The Complete Guide” gives simple practical advice on how to achieve similarities, in what technique to paint, how to direct lighting, how to draw a nose, mouth, eyes, ears, how to maintain proportions, what are the features of the images of men and women. Practice it and you can paint a realistic portrait in just a couple of minutes.
Painting tools and techniques
You can draw a portrait with any available means: pencil, charcoal, ink and pen, watercolors, felt-tip pens, and so on. Of course, each of them gives its effect, depending not only on the characteristic features of the tool itself and the technique used, but also on what surface the cool drawing is made on: on white or colored, smooth or rough paper, on cardboard, and so on.
Types of portraits
There are two types of portrait: a formal portrait, where a person is depicted in a position that dictates his occupation, and where great importance is attached to the composition, environment, and often symbolic attributes.
This spectacular, modern way of portraying people was born of instant photography and requires great skill and good taste from the artist.
It is important not to distract the viewer’s attention and remember that the focus should be on the face (mainly the eyes). But to make the portrait more expressive, try to draw not only the head, but also the shoulders, or the body up to the waist, as well as arms that are as attractive as the face if they are beautifully shaped or play an important role in the composition.
Portrait of a woman
The depiction of women, like the study of their character, is not complete without solving aesthetic issues. You should choose a free, arbitrary position if the model is young, and stricter, calm if the model is of mature age. Avoid unnatural, overly theatrical poses. In many cases, it is worth cool drawing a woman in full height, since clothing and background play an important role in reflecting the personality of the model in the cool drawing ideas.
Portrait of a man
The portrait of a man is usually more formal. Sometimes, side lighting with beautiful contrasts can help highlight the features and shapes of a man’s face. For a young man, a relaxed position of the body and facial expression is beneficial, while men of mature age are best portrayed in a restrained, stately pose.
The lighting should be slightly diffused, come from one source (from a window or a lamp), and be located slightly above and to the side of the model. This lighting brings out the features of the face, but so softly that no shadows form under the nose and mouth or around the eyes. For this reason, you should avoid bright artificial lighting (for example, from a spotlight) and direct sunlight: they produce even the smallest wrinkles and negatively affect the quality of work.
How to achieve similarities
It is important to convey not only physical resemblance but also psychological. To achieve physical similarity, it is necessary to properly consider the shape of the head (and draw from general to specific) and accurately calculate the proportions of the face. To achieve psychological similarity, it is important to talk to the model, try to understand her character, preferences, habits, and observe the environment in which a person lives and works.
Of course, this is not always possible, but it can be useful to determine the most appropriate pose and decide which character traits should be highlighted or placed in the center of attention.
The most important thing in the portrait genre is to outline in general terms the individual features of the model’s head and only then carefully study the details and how they relate to each other.
When one line drawing ahead, you need to make sure that its proportions, that is, the relative sizes of the constituent parts (eyes, ears, nose, mouth – we will look at them later), are conveyed correctly and accurately.
Detailed reproduction of details is not enough: if the general appearance of the head is inaccurate, almost always the result will be only a distant, unsatisfactory resemblance.
A square grid, which they know about from school, is useful in teaching. The same number of squares, but enlarged, need to be transferred to the surface for cool drawing a larger size. After that, you can easily transfer the strokes to the desired cell, observing the proportions.
It makes sense to learn to recognize the basic morphological, that is, the constructive characteristics of all elements of the face since it is precisely the exact reproduction of individual characteristics that makes it possible to achieve close similarity.
The eyeballs (and therefore the pupils) should look in one direction, the expressiveness of the eyes depends on this. Women usually have long and thick eyelashes, and the eyebrows are thin and well defined. The iris of a child’s eye appears large compared to the eyelids. In older people, several deep wrinkles diverge from the corners of the eyes, bags form under the eyes, and the eyebrows become unevenly thick and bushy.
An auricle is a special form of elastic cartilage. Although the morphological features of the ear vary greatly from person to person, in general, the shape of the ear resembles a seashell and, in general, is the same in men and women. The ears are often hidden by hair, and their expression depends on the exact position on the side of the head.
The height of the ear in an adult usually coincides with the height of the nose. Children’s ears appear large about the entire head. In older people, the ears tend to lengthen because the cartilage becomes thinner and weaker.
Drawing the nose is quite difficult – it is the most prominent part of the face, the appearance of which depends on the point of view. The pyramidal shape of the nose is formed by two small closely spaced bones and partly cartilage, and this is visible on the dorsum of the nose. Try cool drawing the nose in different positions, referring to photographs if necessary, if this will make it easier to understand its structure.
Notice that the bridge of the nose extends from the bridge of the nose to the tip of the nose, and the wings of the nose extending to the cheeks. On a triangular base, there are oval nostrils, converging to the tip of the nose and bounded by the wings of the nose.
It is necessary to work out the most important areas of light and shadow (most of all the light is usually on the back and tip of the nose, and the most intense shadow is at the base, near the nostrils) and mark only them so as not to make the cool drawing heavier.
The mouth is the second most expressive part of the face after the eyes. When cool drawing lips, the artist must draw a line separating the upper lip from the lower one (strictly on the semi-cylindrical plane of the jawbone), and observe the rules of perspective. The simple sketches below demonstrate some of the basic characteristics of lip shape.
For example, the upper lip is usually thinner than the lower lip and protrudes more forward.