I basically used the only available window that I have where I can make this kind of a setup. Direct light doesn't usually reach it so I had to work with soft shadows. Achieving somewhat of an adequate likeness was difficult as always, but I think it's kind of alright.
Ok so now for the thoughts:
I was actually surprised, because I didn't expect such a big area to be covered by the mass light. I had some misunderstandings about how some areas should be affected by the light like the area around the cheek bone for instance, but actually when I look at it by using the planes it's absolutely logical.
At some places it's extremely subtle and that's of course because of the diffused light source I have. I checked the values of the halftone and the reflected/bounce light and indeed they were very similar.
Basically the areas of the nose, the eye, hair and barely at the lips. Again normally when drawing a face I would imagine also a highlight at the cheek bone, but this study proved me wrong.
At first I thought that the area beneath the chin wouldn't be so dark, but think in planes again neither the reflected light from the wall nor the skin of the neck can direct any light to that area. Maybe if the chest area was exposed and directly under the light source then this would produce some bounce lights, but at current state no way.
So the reflected light as mentioned comes from a white wall near my face. It's really interesting that you can get this amount of reflected light with such a weak diffused light source.
Visible beneath the chin area, in the corner of the eyes and mouth and also slightly between the mass light area and the reflected light area. I find it a really important part as once you have it really helps with showing the forms better.
Visible underneath the nose of course and also beneath my weird hair. The hair shadow, again, is something I don't pay much attention to when drawing from imagination but it really helps to sell the idea that this is actually part of the head.
Last edited by assumzaek; July 1st, 2014 at 06:28 PM.
Hi Assumzaek. Very nice portrait! Off the top of my head I think the first thing that would help your portrait would be to simplify the hair in the painting. You did very good work on the features of the face but all the texture created by those brush strokes in the hair is a little too distracting when compared to how smooth everything else seems to be. Keep up the good work!
Nice work. My main critique would be to pay close attention to your edge work so that you get a range of sharp and soft. If you lock your eyes on to the focal area...the eyes in this case...and paint the hair and edges of the rest of the piece from peripheral vision, you will get a slightly less rigid look to the piece. A bit of variation on the background values could also allow for parts of the form to fall back in space...like a slightly darker value on the background near the back of the head may improve the overall atmosphere.
Thank you Jason. Indeed I need to learn to create the focus with those portraits. I looked at the original again after some days and the edge of the shirt is terrible. I made the changes based on your feedback:
nice work. the hair is now handled beautifully. great work. i might quiet down the light on the neck by about five or eight percent...so the light is stronger up on the face and the neck shape calms down a little bit, compositionally. Great job and good progress.