Practice Pencil Sketch

| December 30, 2009

Graphite Portrait WIP - Stage 1

I figure I am kidding myself to think I can paint a portrait if I can’t draw one. So, more drawing it is. I am trying to focus on the anatomical foundation of facial features as well as the delicate values that define them. I don’t think I would ever paint to this level of detail, but studying a subject so intensely will help me make decisions in future paintings. Above is a scan of the initial phase showing the contour and early pencil sketch. I always enjoy seeing the subject emerge from the Bristol. Kind of like the old Ah Ha video. I’m not dating myself now am I

Graphite Portrait Final

Graphite Portrait Final

Above is the final pencil sketch. I need to go back and analyze this a bit. I sometimes take the scan and overlay it on the reference with Photoshop to double check my draftsmanship. The glaring mistakes show up pretty quickly that way. Overall I like the look but it seems that the eyes may be set a little to close and the alignment of the mouth may be off a bit relative to the eyes. It’s amazing how just the slightest anomaly in dimension makes things look a little strange. I feel that these are getting easier but I still have a way to go before I will be confident enough to attack a painted portrait.

Over the past few days, I have also been working through an Andrew Loomis book on head construction. Pictured below is one that I developed with his help. I love the 40’s look that is so prevalent in his work. This one looks a little Disney in my opinion with slightly larger eyes and lips.

Loomis inspired head using construction technique

Category: Fine Art and Painting