About The Author


My name is Anastasia Romanovna Shimshilashvili, but most of my life everybody calls me Shima.

My artistic journey began in 1998, when I started studying at the foundation courses of Moscow Academic Art Lyceum of the Russian Academy of Arts.


After a year I was admitted to the First Workshop of Moscow Academic Art Lyceum of the Russian Academy of Arts, where I acquired most of my knowledge and experience, and I am immensely grateful to my teachers for that! 

After graduating from the Art Lyceum in 2005, I entered Moscow State Academic Art Institute named after V. I. Surikov, the faculty of Fine Art. In the third year, I was admitted to the Monumental Workshop of Surikov Institute, which I graduated with honours.

Thanks to studying at the Monumental Workshop of the Surikov Institute, along with easel painting and drawing, I mastered such techniques as frescoes, mosaics, icon painting, sgraffito, stained glass and modelling.

Currently I exhibit my works nearly monthly at various international exhibitions, and they are popular among collectors. Therefore, I can consider myself as a successful artist.

I started teaching in the last years of the institute. First, these were the studio-based classes, and then I switched to teaching online, and it proved to be more effective. Learning online the student pays more attention, because he/she will draw their works on their own. This allows the student to understand shortcomings, and the next lesson he/she can clearly identify the most challenging areas, which we start working on. At the moment I teach based on my own methodology - #shimamethod - which allows to achieve a good level of drawing even by those students who have never drawn before, in a short time.

I am excited to share my own method of teaching through this book 'Pencil Portrait - Drawing Techniques A to Z 'and introduce you to #shimamethod. My goal is to encourage you to draw, and get into flow of drawing, which will come when you draw mindfully and sequentially.

I am also an author of the bestseller 'Learn How to Draw:  A simple Guide to All Techniques' - published in Russian in 2017. 

multiple award winner and participant of the following exhibitions:

Royal Society of British Artists

The Sunday Times Watercolour Competition 

The Biennial Ruth Borchard Self-Portrait Prize 

The Other Art Fair

New English Art Club

Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours 

Society of Women Artists

The Pastel Society

Young Artists of Russia

Exhibitions of Moscow Union of Artists


"Great book. Everything is clear and understandable. Suitable for all skill levels. The author is an awesome artist with extensive experience in art, will tell and show what and how. Buy. You won’t regret!!"

- Nikolay M.

"I really liked the explanations about shading, analysis of errors and of the hatching direction. Simple and accessible, with much needed practical exercises."

- Tigrress

"One of the best drawing tutorials. Painted in detail, clearly shown. Very convenient format, lightweight, which distinguishes it from many weighty drawing books. The book covers the highlights for beginners. Also for practicing the theory - there are homework exercises."

- Ekaterinapoli

"Finally I found a really understandable book for a beginner for self-study!"

- Sergeev V.

"I like Anastasia's YouTube channel, so I was delighted to learn that she has released a book. Anastasia's approach is more academic, in contrast to popular sketches, but not boring. Perhaps this is the first drawing book that I read from beginning to an end (I have not mastered everything yet, but soon). Written in an easily understandable manner and without water. Reading is interesting and informative for a beginner."

- Katya M.

"One of the best drawing tutorials I've ever seen. Everything is very competently and clearly stated, without "water"; everything to the point, a lot of very useful advice that helped me a lot; I’ve not seen them in any literature on drawing. I really liked the language and manner of presentation of the material, as well as the description of rather rare techniques: drawing with sauce and working with tempera!"

- Tatiana R.