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Old 12-01-2017, 03:51 AM
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Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

This month is going to be a big challenge for you guys. We've done individual features quite a bit and it's time to put it all together in a portrait. But a likeness is critical in portraiture so I selected some well known faces for you. I hope you can find at least one in this crowd to interest and inspire you. Be careful though, it's easy to lose a likeness. Little things tend to add up quickly and the image turn out not to be what you want. Hint: go slowly - take your time. There isn't any rush. Accuracy is far more important than speed and that's what I'll be looking for. Now I know I'm a slow drawer, but any one of these would probably take me over 100 hours to complete and I probably wouldn't finish it by the end of the month. That's me ... others are much faster ... but remember that haste makes waste. In part this exercise is to help prepare you to do commissions where likeness is the top priority .. so I'll be picky.





This is the type of image I am used to having for a reference - except the quality of this is much higher due to being a studio shot. This was taken just a few days before his assassination on April 14, 1865 - he died the next morning around 7AM.
































Have fun with this ... good luck!

Last edited by SparrowHawk7 : 12-01-2017 at 03:57 AM.
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Old 12-01-2017, 09:07 AM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

I will also point out that if anyone has a particular portrait of their own that they wish to draw that is fine - just be sure to post the reference photo along with your drawing.
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Old 12-02-2017, 01:17 PM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

Thank you, Ken - a very challenging challenge!
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Old 12-04-2017, 08:47 AM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017



Started on my own reference photo
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Old 12-05-2017, 05:36 AM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

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Old 12-05-2017, 10:54 AM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

Ken, those are some great portraits. I have cowboy Clint and Gandalf on my ever growing "to draw list" for this winter....not sure if I'll have time to get those this month.
I'm so new to human faces and need a little more practice, actually have a WIP of my grandson at 4 months...ugh...baby faces.
I may need your help and expertise on it...
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Old 12-05-2017, 12:11 PM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

Quote:
Originally Posted by Schuee
Hi Penny,

That is very good ... really. There are a few discrepancies from the reference strictly speaking. Her left side eye is not opened as far - the lower lid is slightly higher. Actually all the discrepancies are on our left side. Her eye is tilted very slightly higher - including her forehead which also slightly higher (higher hairline). Her mouth is slightly wider on our left and lifts slightly higher. And the side of her face on our left is slightly wider with the jaw line corner also slightly higher. None of this appears to be anything major but you may have a nagging feeling that it's close but somehow not quite there yet. Of course, you know the subject personally while I only have the reference to go by so you may have nailed her likeness in actuality. It is always helpful with commissions to have more than one photo to work from or the opportunity to actually meet the subject IRL ... sometimes that isn't possible so we can only do the best we can do.

All that being said, I think you should be quite proud of what you drew as it is very close to the reference and may perhaps be the spitting image of the subject. (where did THAT phrase come from?). Very nice work.
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Old 12-05-2017, 12:14 PM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

Quote:
Originally Posted by George Sonner
Ken, those are some great portraits. I have cowboy Clint and Gandalf on my ever growing "to draw list" for this winter....not sure if I'll have time to get those this month.
I'm so new to human faces and need a little more practice, actually have a WIP of my grandson at 4 months...ugh...baby faces.
I may need your help and expertise on it...
If you get to those after the thread ends, just post your work in the thread and I'll be notified - or you could post them (one at a time) in the main forum. I don't have any experience with babies (either IRL or drawing) but a likeness is a likeness at any age ... at least drawing them I wouldn't worry about breaking something - although their warranty period ought to still be in force. At the very least, life insurance.
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Old 12-05-2017, 12:36 PM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

Thank you very much Ken for the encouragement, and for pointing out the discrepancies. The photo is of me as a child. I am pleased I managed a likeness. Even if I don't alter the drawing, having the faults pointed out is very helpful.

Will have to do some research on "spitting image". 😁

I have another one I want to try - photo of my brother-in-law as a toddler and will make a start on that.
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Old 12-05-2017, 12:43 PM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

Merriem Webster gives:

"Before we had spitting image there was another version of this unsavory-sounding expression, which was spitten image. Spitten is believed to be a corruption of the words “spit and,” as spit formerly had the meaning of “perfect likeness.”

Another source suggests

"...as like him as though he had been spit out of his own mouth"

😎😊
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Old 12-05-2017, 01:14 PM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

Quote:
Originally Posted by Schuee
Merriem Webster gives:

"Before we had spitting image there was another version of this unsavory-sounding expression, which was spitten image. Spitten is believed to be a corruption of the words “spit and,” as spit formerly had the meaning of “perfect likeness.”

Another source suggests

"...as like him as though he had been spit out of his own mouth"

😎😊
Eww. Gives added meaning and greater appreciation to the term "spitoon".

I'm glad you found my observations helpful .. you have improved greatly since the challenge threads began which is why I was pickier than spit with it. For most commissions I've done all I got was the one photo and no more were forthcoming as the subject had since died (usually a pet). That made getting the image as exact a reproduction as possible since that's all I had to go on. The trick is to be able to bring the drawing as close to life as possible - so the viewer half expects to see the subject move momentarily. This doesn't often happen nor does it come out in a photo of a drawing on the net - at least generally. I have been fortunate enough to have several such drawings - 1 for a client who was amazed that I had captured the spirit of the cat in the drawing. That wasn't me obviously, because I had never met the cat, but I was wanting to get my drawing as close to the photo as possible and it worked out. All that is to say that it's important to get everything as close as possible to the photo we have available ... and why I was so picky about the little things. They can add up to a nagging dissatisfaction with the drawing though you can't quite put your finger on what went astray.
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Old 12-05-2017, 03:04 PM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

Thank you, Ken. I do appreciate the time you take to help. It must be an advantage to know the subject you are asked to draw. I tried to draw slowly, but found it diffuclt and must improve at that aspect.

You have obviously honed your skills of observation and discrepancies must jump out at you. I am trying to observe more closely.

Your animals drawings are full of character and must bring great pleasure to their owners.
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Old 12-05-2017, 05:22 PM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

Quote:
Originally Posted by Schuee
Your animals drawings are full of character and must bring great pleasure to their owners.
The responses I've heard are all good but I'm not terribly happy with many of them. One client in particular was (and still is) exceptionally pleased with the likeness I got and even told me I captured the personality of the cat completely. I have to take their word for it because I was really very unhappy with the result. But they offered far too much money for me to turn it down .. it is by FAR the worst reference photo ever taken IMO and to make matters worse, it was the only photo they had of their beloved (deceased) pet. It was also my most challenging drawing to date. How I managed to get the eyes right is and always will be a mystery to me.

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Old 12-05-2017, 05:35 PM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

My goodness! That is a dodgy photograph. How well you conjured up the cat from it. I can see why they were pleased.
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Old 12-06-2017, 12:25 PM
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Re: Monthly Drawing Challenge - 12/2017

Thanks Ken, this looks very interesting... I'll try to make it, yet I'll start in the end of the month since I'm working in my Acrylics challenge ... Now I have to think which one is more appealing for a drawing... hehehe
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