanying image very carefully. It's not like making a photoshop tutorial, we can't give exact step by step, nor can we promise your finished image will be identical to the one in the tutorial. We all have our own style of drawing and it impacts our results in our finished image.

End result:
How to Draw A Night On the Town by Norman Rockwell Final Image

avatar tapiona

Views: 17632
Score: 8.36 / 10
Author earned: $10
Practice tutorial


Step 1

4B Graphite Pencil
Kneaded Eraser
Light Source (light table, window, bright lamp, etc.)

Print out finished Drawing for guide. Draw in your rough draft, how the bodies will bend, the seat, a outline for body, clothing and dishes.

Step 2

With a clean piece of paper set over guide on a light source, draw in the head and facial details, close up will guide you.

Step 3

Starting drawing in the detail on her hair, lower image will guide you.

Step 4

Finish drawing in the detail to her hair, lower image will guide you.

Step 5

Start drawing in her shoulders and arms, a bit of her sleeve. Large image below will guide you.

Step 6

Draw in her right arm and hand, lower image will guide you.

Step 7

Draw in the detail and shading to the top of her dress, use larger image as your guide.

Step 8

Draw in the outline of his right shoulder and head, lower image will guide you.

Step 9

Draw in the hair detail and facial detail, use lower image to guide you.

Step 10

Moving down, we draw in his right sleeve and left hand, adding shading to his hand. We also add her fingers gripping his left hand. Lower image will guide you.

Step 11

Draw in his right hand and add shading and detail to it and his sleeve. Close up will guide you.

Step 12

Now draw in his left shoulder and arm, along with the lapel of his jacket, lower image will guide you.

Step 13

Add the shading to the lapel. ( I like to make it dark, then lighten it later.) Draw in the folds of fabric on his sleeve. Use bigger image to guide you.

Step 14

Draw in the outline of her skirt, use close as guide.

Step 15

We need to start drawing the circle that will surround them, it will help us keep the picture in proportion.

Step 16

Still working on the circle.

Step 17

Finish up drawing the circle.

Step 18

We are going to start drawing in shading and detail to her skirt, pay attention to the larger image. There is a lot of detail that goes into her skirt.

Step 19

Keep detailing the skirt. It will take several steps to get all the detail in, but i wanted to be sure you could see it progress. Larger image will guide you.

Step 20

You can see the skirt filling in nicely the more detail we add, so keep drawing in the shading. Using close up as your guide.

Step 21

I hope you are studying both images carefully in each step, I'm sorry, but I don't remember everything I drew in each step. I do the drawing and scanning first, then add the close ups and then write the tutorial up. So, I might forget something here and there.

Add more detailing to the her dress, the part closest to him, larger image will guide you.

Step 22

We need to make his trouser leg stand out next to her dress, so draw it in with darker and a thicker line. Close up will guide you.

Step 23

Draw in her legs and shoes, bigger image will guide you.

Step 24

Add shading to her front leg and shoes, close up will guide you.

Step 25

Shade in the back leg with cross hatch, image on right will guide you.

Step 26

Draw in the floor line and the outline of his right leg, use larger image to guide you.

Step 27

Draw in line shading under her lower leg to give a slight shadow effect. Use larger image on right to guide you.

Step 28

Draw in the detail and shading on his right sock and shoe, use larger image to guide you.

Step 29

Draw in part of his left leg, the edge to the seat cushion and add shading to his right trouser leg, using cross hatch. Close up will guide you.

Step 30

Add shadow to the area between his legs, texture to the cushion and draw in the outline of his left leg. Close up will guide you.

Step 31

Start shading and detailing in his left shoe, the shading for the seat he is on. Use close up to guide you.

Step 32

Draw in the bottom of his suit jacket, add shading and detailing to left leg and start the first cup. You will also be drawing in the cushion to the left of him. Close up will guide you.

Step 33

Shade area under his jacket for shadow and start adding texture to the new area of cushion. Larger image will guide you.

Step 34

Add rest of cushion texture, some shading on the front part of bench and to the cup. Close up will guide you.

Step 35

Draw in the second cup with some shading and the outline of the plate, larger image will guide you.

Step 36

Draw in the silverware and detail to the plate, using close up as guide.

Step 37

Add shadows beneath the plate and silverware.

Step 38

This is where you study your drawing and make any clean up or repairs you may need. In my case, I softened the shadow of his lapel. You did it, congratulations! thank you for taking the time to look at my tutorial and have a fantastic day. :)

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avatar ponti55
ponti55 says:

Very detailed and easy to follow.. i admire your patience!!

(5 years and 2438 days ago)
avatar hereisanoop

very useful thanks for sharing

(5 years and 2340 days ago)

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