View Full Version : Class 34, Female Portrait Reference Images

Anita Murphy
03-01-2006, 09:08 AM
OK I know we did this before but lets do it again? It's fun, see :D
Besides you probably all went and changed your choice of images while the lights were out!

Remember to pick a reference that has nice cast shadows, preferably taken without a flash (tendency to bleach out all the details).

If you are going to take your own ref for this class I have picked up a few pointers from portrait artists.

1. Have natural directional light (eg from window) on one side of the face.

2. Have a white sheet/canvas/board on the other side to reflect gentle light back on the darker side of the face. This will leave the cast shadows but still allow you to see the detail.

Or alternatively stand outside in the shade but with directional light (not brilliant rays of sun!!!!) for example on a porch. Direct sunlight has a tendency to act very like a flash! Also more often it is above and then is rather unflattering for the subject as you get funny things happening with nose and chin shadows!

Back lighting is difficult but having lighting from two directions is feasible if you want a window behind for the background.

From experience I have also learned that what makes a nice photo does not necessarily make a good portrait, or drawing reference. Think carefully when you choose your reference about what you want to achieve with this drawing.

Mary Woodul
03-01-2006, 09:13 AM
Anita, excellent help with this for choosing our reference. Looking forward to the class.:clap: :clap: :clap:

03-01-2006, 10:46 AM
I second what Mary wrote. One thing for sure, it will be interesting and fun!

Anita Murphy
03-01-2006, 10:55 AM
Thank you Mary. Can't wait to see your reference!

Hi Reinhard! So great to have you here!

I am going to post my ref as soon as I find one! Cos I'm doing the class too!

03-01-2006, 11:27 AM
Anita, does that mean I can "rip you apart ????????" :evil: :evil: :evil:
But in know that you will give the proverbial snowflake's chance in hell.

Anita Murphy
03-01-2006, 11:32 AM
I can take it Reinhard!! I'm tough!!! :D

03-01-2006, 11:38 AM
I can't wait for this class to start I am soooo excited!!!!I had a ref picked out but I think I am going to change it. Thanks for the picture taking tips!!!! Brenda

03-01-2006, 11:52 AM
OH GOD!! I forgot--Rein is a subbie--aw, what the heck-I'm in--I can take it!! Still lookig for a decent ref!

03-01-2006, 12:25 PM
I will look for a ref with your recommendations in mind Anita!
TY for doing this!:clap: :clap: :clap:

Mary Woodul
03-01-2006, 02:16 PM
Now that I have the girls with me they will have to let me try Anita's recommendations. Hope they cooperate!:confused:

03-01-2006, 03:52 PM
Anita I am looking forward to this class also gf :), and thank you for the informative photo info. :)
SCREEEEEEEECHHHHHHHHHHHH....oops cover your ears, its just my desk moving across the classroom floor :D
Judi, I am squeezing my desk inbetween you in Mary. :)
Oh geez the girls are back together :grouphug:

Anita Murphy
03-01-2006, 04:14 PM
Reinhard made a couple of suggestions to me that I thought were brilliant!

Firstly - in the last class we did a greyscale to help see the different tonal values on the ref. Some people did find it quite hard to then make the transitions smooth between different tonal values. SO for this class we suggest that you do another greyscale from 10 - 1 but this time instead of having a hard break between each shade make it so the transition is smooth. So instead of having ten blocks from black to white you are going to have a one block that goes from very dark to very light. Does that make any sense at all???? I am SO bad at explaining things - Reinhard HELP!!!!

Second thing to think about! OH NO NOT ANOTHER!!!!! SHHHHH Quiet in the back row!!!

PAPER - I don't know about the other women in this class but I spend way too much money on expensive face cream in hope of having a lovely smooth complexion and wouldn't want anyone drawing me on really textured paper to show every pore!! Female skin tends to be finer and the texture smoother than mens. So suggestion is to pick a paper that is smoother in texture - I have used Bristol Smooth for the demos. Check your references and choose your paper accordingly.

Sults - WOOOHOO GF - good to have you back in the class.

Mary - If you can get those girls to sit still long enough for you to get your lighting right I want to know your secret!

Brenda - glad you are so excited about the class - I am a nervous wreck!!! :eek:

JayD - You know Reinhard is very gentle really! And boy are we all going to get it right!

Judy - Looking forward to see what you pick - you always have such great refs!

03-01-2006, 05:29 PM
ummm Teach? (raises hand vigourously)....stop tickling me Judi, sticks tongue out at her.

Can you list the materials needed for the softer skin of the female?
I do have Strathmore Bristol Vellum but it is #300 (is that ok?)
I only have 0.5 HB mech pencils, do I hafta buy a diff one?
what are the points and leads we will need?

& yes ty for doing this, & ty RRbro for being such an eagle of a subbie. :clap: :thumbsup:

Anita Murphy
03-01-2006, 05:39 PM
Sults - use what you like best in the way of pencils. I use a 0.5 mech pencil with 2B lead and a 5H wooden pencil. I think preference is entirely personal.

Bristol Smooth is lovely - my favourite paper.

Vellum has a little more texture to it, but only very slightly. (Just had to dig around to find my Vellum pad to compare!) Try your greyscale on it and see if you like the way it looks.

03-01-2006, 05:58 PM
If I may "jump in " here. The reason I suggested the "transition scale" is that in the ongoing class I noticed that rather frequently tonal values were very close together with nearly no, or VERY little, transition. When we want to do realistic drawings we have to separate the shadings in 2 main categories.

1. Cast shadows (shadow thrown by an object) - example shadow of the nose - shadow under the eyebrows - shadow under the chin. Always, when a part/object throws a shadow, this shadow is rather harsh

2. Form shadows (shadows indicationg an underlying cause - bone - muscle - fatty tissue) like a cheek. These shapes are VERY soft and VERY gradual. It is for these shadings that I suggest to try the "tonal transition scale".

I tried to do this explanation quick and dirty. See that the shadings, cast by light, are rather dark and have a very short transitional zone, while the shadings, indicating form, have a narrower tonal range and a very smooth transition just to indicate form.

Does this make any sense? So, when drawing, put very darks and lights close together only when a light source causes that.

p.s. sorry this example was done on cartridge paper where the back shines through. oops!

03-01-2006, 06:09 PM
Wooowww bro ty yes makes perfect sense (funny that is where I am at now on Joseph's portrait, shading in soft shadows to show roundness of his cheeks and under his eyes). Great demo too :thumbsup:

Anita Murphy
03-01-2006, 06:17 PM
Reinhard - lovely demo - you are an angel!!! Thank you!

Anita Murphy
03-01-2006, 06:39 PM
OK guys - the info is coming in thick and fast now!!!!

More great ideas from Reinhard that coincided with thoughts I had.

Possible added equipment for you to bring with you to class

BLENDING EQUIPMENT - chamois, tissues, cottonbuds and anything else you can think of. OOOOOH and don't forget your fingers!!!!

We want to stress that there is not just one way to produce a realistic portrait. And we also want you to produce your OWN style, not just a copy of someone else's.

Any suggestions anyone else has to make please feel free to add them for discussion in the group.

03-01-2006, 07:10 PM
:thumbsup: Don't forget to rate this thread :thumbsup:
Anita, my gf is looking for her photo, she took some beautiful photos awhile back and posted them on her blog but she took them down and now I am harrassing her to find them. lol, she said she dreamed of me the other night, I was thinking hard of her finding her photos, so hard she felt me. lol, I had not seen her in awhile. Isn't that wierd?

03-01-2006, 07:10 PM
Hey All:wave:
This is the ref I had planned on doing since I selected Dad-thought I would like to do a portrait of my Mom at 18. Two years before they met on a blind date. My Dad always said it was the best 3 dollars he ever spent-the cost of the marriage licence.:)
I see cast shadows and lighting from two sources.
Whatcha think?

03-01-2006, 07:14 PM
Judi, this is a lovely tribute and a great reference. Full of hard and soft shadows, showing so exquisitely the differences between women and men. I can't wait for you to start this one.

p.s. she reminds me of the young lady in "Dirty Dancing".

03-01-2006, 07:17 PM
Oh a blessing on it then! Yippee!:thumbsup: TY Rein!

Mary Woodul
03-01-2006, 07:24 PM
Wow Judi!!! You have a beautiful Mom. If I am understanding Reinhard correctly this one really shows the transition from light to dark on her left side.

03-01-2006, 07:26 PM
Thanks Mary-I will tell her that tonite. I think she is beautiful too.:)

03-01-2006, 07:40 PM
ok, this is the one that I will be working on. This is my mother-in-law.

03-01-2006, 08:12 PM
She is gorgeous JayD!:thumbsup: :thumbsup:
I think she will be a lovely subject!

Anita Murphy
03-01-2006, 08:38 PM
Judi - What a great picture!!!! Reinhard is right she does look like Baby in Dirty Dancing!

JayD - So this is your m-i-l who presumably is Danish as you said you wife was. She is fabulous! (I'm a little biased when it comes to Danes :D )

Sults - Looking forward to yours.

I can't decide between doing my mother or someone else.....hmmmm decisions!

03-01-2006, 08:42 PM
Beautiful photo of your mother Judi. It will be enjoyable for you to draw that one.

And your mil JayD, just wonderful! Beautiful eyes.

I have my mother searching out old photos of her mother that she said she wanted me to draw. So by the weekend I may find something, otherwise its back to my daughter or I'll be setting up some interesting self portrait photos. :)

Mary Woodul
03-01-2006, 08:45 PM
JayD, another gorgeous woman, with very interesting features to draw.

03-01-2006, 10:31 PM
Anita you made perfect sense and the visual by Reinhard reinforced everything you described. I think you two are going to make a wonderful team!!!!:clap: :clap:
Judi that photo of your Mom is beautiful; a perfect companion piece for the other class one of your Dad!!!
JayD your MIL is beautiful and that hair will be gorgeous with all the contrasts!!
Still trying to decide on mine. Was going to take a photo of a friend but she isn't cooperating, (just had a BD and is still going through the I-am-so-old mopes. lol! She is only 32!!)

03-01-2006, 10:55 PM
In case anyone is interested--Bobbi is on the english side family related to the Throckmorton (jan's grandfather turned down the title of Lord Throckmorton during the depression) and Mountbatten families which of course are VERY distantly to the Royals. The title has since been retired and the estates reverted to the crown. Interesting story as I have heard it. My mother-in-law could be a Queen Elizabeth stunt double!

03-02-2006, 02:35 AM
I want to apply for this class .We have done this exercise and I am dreading it to do again that's because i dont have a lot of female photographs with me and also Idont have a camera so I wont be able to to click photos.I have these two photos.If they qualify then its fine and if not then I wil have to search for it again :rolleyes: .
hoping to listen from you soon

03-02-2006, 06:08 AM
JayD. LOVE the reference. This really cries out to be drawn SOFTLY - so you will definitely need Bristol smooth carton and anything that will allow you to very subtly play with tonal values. But I know that you are up to the challenge.

Pal, I like both references and they have a charme each on their own. I vote for the second reference as your first choice. The reason? You have a better lighting and more distint shading. The first picture I would draw then as a sencond project since here you can discover the subtle changes ages makes in faces. I don't know if you are familiar with Andrew Loomis. He was an artist and art teacher 40's - 50's. His books can be found online for free. I suggest you look for "Drawing the Head and Hands". On the pages 86 & 87 you can study how ageing softly changes female faces.

03-02-2006, 08:16 AM
Judi your mom did resemble Jennifer Grey, very pretty mommy

Jay your mother in law looks very royal and classy

Pal I like the second pic too.

Anita & RRbro, my gf sent me a few photos but I just realized they are from her web cam so this is the best lighting I can use. I love this photo of her, hope you let me use it.

I am showing the untouched color one & the greyscale I made from it.



03-02-2006, 09:13 AM
Sultry, sis, this IS an interesting and rather challenging photo. I do see interesting shades there and knowing you I will have to remind you to go VERY LIGHT with the pencil to NOT OVERDARKEN the initial shadings. I lnow you are up to it!

p.s. but still awaiting the answer of the teacher, I'm just the subbie, you know!

Anita Murphy
03-02-2006, 09:23 AM
LOL Reinhard and here was I waiting for you to comment on Sults ref!!

Sults I think this would very much suit your style - You could manipulate it a little more in PhotoShop - try playing around a little with the brightness/contrast controls and see if you can get some more variation.

Pal - I like number two too! Such a delicate face and I think you would do a lovely job on this.

03-02-2006, 10:48 AM
Couldn't get BD girl to budge so here is one of my niece that I de-colorized then enhanced. Will it beOK? http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/02-Mar-2006/67372-Eva.jpg

Anita Murphy
03-02-2006, 11:12 AM
Brenda - what a very pretty girl!!! As I suggested to Sults - try the brightness/contrast controls in PhotoShop and see if you can get more tonal values into the ref.

Reinhard - what do yo think?

Anita Murphy
03-02-2006, 11:12 AM
Woooops - double post!

Mary Woodul
03-02-2006, 11:28 AM
This Ana Paula again but I would really like to get Daniela for this one. If I am not lucky, is this one alright?


03-02-2006, 11:54 AM
Thanks Anita. She stills lives in Luton; does some kind of work with foreign diplomats children in London. (Single but all the family are working on trying to fix her up poor girl!) Is this better?

03-02-2006, 12:11 PM
Reinhard - Yes, I am familiar with andrew loomis. In fact I have his five out of six books and I love them. Currently I am reading his book on perspective.I am really liking it.
Sultry , Anita - The second picture's of my maternal grandmother and the first is of my Mother in law.I want to draw my grandmother portrait but this is going to irritate my mother in law :rolleyes: so I will make hers too.In order to have peace in the house hold :D :lol:
I have started on my grayscale.I am planning to make this grey scale on both canson (The wrong side) and hot pressed watercolor paper ,so that I can see the effect.I wont be able to get any other paper than this.
talk to you all again

Anita Murphy
03-02-2006, 12:27 PM
Mary - Ana Paula is just so pretty!!! I love this picture - but because the transitions are really soft and there are no strong shadows I think you need to be very careful about how you draw this. Maybe Daniela will lt you take a nice picture!!

Brenda - I think looking at that the first image was better. One thing that I also do while I am drawing is to intesify contrasts so that I can better see the shadows. Reinhard mentioned this in class 33 - using posterization to see the blocks of shadows.

Pallavi - ever the diplomat!!! Good thinking - do them both! :D

I am hoping to post class 34 some time during Sunday.

03-02-2006, 01:36 PM
Hi, may I join you

Anita Murphy
03-02-2006, 01:54 PM
Come on in Les! Please post your ref pic for us.

I forgot to say earlier - No copyrighted images please!

03-02-2006, 03:07 PM
Anita, I know that this comes oh so close to Sult's style, but we have to scold her if necessary, to hold back on the blacks all over and get her to see the softness and smoothness, although I knwo she can - does she as well???????

Brenda, absolutely no doubt that this is a great subject. You have to be aware however that this is a "flashed" photo which will make it more difficult to see all those form shadings. Not impossible, just a little bit more difficult. I'd take it and concetrate on the smoothness of this young lady.
btw. I like the first picture better since it is a little "crisper".

Pal, so we'll have a double portrait from you. For the younger lady I'd try the smoothest paper possible and for your MIL - if you dared to show the structure of her skin - you could use paper with a little bit more tooth.

Les, absolutely. Please show us the reference you wanted to use.

Mary, what a lovely picture. So soft and tender. You HAVE to do this one as well. Adorable, absolutely adorable. I am falling in love with this child by looking at this photo.

From a technical point of view this will be a challenge since the tonal differences are ever so small and the transitions are spread smoothly out over a wide area. This would be a great drawing for Bristol smooth with a chamois as blending tool with some real dark spots like those expressive eyes, and the shading thrown by her dress on the skin on the neck (plus a bit the mouthline and the corners) and the nostrils. These would be my tonal value anchor points. The hair could be just softly indicated so not to disturb this delicate young face.

03-02-2006, 03:12 PM
ahhh bro are you saying my latest drawing of my son is too dark? Or are you saying the photo I picked is too dark?
Anita do you think I need to lighten the greyscale? Or do you think it needs to be sharpened? Tried to sharpen it but it looks grainy when I do.

Anita Murphy
03-02-2006, 03:26 PM
Sults - I increased the brightness and the contrast. Have a look and see if this looks any better to you.

Anita Murphy
03-02-2006, 03:27 PM
Reinhard - she will know by the time we have finished with her!!!!!

03-02-2006, 03:28 PM
Sults, sis, I have to admit it is a bit on the daker side. If I may offer a suggestion? When setting the darkest area of a drawing, reserve the blackest black for the pupils and have the other daker areas correspond to this anchor point.

Maybe one good idea might be to punch holes into your greyscale, place it over the reference photo, find the corresponding tonal value and do the same thing on the drawing. Adjust if necessary.

Anita Murphy
03-02-2006, 03:33 PM
Reinhard - Do you think this would work? If you take the greyscale that we suggest for this class without sections, and out of the center cut a narrow band - the greyscale could then be moved along the ref until it matches the right tonal value. What do you think? Rather than just having holes punched which would miss out parts of the greyscale.

03-02-2006, 03:39 PM
Ok I am totally confused. about the greyscale.
Anita that looks better ty.

Robin Neudorfer
03-02-2006, 03:48 PM
Flu bug in the house, two down for the count so far...
I have been photo diving all morning.
I want to get a post in here so that I can follow close behind. There are some great references being posted. It will push me to finish JOSH.
I had wanted to draw my husbands boss, as she has a very unique look, however it was difficult to get a picture. I didn't really want her to know, in case it needed to go in the round file.
Here are two that I am considering...my daughter. I will continue to dive, and better yet...get the camera out.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/02-Mar-2006/30341-Rebecca-laugh.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/02-Mar-2006/30341-Rebecca-Dance.jpg

Anita Murphy
03-02-2006, 03:49 PM
Sults - see PM about greyscale.

Anita Murphy
03-02-2006, 03:50 PM
Robin - lovely pics - I am going to start diving for ref too when I get back from the framers.

03-02-2006, 03:50 PM
Reinhard - Do you think this would work? If you take the greyscale that we suggest for this class without sections, and out of the center cut a narrow band - the greyscale could then be moved along the ref until it matches the right tonal value. What do you think? Rather than just having holes punched which would miss out parts of the greyscale.

I think that artists who like to work in pencil (graphite) charcoal etc. should try and buy a Value Scale at their local art stores. The one I have is a GREAT tool when trying to replicate values from photo to drawing :D

Here is what mine looks like:
Notice the notched areas where you can make comparisons from your values to the values on the value card.


Murray :cool:

03-02-2006, 04:47 PM
Hi all, thank and here tis, a piccy of my step daughter I took it for her for some thing. Have reduced it to greyscale and also darkened it on PSP9 for some shadows. Am thinking of leaving the hand out as it looks a little posy.

Any comments welcome, oh have another which I started on my travels, will it be ok to post it as a separate thread for valued C&C?

03-02-2006, 04:56 PM
Les, i don't know about Rein and Anita but i love this. what a pretty woman!

Sults..love your sexy looking ref.;)

Robin, your daughter is adorable.:) the one w/the huge smile is great but all those teeth? oh, my.........

03-02-2006, 05:03 PM
Robin, both are fascinating picutres and both would be great to be drawn. I vote for the photo on our right. Here, although not too easy, you have some areas where you can smooth the tones out over a larger area. The picture where she laughes is more dynamic for sure but firstly it is pretty flashed out (see red eyes) and secondly, the flying hair would make it difficult to draw.

Murray, thanks for the greyscale. I downloaded it, printed it on a heavier paper with my Laserjet, cut out the holes and here I am.

03-02-2006, 05:06 PM
Les and Billie, sorry I but I can't see the photo you both are referring to.

p.s. Now I see it and vote for "ABSOLUTELY YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS". There is cast shadow, form shading and everything inbetween.

03-02-2006, 05:12 PM
Hiyas Murray :wave: I like that greyscale too. Anita explained to me the one she meant also so I am not confused anymore.

Hey, Robin nice photos I like both but the second looks clearer in tones.

Striver, pretty step daughter you have and that hair looks like alot of fun to draw.

Billie, hugs, ty, lol you should see the sexy pic I really wanted to do (but felt it might be too much for class). ;)

Hey Bro, can we do that too? I have so many old greyscales all over the place (with no holes or strips cut into them and they are messy). I was telling Anita in a pm I want to laminate the next grey scale I do in a no gloss laminate finish, I know the copy & printing stores do lamination here.

03-02-2006, 05:17 PM
Hi Class I found these possible models which one would you like me to do.
No.4 I actually draw shortly after becomming member of WC maybe it could be funny to do her again now??:)


03-02-2006, 05:23 PM
Hiyas Karsten, nice to meet you :)
Wow nice ref photos but I loveee the first one, that eye has so much detail begging to be rendered. I also like the black darks in it too. lol yah I just can see Anita & bro rolling there eyes.

Mary Woodul
03-02-2006, 05:37 PM
Mary, what a lovely picture. So soft and tender. You HAVE to do this one as well. Adorable, absolutely adorable. I am falling in love with this child by looking at this photo.

Thank you Reinhard! Yes I will do it also because her eyes are challenging and i want to try them again. I will also get a shot of her sister Daniela and try to get both of them in.

Murray, the grey scale is fantastic, I will also do what Reinhard did.

Sults, the eyes in the reference are beautiful!

Robin, you have a gorgeous daughter. Beautiful eyes!

Les, beautiful step daughter! That photo will be a challenge with that incredible hair.

"Karsten" very nice references too!

03-02-2006, 06:05 PM
Hi Class I found these possible models which one would you like me to do.
No.4 I actually draw shortly after becomming member of WC maybe it could be funny to do her again now??:)


I actually like number 1 and 4! :)

Remember, that you should try and use "copyright free"
images, so you don't run into any problems in the future with the original photographer. If you have a photos that are not your own, make sure you have permission to use them! ;)

Murray :cool:

Anita Murphy
03-02-2006, 06:18 PM
I really like no 1 and 4 too - in fact had thought about 4 for to do for the demo.

Murray - all those images are in the library. I think I know every face in the library by heart!!! :D

03-02-2006, 06:22 PM
I really like no 1 and 4 too - in fact had thought about 4 for to do for the demo.

Murray - all those images are in the library. I think I know every face in the library by heart!!! :D

Thanks Anita :) Didn't know we had such good portrait images there...guess I'll need to have a look around the RIL more often!

Sorry karstenbuch...didn't mean to imply anything...just being carefull :)

Murray :cool:

Anita Murphy
03-02-2006, 06:26 PM
The guy who took no4 is a professional photographer I think - he posts a number of photos - unfortunately he usually makes the image size a little small. They are usually recognisable by having a black border round them. Can't remember his name off the top of my head.

Mary Woodul
03-02-2006, 07:31 PM
Anita and Reinhard, this is what I was able to get from Daniela today, but I don't know if this one has too many or too sharp contrasts. At least I still have two days to continue taking pictures of Daniela. She is not at an easy age to photograph because of the braces and skin that break out.


03-02-2006, 07:36 PM
Hi Guy's

Question? When are we to start on this lesson? :confused: sorry if I have missed it somewhere along the line.


Anita Murphy
03-02-2006, 07:39 PM
Mary/africanart - class will be posted on Sunday

Mary/Mexico - This is a nice picture too - those girls look alike! You have to catch her when she isn't aware of having her photo taken!

03-02-2006, 08:05 PM
Mary, I love this picture. It has stark contrast, an interesting distribution of shaing and light, dynamics, her head casting a shadow on her right shoulder, subtle play of light in her hair. The interesting hightlight in the white of our right eye. Nice, nice.

As for the skin, it is up to the artist to define how close she wants to come to skin inperfections or smootheness.

What I could envisage for a young woman like her is a photo where so looks dreamingly into either the camera or into the distance, this is the age where she is so open for all things to come, caught between child no longer and woman not completely. Which pose would she like best?

Mary Woodul
03-02-2006, 08:46 PM
That sounds good Reinhard, Thank you! I will have to play around with her and see what I can come up with. If I fail well, I'll try both of these.:)

03-02-2006, 09:09 PM
Mary, I am in the background doing guide stuff right now but I thought I would pop in and agree with Rein--I think its wonderfu and it has a very interesting angle--Mary Meets Perspective!!! Robin!!!!!!!

Mary Woodul
03-02-2006, 09:48 PM
Thank you JayD, and I hope everyone goes to see that fantastic shot of your's in the yearbook. I agree with Anita, now you have to draw that one.

03-02-2006, 10:11 PM
Anita and Reinhard, this is what I was able to get from Daniela today, but I don't know if this one has too many or too sharp contrasts. At least I still have two days to continue taking pictures of Daniela. She is not at an easy age to photograph because of the braces and skin that break out.


ok...I'll throw my two cents in :)
I like everything about the photo exept the bright white on the forehead.
To be honest I think it's a bit distracting, as it's the first thing I noticed when I viewed the photo. I do like a lot of contrast but I think that maybe the highlights could be spread out more on that side of the face or maybe just toned down on the forehead. Just my opinion Mary :)

Murray :cool:

03-02-2006, 10:22 PM
I'm going to use it as my female drawing!! Just kidding. I have it on the table--I am studying it to draw. But Bobbi comes first!

Mary Woodul
03-03-2006, 06:43 AM
Thank you Murray, I agree with you and I like your suggestion.

JayD, you can use it anytime.

03-03-2006, 07:16 AM
Guys, dont forget to show Anita and Rein and Mary your support by Rating this thread!!!!

03-03-2006, 08:52 AM
One little thought additionally to the tools.

I am drawing a lot with "F" grade pencils now and find the tone rather pleasingly between the already pretty black of "2B" and the a little too light of "2H". For the smooth tones in the female portraits it might be worthwhile to give it a try.

03-03-2006, 09:34 AM
Okay I took the first and re-edit it and tried to take out some of the 'flash' effects. I think it is better now but I need an expert..Rein..Anita? (Oh and it is clearer on my end than it is here for some reason) Brenda

Anita Murphy
03-03-2006, 09:36 AM
That looks much better Brenda! Don't forget that using the original colour shot helps too.

Good thinking, Reinhard. I love my "F" grade pencils!!

03-03-2006, 10:54 AM
Hey, Murray--I am not fond of the bright light either but I see that a something to be fixed later. Just do the whole face in subdued tones and then liftout the highlights with blue tack or a kneaded eraser.

Fireman's kid
03-03-2006, 11:37 AM
Anita, I have a question before picking my female reference. There was once talk of doing an advance portrait class for children. Do you know if that class is still planned?

The reason I'm asking...I have a beautiful picture of my daughter Abigail that I absolutely want to draw. If we have a kids class I will save it for that and look for something else. If we don't have a kids class I will use it for this one. Of course I could use Abby's picture for this class and do one of my other daughter for a kids class. Just thought of that. Would that be okay?

Also, obviously I won't be done my male portrait (or my cp drawing) before this class starts. I will try to finish my grandfather's portrait in time to jump in this class and start my female one. I finally picked up the pencil again yesterday :clap: and plan to do more today. Hope to post an update of whatever progress I've made tonight, no matter how little it is.

Sorry I haven't been posting the last couple of days, but I had to stop posting in order to do some actual drawing. Reading threads and posting in them can be a great form of procrastination. :o

Robin Neudorfer
03-03-2006, 12:28 PM
OMG! you're suppose to pick up the pencil?
No...really, have you ever seen the artwork done using ones feet or their mouth. JayD, just thought of another class...that way we can stay in touch and draw at the same time. Not sure I could get the hang of typing with my toes but drawing maybe.

Fireman's kid
03-03-2006, 04:16 PM
Robin, you are too funny! :D Yes, you actually have to pick up the pencil. I've learned that staring at a drawing and ignoring a drawing are not effective ways for getting it finished. Even when you try really hard! :lol:

I bet I could learn to draw with my toes. I can pick things up with my toes very easily. In fact in the hands and feet class I drew my foot holding a pencil. Just another one of my many talents. :rolleyes:

03-03-2006, 04:21 PM
Robin I have read the book of Joni who did beautiful drawings with her mouth because she was paralized when she was younger from a diving accident.
Her work made it to greeting cards and I was amazed at how she had so much detail in it.

Stacy, do not feel so bad gf, I just barely picked up the pencil 2 weeks ago to draw my son to join the 101 class male 33 (then my scanner would not work) so I could not post my outline drawing or my stages, so I decided to not post it in class.
I had not been drawing since a little after class 26., which was months ago. So I know you can do it girl and can't wait to see your reference. I see your giving wonderful subbie advice in the prior classes too.

Anita Murphy
03-04-2006, 09:39 AM
Stacy - there probably will be a child portrait class but not immediately after this one. Think we'll be ready to try something different after so much time with portraits!

03-04-2006, 03:08 PM
Just wanted to know where are we supposed to post the greyscale which was proposed by reinhard and anita.
Is the feamle portraiture going to start on sunday.Keeping my fingers crossed.
After portraits maybe some can show us to do landscape in graphite.that would be a real challenge especially to show many kinds of texture through the combination of many techniques.or we could do buildings and castles in graphite.that way we will also get the perpective thing in the course and also know how to make the perspective work especially with big drawings where drawing the horizon and VP will be difficult.:)
JUdi- that way I will be able to do that clock tower which you corrected long time ago in the perspective class.:D
hope everybody liked my idea. just giving my two cents:D

Robin Neudorfer
03-04-2006, 03:16 PM
I like your ideas Pal.

In fact, JayD/Anita, can we start an suggestion box for what people want to learn, draw, interests ....? It would help me when I think perspective directions, because some view Perspective as a form of math and quickly run away.

Anita Murphy
03-04-2006, 05:09 PM
Pal - female portrait class will start Sunday - probably Monday your time - allowing for me being on the other side of the world from you! :D

There are a lot of classes already in the pipeline - amazing classes - I can't wait for them - I have my pencils already sharpened!

Robin - I would love to do more street scenes.

Robin Neudorfer
03-04-2006, 05:19 PM
I have made a note Anita.
Yours are on it as well, Pal

Fireman's kid
03-04-2006, 05:26 PM
Anita, here is the drawing I want to do for the female class. She's a very young female. :) This is my daughter Abigail. The picture was taken two summers ago on the beach. She was 5 at the time. My pre-class drawing of her (twin) sister Emily was taken on the same summer vacation.

Can you please tell me if this is a good reference to work from and if young females are allowed for this class? Thanks Teach!


Anita Murphy
03-04-2006, 05:30 PM
Stacy - what a lovely girl!!! Can you greyscale it for me?

Robin Neudorfer
03-04-2006, 05:42 PM
She is beautiful, Stacy.
I am going to throw out my opinion...I think any female should be acceptable. We need to work on something that is truly enjoyable, and has meaning to us. We aren't talking about commissioned work here. To learn and perservere though the difficult stages, it must be something that speaks back to us.

Fireman's kid
03-04-2006, 05:58 PM
Thank you Anita and Robin! I think she's beautiful too, but people might accuse me of being a little biased. :D

Here is a grayscale...

Robin Neudorfer
03-04-2006, 06:17 PM
Stacy, are you sure that is not you as a child?
You are entitled to be biased. Where would our children be if they did not capture our hearts 100%?

Anita Murphy
03-04-2006, 06:26 PM
Stacy - I agree with Robin - you need to do something that captures your imagination and a picture of your daughter will do that. The very even tone on the right side of her face is going to need very careful working - you might find if you play with it in PhotoShop you can boost the tonal differences and make it easier on yourself.

Reinhard - need your opinion on this one!!!!

03-04-2006, 06:58 PM
Anita, Stacy can do it!! She is up to the challenge IMHO.

03-05-2006, 01:36 PM
I'd like to try this class. Can I use this reference photo? Not much contrasts but its the best I could find.

Anita Murphy
03-05-2006, 01:42 PM
Yosh - welcome to the class! As long as you are careful you should be ok with this reference.

Mary Woodul
03-05-2006, 02:28 PM
Stacy, she is beaming with personality and beauty. You have to draw her!

03-05-2006, 03:01 PM
Yosh, I call this the "TFP" typical flash photo. I am working on one right now myself. The personlity and the smile are great so you MUST do this. As Anita said, you have to be very careful with the shading, but we'll manage. I'm sure of it.

Fireman's kid
03-05-2006, 04:17 PM
Thank you Anita and Rein for approving my photo. And Rein for saying I am up to the challenge. I hope I don't let you down. :eek:

Robin, this...Stacy, are you sure that is not you as a child?
made my day because when they were younger the girls didn't look anything like me. Doesn't seem quite fair since I'm the one who carried them around for 9 (well actually only 7 1/2) months. :rolleyes: I see a lot of my dad in Abigail. I think her identical twin sister looks more like my husband. People think I'm crazy. :lol:

Mary, thank you for your kind words. They make a mother's heart sing! :D

Hi Yosh! :wave: Welcome to the class.

03-06-2006, 07:37 AM
Here is my selection for the class:
I ruled out all the others. If this one is not good, let me know, I will continue to look.

Anita Murphy
03-06-2006, 07:42 AM
Midge - this is a nice picture. The tonal values on the right side of the face are quite subtle so you will have to be careful there. Looking forward to seeing your work. Remember to do your line drawing very carefully and lightly. Get the positioning of features right at the start of the picture and it will make the whole thing much easier.

03-06-2006, 07:58 AM
Hi all
Just coming on to 2am so thats eight and a half hours done and time for some shut eye, hopefully.Busy am tomorrow but perhaps late afternoon another crack at it. See if I learned anything from the last one.

03-06-2006, 08:20 AM
Midge, I love your reference. This will be a nice balancing act between realism, smootheness, detail, shadow, and light.

To all of us who will participate. Mike Sibley (Animal Forum in ArtPapa), has published a book he calls "From Line to Life". think of that title when starting this project. A good initial line drawing can and will help lateron to have sizes and positionings correctly. Even the first, initial likeness will be there. I had read in another thread where a very good artist (Isabel Chiang) posted that she invested about 15 hours into the initial line drawing. So please don't rush!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anita Murphy
03-06-2006, 08:25 AM
Reinhard - this is such a good point about not rushing the line drawing. I have found that the pictures that turn out to be most recognisable the likeness was there from the start. Otherwise it becomes a never-ending battle.

Anda G
03-07-2006, 01:16 PM
I am so happy to be able to take this class. :clap:

Here are three possibilities. Her name is Effie. :)

Andagail :wave:

Anita Murphy
03-07-2006, 01:45 PM
Anda - what a lovely girl!!! I like all three! The lighting is similar in all of them so pick the one you like best - and we'll see you in class! :wave:

03-07-2006, 01:59 PM
Anda, I vote for number 3. I think the shading is best there and the picture is the clearest.

03-08-2006, 03:29 PM
Hi guys... :wave:

I feel like sneaking in here since I didn't get very far with my Class 33 cowboy (yet).... but I value you input on the reference pictures very much and would like your advice on one I will definitely LOVE to do. It's my mother when she was my age.... and it caputures her essence beautifully.


What do you think?

Thanks for looking,

03-08-2006, 03:53 PM
Amira, this is a nice picture. Soft and smooth. Go for it!

Anita Murphy
03-08-2006, 04:26 PM
Amira - super reference - we're waiting for you in the classroom............... :D

Robin Neudorfer
03-08-2006, 04:35 PM
yeah Amira! I remember my sisters looking like this.

03-10-2006, 08:07 AM
Thanks for the thumbs up - I'll definitely give this one a try!