Laura Knopp

The Evolution of My Portrait Illustration Style

Behind-the-scenes, Custom portraitsLaura Knopp

Earlier this week, I was digging through my messy office supply closet and couple things happened…

  • I realized I have a ton unused sequins and feathers...such a waste! Perhaps I need to bedazzle a throw pillow or my husband’s khakis??
  • I found some of my old portrait illustrations and whoa baby I’ve come a long way in terms of my drawing technique and style.

So, in honor of it being #throwbackthursday, I’m sharing a couple of my old illustrations today...

Up first is an illustration I did of my husband and I for our Christmas card a few years back. My style was simple back then - a few basic shapes and swatches of color create an overall look that can best be described as cutesy-wootsy.


Next is an illustration I did last summer of Kelsey Bang and her husband, Jake. My drawing style had clearly progressed - I was focused on using more realistic shapes and human proportions. (almost as focused as I was on that adorable pretzel purse of hers!).


And finally, here’s a portrait I did of the royal newlyweds, Harry and Meghan (have you heard of them?). As you can see, I’m continuing to use realistic shapes and human proportions like in the previous portrait, but I’ve added more detail in terms of shading. You can read more about my current portrait illustration process here.


Over the course of a few years, I’ve made some big strides in terms of my drawing style.

What do you think? Do you see a big difference?