Project Self Portrait : Exercise – a Self Portrait

8 - Eigth Self Portrait in Conte and Chinese White Pencil

I was looking forward to this exercise, the only other time I had done a self portrait was at the start of this course last year which was basically a 40 minute sketch to christen my sketch book. I did quite well with that and I thought I would do great after learning so much.

Self portrait in my 6 x 9 Sketchbook
Self portrait in my 6 x 9 Sketchbook

I started by drawing with ballpoint in my sketchbook, the first sketch took 25 minutes and really didn’t resemble me at all. The shape of the head was good and I got the hairline just right, even the eyebrows were ok but everything else was well out. I was drawing looking into a mirror on my coffee table so it was difficult to keep the angles every time I lifted my head up from my sketchbook.

1 - First Self Portrait in Ballpoint - with hair
1 – First Self Portrait in Ballpoint – with hair

The second drawing was a bit better, I always seem to start on the left eyebrow and then draw in the shape of my head from the top of my ear to the crown of my head and then draw the rest of the top left-hand corner of my head. Then when I have something to work from I draw in my nose and then over onto the right eyebrow, shadow on the right eye and then mouth and chin, with the folds of skin from my cheeks framing my nose mouth and chin. Although this technique helps me work fast sometimes it doesn’t come together as it should do and I end up looking like someone else. I not only look older in the drawing below but from a distance I look like a posh toff with a monocle in my right .eye

2 - Second Self Portrait Ballpoint and Oil Pastel
2 – Second Self Portrait Ballpoint and Oil Pastel

Again the drawing below didn’t come together as I’d planned and I ended up looking like a completely different person with just my features all out of proportion, namely my chin and area above my upper lip/below my nose.

3 - Third Self Portrait in 4B
3 – Third Self Portrait in 4B

I showed the photos above around, my girlfriend said they don’t look like me while all my students said ‘Mr Mark’ straight away.

From there I had some light brown ingres paper left , about A4 size, so took a photo of me laid on the sofa and made a sketch in soft pastel, I should have taken aphoto of each stage of the drawing as it looked great before I messed up on the eyes and made myself look like an alien with larger-than-life eyes.

4 - Fourth Self Portrait in Soft Pastel
4 – Fourth Self Portrait in Soft Pastel
5 - Fifth Self Portrait in Watercolour Pencil
5 – Fifth Self Portrait in Watercolour Pencil

I decided it was time to draw a proper self portrait in a proper mirror, so I took my Derwent watercolour pencils and watercolour drawing pad into the bedroom and produced the drawing above in just under 2 and a half hours over 2 evenings. The drawing is spot on, it makes me look about ten years older as others have enjoyed pointing out but that’s the electric light in the bedroom. I have tried and tried to get a better photo of the drawing as it looks great but the photos I have took do not show the colour of the hatching to be as vibrant as it is in real life.

 

6 - Sixth Self Portrait Hard Pastel
6 – Sixth Self Portrait Hard Pastel

The drawing above was started as a hard pastel sketch to show how the left hand side of my face caught the light from a lamp directed at my face and how the most of the right hand side was left in shadow apart from part of my cheek, ear and below my eye lid and it was perfect until I messed up and went overboard on it and then ended up trying to draw my entire face in detail making this self portrait look like like a rubber horror mask from a joke shop at the seaside.

7 - Seventh Self Portrait in 4B
7 – Seventh Self Portrait in 4B

The drawing above was the second self portrait in 4B pencil, it took me an hour and a half and is a perfect likeness, one friend said that it is me in another 10 years, unfortunately I do look quite old with my specs on but it can’t be helped.

8 - Eigth Self Portrait in Conte and Chinese White Pencil
8 – Eigth Self Portrait in Conte and Chinese White Pencil

I produced the drawing above in my lunch hour at work. I left a drawing board at work for me to use when I have a bit of freeetime and I had an A4 size sheet of blue ingres paper in my sketchbook so I decided to see what I could posing in the front camera of my tablet. However when I opened my artist wrap up, all I had in there was conte pencils in black and sanguine and a Derwent Chinese White Pencil that had been sharpened to over the half way mark.

I’m long-sighted which is probably why I messed up on the other drawings with my glasses off but this one came together really well. I took it home to touch up and do do so I put t between the pages of my sketchbook, which is quite thick. When I get home the paper seemed to have been compressed inside the book and it was almost impossible to do anything with it, which is probably for the best as I am really happy with this finished piece which I feel looks great.

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Part 4 Drawing Figures: Project – Self Portrait – Exercise Drawing Your Face

12 - Face ears and kneck

For this exercise I started off with 5, five minute drawings of my face describing different angles of my face and head.

I made the first two 5 minute sketches looking into the forward camera of my tablet that was sitting on the table. This meant I was looking down at it (with my head slightly to the right) so all attempts at trying to give myself a chin failed as it disappeared into my neck (the disadvantage of having an overbite.

1st 5 minute Sketch of my Face
1st 5 minute Sketch of my Face

The second sketch was again made looking into the front camera this time with my head level looking forward, which meant the camera was looking up at me and up my nose, which actually came out looking like it wasn’t my nose at all. If I cover up the bottom half of the paper it does look like me but with the dodgy nose…no relation.

2nd 5 Minute Sketch
2nd 5 Minute Sketch

The third sketch was done looking into my bedroom wardrobe door, with the bedroom light on the right of me it cast some really dark shadows across my face. Even though others would probably say that it did not look like me and I actually wrote that it did not resemble me but every time I look at it I see more of myself in the drawing.

3rd 5 MInute Sketch in Shadow
3rd 5 MInute Sketch in Shadowim

Again the fourth drawing was drawn looking into the wardrobe door but this time with my face turned to more of an angle allowing for more light and less shadows. I decided to keep my glasses on again, just like in the first 5 minute sketch and just like in the first sketch my glasses made me look older.

4th 5 minute Sketch with Glasses on
4th 5 minute Sketch with Glasses on

For the last drawing I was facing the other way, the drawing looks more like a cartoon, which I think looks quite good . The eyes however should be looking at me and I just can’t think how I managed to the pupils so far over. There isn’t much resemblance at all, probably because the face is too long.

5th 5 Minute Sketch almost cartoonlike
5th 5 Minute Sketch almost cartoonlike

After the 5 minute drawings I made 5 more quick sketches concentrating on the overall shape of my face which wasn’t an easy task. This time I bought a mirror from the twenty baht shop, and while I was buying the mirror and some toys for the kids my youngest daughter lost their tablet in the shop and they spent the next two hours crying until their mum came to pick them up.

6 - Overall Shape
6 – Overall Shape

Anyway, like I said this wasn’t an easy task, for one reason, as I said before I don’t have much of a chin and so the bottom half of my head is not as defined as the top. I decided that it looked like a cross between an hexagon and an heptagon and so did 5 sketches trying to perfect the shape.

7 - Overall Shape a bit better
7 – Overall Shape a bit better

The drawing above is probably the closest shape to my head but I didn’t realise it until I drew the chin in afterwards with a biro, after I had finished the exercise.

8 - Furthest from any likeness
8 – Furthest from any likeness
9 - Another Dodgy Shape
9 – Another Dodgy Shape
10 - Almost the Right Shape
10 – Almost the Right Shape.

At the time I thought that the drawing above was a better likeness and so I drew the shape across the page trying to get a sense of likeness. This probably did work as I realised it wasn’t the right shape and that it was too wide.

11 - Trying to get the right shape
11 – Trying to get the right shape
12 - Face ears and kneck
12 – Face ears and neck

Eventually I drew something closer to the shape of my head and then drew in the ears and chin and then the neck and continued to correct the shape of the neck until it was spot on.

My First Self Portrait (From a Photograph)

It was lunch time at school yesterday and as usual I sat on the top floor looking for something to draw. I decided on a self portrait, I’d never drawn a picture of my own face before and wondered how long I could get a drawing looking anything like me, so I took a photo with my mobile phone and started sketching away.

Self portrait in my 6 x 9 Sketchbook
Self portrait in my 6 x 9 Sketchbook

I started on my right eye, left in the photograph working down to the tip of my nose then with my nose complete moved onto my left eye. Within 40 minutes I had my drawing looking something similar with the eyes and nose almost perfect. However the mouth was a little to high and so it put my face out of shape a little making it more round than long.

Photo on my Mobile Phone
Photo on my Mobile Phone

For a first attempt I’m quite satisfied and even though my face was slightly out of shape I know I can only improve.