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Thread: Portrait Comparison

  1. #1
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    Portrait Comparison

    As a refresher, I'm very new to the forum... this is only my second post. Self-taught, I've been drawing/painting for about three years, and for the last few months my study is that of photo realism.

    I'm still discovering new techniques and trying my ass off to figure this out... I clearly spot the differences but I'm diligent to learn. Thanks for your words.
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  3. #2
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    Feb 2013
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    Not bad overly. There are two main problem areas:

    1) Face features are not constructed with 3d form in mind, hence all these numerous little imprecisions in copying 2d shapes from the photo add up to a "something not right" feel.

    2) You see value fluctuations that are not there. Squint at the reference photo. That's what you need to transfer to your drawing. Here's the same fragment from photo and from your drawing:
    Name:  value_a_b.jpg
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    Notice how it's almost a flat tone in the photo yet you invented a lot of fluctuation in the drawing. Try to look at the value composition as a whole. Don't look at little fragments and then try to guess their value. Always search for largest possible shapes that have same (or near same) value, and state them as such in your drawing.
    Last edited by LaCan; March 30th, 2013 at 12:35 PM.
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  5. #3
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    Ah, thank you so much. I know I need to work a lot on values... seems I have a tendency to create detail that doesn't actually exist in the photos I reference... deeply appreciate the feedback.
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  6. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaCan View Post
    2) You see value fluctuations that are not there.
    Spot-on observation.

    I might add that he also doesn't see value variation that ARE there.

    OP: the best thing for you would be drawing still lifes. From life, not photos. It takes a lot of skill to read a photo; more skill than required to work from life.
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  7. #5
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    Do you mean that you intend to work in the tradition of the photorealists, or are you trying to learn to make an exact copy of a photo by eye? Two very different things. I think the photorealists used all kinds of drawing aids and tracing methods to get such exact results. Whereas, if you mean you're trying to train your eye, you really are better working from three dimensions, as arenhaus said. Later, when you work from photo reference, you can make better sense of what you're seeing.
    I was once on the receiving end of a critique so savagely nasty, I marched straight out of class to the office and changed my major (sketchbook).
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