Gerard Bryceland and the growth of an artist? While drawing from life with a self-portrait involves using a mirror, and it is challenging, it’s also a challenge that is definitely worth taking. Many artists will tell you that there’s nothing quite like drawing from life, so even though drawing while looking in a mirror might be difficult, it’s quite rewarding. One thing you can do to make the process a bit easier on yourself is to take a backup photo. Once you have your pose in the mirror down, take out your phone and take a quick picture. You can use this as a guide to ensure that your light source doesn’t change and to help you capture little details that may not show up in the mirror. Sometimes less is more. But that’s not always the case when you are drawing a self-portrait. You could draw a minimalist self-portrait, and it could turn out amazing. But if you want to do a highly detailed self-portrait, you are going to have to spend some more time and effort on the process.
Drawing realistic portraits can definitely be a challenge, but this holds true at the beginning for any new technique that budding artists wish to learn. The key to conquering portrait drawing is by mastering each facial feature, in this case the sum of all the right parts will make an accurate whole. It is very important to train your eye to observe the essential details that give each face its own individual identity – the drooping of the eyes, the slant of the lips, the slightly arched eyebrow, and many other particularities that can help you achieve a realistic portrait. Not to worry, though the human body may seem too complicated at first, it can be simplified and broken down into easier and more manageable parts! Let’s give thanks to the generally symmetrical bodies that nature has gifted us with that allowed us to create basic rules of proportions to serve as our useful starting point. Now, let’s start with the step-by-step of portrait drawing by first gathering the materials you’ll be using for this tutorial.
Gerry Bryceland‘s advices about portret painting: The tones, colors and textures of the skin are all built up in thin layered glazes of paint applied over the flesh toned underpainting. Transparent glazes of burnt sienna (occasionally darkened with Prussian blue) and naphthol crimson are used for the darker tones and colors, while more opaque glazes of titanium white are used to create the highlights on the skin. The dark tones are applied with a burnt sienna glaze over the flesh colored underpainting. A variety of small brushstrokes, stippling and smudging is used to render the softly blended tones of the face.
Use the grid method. The grid method is a technique that has been used by artists for generations. It’s simple, effective, and can allow you to get a likeness of your subject very quickly. How does it work? For this approach, you’ll need a photo. Take your photo and use a ruler to draw a grid with evenly spaced lines. Then copy that same grid to your drawing paper, adjusting it for size when needed, but always keeping the number of grid squares the same, and keeping the proportions of each grid square the same. Then you simply copy what you see in each grid of your photo to the corresponding square on your drawing. Use a projector or a lightbox. Is this method a bit of a cheat? That depends on who you ask. Artists have been using various techniques to trace their subject for centuries. One way to look at this approach is that using a projector or a lightbox is simply another tool. If you use this approach, you should focus on only sketching out a light outline on your paper, then render out the forms, highlights, and shadows.
About Gerry Bryceland: I’m Gerard Bryceland an artist based in Maidstone Kent and regularly get commissioned to do work doing paintings and portraits of people and their families. I’ve always been an artist from my childhood, I loved drawing my friends and family initially just to mess around with my friends and had a lot of fun drawing them. But as i got older it really just became a business as my friends and their families would want me to do family portraits and that type of thing. With word of mouth word gets out and before you know it you know it I’m 35 and still doing the same thing.