View Full Version : Pencil Portrait of Mima as a young girl

07-21-2001, 04:34 PM
After reading Lee Hammond's books on pencil portraiture, I decided to take a crack at it and here is the result. I drew on ivory mat board with 2B technical pencils. This is my first post...so bear with me! Thanks.

07-22-2001, 10:40 PM
Hi! Welcome!

This is a charming image and you have captured some elements of it very nicely. In particular the left side of the face - they eye, eybrow and cheek are very subtly and sensitively handled.

I would suggest that you try to apply this approach to more of the picture as some of your rendering is a bit harsh. For example the shadow on the right side of her face seems overly dark with a very hard edge. An area such as this cheek may appear dark relative to what is next to it. Remember to check how dark it really is against other dark areas rather than the light immediately surrounding it.

You might want to practise mark making with your materials - concentrating on tone. Although the eyes and lips are dark, much of the rest is quite close tonally. See if you can work your way across a surface going from the darkest marks you can make through to the very lightest with no harsh transitions in between to practise controlling tone.

You have a lot of hard edges throughout - see if you can soften some of them. For example, parts of the mouth or eyes that are in shadow will have less constrast against the shadow near them so you can soften the edges at those places - perhaps even lose the edges here and there. You might want to apply this in particular to the hair on top of her head which seems to be sticking up in the air (although she does not seem to be jumping and there is no other evidence of a strong wind). Look again at the shapes here as they seem to be overly generalised and unconvincing.

I hope you will continue on with this portrait and let us know how it turns out. :)

07-23-2001, 12:09 AM
Yes, thank you for your suggestions. I agree about the hard edges. Now, as I look back at the photo, I see that's what the drawing needs. A certain softness would make the portrait more precise. Thanks!

07-23-2001, 05:00 AM
Ahhhhh! That is a bow on top of her head! :D

07-23-2001, 12:33 PM
Yes! It's a bow! And now I see why it looks like hair. It needs to be softer! Thanks again for the help. It's great living and working out here in solitude, but this kind of interaction with other artists is really important to me and I'm so glad I finally found it here!