Pencil – Portrait of Johan

Pencil - Portrait of Johan

Here is a portrait of a family friend done in pencil. I used a photo of him that I took with the 20D as the reference image, the photo had good outdoor lighting and good facial expression so it was perfect for practicing portrait drawing.

The portrait is within the size of an A4 paper. It took about 8 hours to do, about 2 hours of it were spent at the initial layout stage; making sure the proportion looked right before I went in adding the details.

Click here to view the progress of this drawing.

After getting the outline sorted, I’ve begun focusing on the main features of his face; starting with the eyes and then working down to the nose and mouth.

The hair was done at a later stage and took just over an hour to do. I tried to avoid investing too much time in adding each and every single strand of hair perfectly in and concentrated more on the hair as a whole; getting the main highlights and dark tones in.

Overall, I am pleased with the finished piece, it’s by far the best portrait on paper that I’ve done to date. I think I’ve got most of his facial features looking right and his expression done fairly convincingly.

With hindsight, I think the eyes are slightly enlarged compared to the reference photo; about 5-10% too big and also I think the shading technique could be improved a little.

I’m really satisfied with how the hair turned out, I initially thought it would be a lot of work; but it was actually fairly straight forward in the end.

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