Look at people (including yourself) in the flesh, in magazines, TV and other places and study the individual features. Practice drawing in my sketchbook a couple of pages per feature – different kinds of nose, eyes, ears, lips, chin, hair, eyebrows etc. If this helps use an enlarging grid to scale up a found image. Bear in mind that tonal variation, hatching an curved lines help model the form of facial features in the same way as they do in still life or landscape.
When you feel fairly confident draw an entire face.
I was not to worry if my lines and marks overlap and become untidy, and shouldn’t erase don’t erase mistakes. The workings and reworking’s are part of the thinking process and show are to show my tutor that I understand where you I went wrong and worked to put it right.
I was on holiday when I did most of this and had nearly run out of space in my carried sketchbook, so used loose sheets for most of it, although it is difficult to keep tabs on how much work is put into this when I am drawing people all the time. I used various media in my drawings and tried two sketches of a full face one in the main a line drawing of Miss Marple (Joan Hickson). The second was a version of my daughter who was posing with expression for a photo she was having done. This was drawn using charcoal and largely a tonal piece.
I have drawn all at a relatively quick pace as I know this is one aspect of drawing I am not good at. I don’t seem to have a brain that can compute quickly, but am pleasantly surprised my speed/accuracy ratio is getting better. This is a good exercise to show the difference in shape, tone, size of a humans features. I feel now that I would like to try and draw faces with less line and more tone. I never thought I would be inspired as humans have never been my chosen topic of drawing, but I am enjoying Part 4, and have treated myself to a book called, Figure Drawing For All It’s worth by Andrew Loomis.
For this exercise I was to use a limited palette of no more than 3 colours. Traditionally these are deep brown, sanguine (red brown), black and white, but I was to decide what colours would suit my subject. I could use coloured pencils or conte pencils. The colours I chose were black, red brown, and pale blue, the white in the picture was from the white paper I used. The brown and blue pencils used were Faber Castell polychromos, and the black Derwent Coloursoft and Polychromo. My picture was to be chosen from the previous exercise and developed into colour.
I was afraid of drawing this as I don’t find perspective easy, but having finished it I am pleased with what I achieved. I know the perspective is not completely accurate but I very much enjoyed drawing the Mill and it came out better than I thought it would. I wanted to try out using Golden Mean and made my chimney the main subject. I liked the way Edward Wesson managed to draw his main subject in detail and surrounding subjects as an impression and wanted to try something similar. I also had to think about the fore, middle and background of the picture, as this was part of the exercise. My buildings at the front of the picture were just an impression and I feel it worked well, on the Golden Mean the chimney and the front of the mill buildings were the nearest to me when I drew the sketch in the previous exercise, so I drew them in greater detail and they acted as the fore of my picture. Next my middle ground is the buildings leading off to the left of the paper as they were further away from me, these were drawn with less clarity. The background was shown by drawing the trees very lightly to the rear of the buildings, this gave depth to the picture. I omitted cars and other modern items to keep the picture more aesthetic, to add to the nostalgia and the time frame the Mill was built.
I wasn’t keen on the paper I used for the exercise as it was very grainy, and I was trying to achieve a delicate pastel look. It took several layers of pencil to achieve what I wanted and I tried a technique which I had seen before but never used. First I applied a fine layer of colour then using kitchen roll rubbed it into the grain of the paper and then dabbed with a putty rubber to remove shine, this kept the pencil looking fresh and not as overworked as it can sometimes look when many layers are applied. I didn’t quite achieve what I wanted as the picture was still grainy, but it worked better than I thought it was going to.
If I was to take this drawing further I would like to repeat the process on another type of paper and see if I can achieve a smoother finish, also I would like to perfect perspective. This exercise wasn’t easy as the Mill buildings are on many levels and cambers.