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Old 02-19-2012, 08:00 PM
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Mandorkthegreat Mandorkthegreat is offline
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How to paint men's hair?

I feel like I have tried to mix every color to get the right shade of his hair, but I have no idea. Any idea of what to mix/how to mix it/tips? I am having trouble painting men's hair because I cannot seem to get it to sit right on the forehead. I am also having a bit of trouble with sideburns.
Sorry for bombarding you with these questions.
Here's the guy's face I am painting. (Yes, that is a bunch of bacon)
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Old 02-19-2012, 09:57 PM
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painterbear painterbear is offline
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Re: How to paint men's hair?

Hi Mandorkthegreat,
Welcome to the Watercolor Forum.

I'm not much of a portrait painter, but hopefully some of those who are will come along to help you and answer your questions.

In keeping with our Forum Guidelines that say

Quote:
If you are stuck and don't know where to go with a painting, ask for help from your friends in the Studio.

I've moved your thread here to the Studio.

Sylvia
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Old 02-19-2012, 11:18 PM
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Re: How to paint men's hair?

Can you show us some of your attempts? Sometimes it can be really hard to offer suggestions without seeing exactly where the difficulty lies.

I noticed that you're new here and sharing work can be scary - especially when it's work you don't feel confident about. But this is a very helpful group and we've all struggled at one time or another. I think you'll find plenty of support if we can see what's giving you a hard time.
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Old 02-19-2012, 11:58 PM
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birdhs birdhs is offline
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Re: How to paint men's hair?

The best suggestion I can offer is to go to the Portraiture Forum and start looking at as many threads as you can. This will give you an idea of the many possibilities.

Find several that are similar in style to what appeals to you and try to copy them - only the hair if you choose. As you copy you will find yourself beginning to be more observant.

Then when you have done a dozen or so, you will be ready to portray this handsome dude in a way you like.

It is what works for me, others will do things differently.

and post ALL your efforts, that way we will be able to help even more

life is good

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Old 02-20-2012, 12:28 AM
maryinasia maryinasia is offline
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Re: How to paint men's hair?

I would use primarily browns, yellow ocher, blue, may some reds ... I would enlarge the photograph to show clearly how many different colors and values are in in his hair in different places -- to make the hair "sit right" make sure you make it 3D and sometimes add hair shadows, both in his hair and on his skin

It's a lot easier to paint 3D from a photo without a flash and with a clear light source
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Old 02-20-2012, 03:54 AM
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Re: How to paint men's hair?

Start with raw sienna and start adding darks. You could boost the saturation in your photo to find other colours:



Doug
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Old 02-20-2012, 05:44 AM
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Re: How to paint men's hair?

So much can be said on what color to use. Each brand is slightly different and each mixture you make will be different. My advice is to forget about specific colors and brands and practice mixtures on a separate sheet. To me, what is more important is the SHAPE and VALUE of the hair. Look closely and where it is light, leave it white until you have painted in some of the darker values. You don't need to be very precise. It looks good if you paint in a fairly darker strand and while wet drop in some bit of yellow or orange and let the colors merge. You get a nice variety of color. When that dries, you can go back with a "long leaf shape" stroke. Here's an example of one of my paintings that shows what I mean. Notice how important the little strands of hair are. Hope this helps.
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Old 02-20-2012, 04:07 PM
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Re: How to paint men's hair?

it all depends on the rest of your painting- what style- i have been loading my brush up lots and just dabbing a water wash very much like the above painting.
OR i paint the lighter bits first- say like a yellowey wash- wait for that to dry and then do the darker streaks with a fine brush over the top so youve got some hair marks. id upload it- if i could find it
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Old 02-24-2012, 06:19 PM
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querin querin is offline
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Re: How to paint men's hair?

I start with a wash of the lightest color i see i don't think of it as hair I look at the mass ofshapes and color that are in various areas keeping the lights and build up may washes accordingly, then before the last wash i will paint in strands and finish that with a wash over the area if it look as too pasted on this will soften the look is i need them pronounced I will leave it.
querin
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Old 02-26-2012, 05:53 AM
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jackiesimmonds jackiesimmonds is offline
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Re: How to paint men's hair?

Can I just say that if you are trying to paint from this particular photo, you are on a hiding to nothing (hope you know what that means). The photo has been taken, probably, with a flash, which means it has flattened out the form. Notice how the light on the watercolour portrait above reveals the form beautifully, we fully understand the shape of the head -the front plane containing the features; the side plane of the head. We also see how the hair falls over the skull underneath, something you should be thinking about, when you say you cannot get the hair to "sit right on the forehead". If you think of a curved form, and have the hair clinging to the form you will get it right. Not that there is much information in this photo.

I personally would NOT paint from this photo and try to stick closely to it. The colours are deceptive, the light is unhelpful.

Having said that, If you get the drawing of the features absolutely right, the colours will not matter too much - it will still recognisably be this person. I know this is a bit extreme, but look how this artist has used outside-the-box colours.......yet you would always recognise this guy.

http://portlandopenstudios.wordpress...-open-studios/

so, perhaps do not stress about the exact shade of brown for his hair; get a better-lit photo, side lighting is good, and then have another go.

also, if you need more specific advice, you really do need to show your efforts.
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Old 02-26-2012, 12:13 PM
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Re: How to paint men's hair?



I am trying to self teach everything. This was my first attempt at mixing my own colors. I am still trying to understand shading. I don't have a picture of the finished product, but I just added a blue wash background, fixed the hat, and added a black shirt.
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Old 02-26-2012, 12:38 PM
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Re: How to paint men's hair?

Mandork,
You did a very nice job with the skin tones and the lips; the hair and cap look like you perhaps needed a bit more water mixed with the paint to let it flow a bit. You can darken a tone by glazing layers of color, just let each glaze dry completely before adding another one on top of it with a light touch of the brush.

Since you are teaching yourself to use watercolors, have you checked out the Beginner's Corner in The Learning Demos? If portraits are your interest area, you could check out that section as well. Seeing how others approach a subject step by step as shown in these demos is a wonderful way to learn techniques by trying them yourself. The link is in a sticky at the top of The Learning Zone (or in my signature line).

Sylvia
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