Devastacio: Thanks for the crit devastacio, the reason why i don't get a wide variation of values isn't because im "lazy," it's because for the vast majority of my day I am in school. I sketch during class with a regular #2 pencil and don't really have the opportunity to switch to a harder one. This weekend I will have a chance to use your advice, so we'll see how i do then.
This is just a rough wip of a portrait of president obama i'm doing in photoshop, crits are appreciated even though i'm not very far along in it.
EDIT: btw I am not using the color picker or tracing the photograph (which I will show when I'm done) but using it merely as a reference.