Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Portrait of Joel Day 7 - Building a Likeness

Here, I'm at the exciting stage. The foundations have been laid down for the face and, now, I am tweaking to get a better likeness. Until I reach this stage, the facial features can be fairly characteristic without a reasonable likeness being achieved. This is because the contours of the face often play a large part in forming the character. It is especially the case with this subject, as the roundness of the cheeks and the babyish glow are as important as the features themselves in depicting the cute aspect which is very characteristic of Joel at this age.

I have roughed in the hair, at the hairline, to further aid in achieving a likeness. Most people look very different if their hair is altered in any way, so depicting the look of the hair around the face, helps me to visualize the subject and ascertain the accuracy of my depiction.

I have used yellows to bring a glow to the skin and reds to create a realistic pinkness. In this picture, the pinks are rosy due to the youth of the subject. I have exaggerated the lights and used a light touch even on the darks, to give a particularly light feel to the work. This seems appropriate, given the age of the subject and his pure, translucent skin tones. I have left the palest highlights with barely a wash, in order to increase the depth of the picture and accentuate the play of sunlight on the skin. Usually, I use indigo or grey/blue to build up realistically dark shadows, but I have kept these dark colours to a minimum here to allow Joel's pure youth and the glowing sunlight to shine forth more obviously.


  1. It's changed so much! The eyes look far less promanent than they did before. It's already starting to look like Joel.

  2. Thanks, Immy. His sister thought it was a photo of him when she saw it on the computer! x

  3. Proves how good it is. And you were having a confidence slump. I bet that boosted your morale.
    I just noticed you changed the comment form.
    You obviously got the problem sorted out.

  4. Your feedback boosts my morale, Immy. It is so helpful to have comments.
    The problem seems to be sorted out with the comments, for now - some things have been changing for no apparent reason. x


Thank you for reading my blog. I appreciate your comments and feedback. Vicky