- Lesson details
In this lesson, Iliya takes the classical portrait one step further with the inclusion of one of the most emotive parts of the body: The hands.
In the last part of our Russian Academic Drawing Course, Iliya taught us the anatomical structures of the head & neck. In this next part, we take everything we’ve learned, and use it to take on one of the more popular challenges of the Russian Academic Method: The Portrait.
In this famous assignment from the Repin Academy you will be drawing a portrait from life (or from provided reference) at a large scale over stretched paper. You will be introducing the hands and the upper body into your work, requiring more planning and development of the composition in this challenging project.
The New Masters Academy Coaching Program directly supports this Course. If you enroll in the coaching program, you can request an artist trained in the Russian Academic Method including Iliya Mirochnik himself. Click here to enroll in the Coaching Program.
- Graphite pencils
- Kneaded and Hard Erasers
- Roll of Paper, Smooth Sketchbook paper
- Light source
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a big fan of at the Academy known as the portrait with
hands. And so this is
both an assignment that incorporates all of the
things that we've covered in the head and then also
the upper body and of course the hands. So here I have a
board with paper stretched on it, just like I demonstrated
earlier, and I even put a little bit of a tone on it to kind of
kill the value of the paper that I thought was maybe just a
a little bit brighter than I need. It also creates an
interesting texture that
we'll see how we can adapt to the assignment. And the medium
that we're working with is also going to be
unusual. We're going to try this in charcoal and that will
also be a part of all these things that we're going to
explore in this assignment. So without further ado, let's say
hello to our wonderful model Chrissy and
let's get started.
of the head and neck, let's see how we can put them to use when
working from a live model.
This is one of my favorites from school because I think it
takes you a little bit past an academic exercise. It's about
the psychology of the model. It's about getting character,
not simply by figuring out angles and proportions, but telling
some kind of a story with the gesture of the head in relation
to the gesture of the hands and the placement on the page
With that, let's begin.
glasses. Fantastic, okay.
So let's begin with a sort of a larger piece of charcoal
that's kind of easy to move around
and can be smeared with the hand. Let's see if either of these
work. This seems okay. I tend to think when they're as large as
this it's sort of a problem. So I like to kind of snap them so
that I have a bit more control and keep in mind more control and keep in mind
that when you're starting on something that's a little bit
larger you need to
learn, you need to step back a little bit more.
Chris, could you put your head down? Just tiny bit. Yeah,
excellent. Okay, and so of course with the heads and hand -
hands actually -
I'm setting a timer because we need to take a break as
does our model, so I'll set a timer and
we'll work within those confines. So,
okay. So the important thing right is to just lay everything
in as broadly as possible. Don't think of construction at
the moment. Just think of a general placement and the
important thing here and the hard part here would be
figuring out what the size of the head is because the size of
the head on the page in relation to the size of the
hands and where things are, right, so kind of move all the
way from the head into the hands and see
where everything is, right? Just kind of lay things in.
Use the space as much as you can.
And we also have a little bit of the cloth, right, the little
cloth on the sleeves which is an opportunity to go into
that again and
see how much
is really needed to explain and demonstrate some of that
Okay, so don't over - don't spend too much time in one area
moving away from it, right, so that you can see everything in
And see and the charcoal is a great medium because
it allows you to kind of move around the page quickly and
keep in mind right don't get caught up in the act - like
just get the approximate placement, right, the approximate
placement of the hands because we're going to get into that
later, right, when we do spend a specific actual time on them.
And so you want to
just get an idea of where - of where they are, right, where one
is and if it's above the other but don't worry about the exact
placement of any of the of the specifics like
the fingers and all that stuff that'll keep changing
and we'll compose that as we go so it's not simply
copying. It's more just figuring out what might what
interesting and how you group them. So
we'll be talking about that when we get there but
it's fine. The sternal notch and find the center line, which is
actually somewhat easier to find here because of the
clothing, right, it kind of just hints at
the center line.
Right. The important thing is to kind of right away take the
proportion right of the hands after they're in place
in their entirety and then compare it to the head.
Right, something like that.
We'll see where that goes, right? Immediately begin to lay in
bit of the hair, right, to just see it as a mass.
Which I think your head can come down just a tiny bit.
it'll keep coming up and that's fine.
we'll see what happens here. Right? The advantage of having a
block with charcoal is that
you can turn on side and smear it.
It's also extremely easy - it's considerably easy, way
easier to erase than some of the other
media that we have worked with. The conte or the
And then maybe begin to get into some specifics, get into
something that's maybe a little bit more of a
take an axis across, and right away figure out
where the orbits are,
maybe even erase into it and established the upper lid.
We're not too concerned with the eyes at the moment in terms
the gaze and all of that, the sort of the slightly more the
psychological aspects of it. We're taking our time with
that. So just place the orbits and then we'll figure out what
the eyes are doing eventually.
Switching to something a little bit smaller. That's maybe a little
bit too hard.
How's this one?
All right, that's fine.
Right, just at the moment just be approximate. Don't
worry too much about proportions.
I think the head can come down just a bit more
And so, right, use your eraser.
Smear a little bit and just
see I'm not being too precise, not worried about line, and just
figuring out what's happening with the head.
You can see the sternocleidomastoid there a
little bit and then the clavicle.
We'll figure out what the shoulders are doing after
that. Kinda move to something a bit softer, right, in order to
establish the hair, the shadow from the hair on to
other sternocleidomastoid actually. There are parts of the neck is
important, right, because it creates
a volume actually more important. We're
not going to ignore the background here.
We need to have it up to a point right so
don't be afraid to get
a tone in there so that we can
right? The key here is to keep it pretty loose.
And the thing with the charcoal right is
it'll pick up the
sort of the texture of the paper, but also since the
paper's stretched onto a board and even if it isn't
you'll realize that it begins to pick up a little bit
of the texture of the board underneath as well. So that's
totally okay, the way to solve this is to pretty much just apply
enough of it
and you'll be and you'll be all right.
So yeah, so you want to try to get as much of this stuff on
the page as soon as you can
to establish those general tilts, proportions, and character,
all of that.
Without being maybe overly
though. I do have a tendency - I do kind of want to, especially
a person in front of me right, you just want to get into
all those things that are really important to
for our purposes here we're just going to try to hold off
and curb that enthusiasm.
So yeah, all of this stuff and we're good and then kind of some
of - just get those large core and cast shadows, think of them
as one, right, core and cast on the sleeve.
Let's make work.
Let's take some proportions. And then let's see. Just how
many times the head can fit all the way down to the one.
It's about about two and a half head heights is
where the hands are right, so
I don't have my my needles with me. So just use something like
this or one, two, three, actually put the hands a little bit
lower than they are in real life, but
not entirely opposed to this at the moment, right? Keep in mind
the basic idea of proportions, right? They have to look
they don't have to necessarily be accurate but
I do see that the hands actually have come up a little
Chrissy is it possible - I think
in general you've kind of brought them higher if you
can bring them to - yeah. Oh, yeah exactly, also I did
place them correctly just so they have
moved up. So no, no big deal.
it's totally - it happened. That's the way it goes. Right?
We're human and we move and I personally
posed a lot
for friends of mine and and
for the class and I'm terrible, I move all the time.
So I know what it's like.
I'm an unruly model.
So yes, I'm just trying to create this environment, right,
just getting a tone on the paper. We might
erase whole areas of it, might bring it back. There's a
certain energy that goes into a project like the one we're
It's just that there's a lot happening. You're trying to
control a larger area of paper or canvas and
it's exciting. It's exciting and and I'm
I kind of get carried away by the process a bit.
How's this? Alright, that's fine.
Yeah, so this maybe is not
the way you used a charcoal before.
Usually when I see it here in school it's usually
it's either gestural approach
where you're just moving things around, kind of the way that I
started this or it's something -
maybe that elbow's off the page. I don't know. I think we'll see
Or it's like eventually or its
just a careful - like your carefully adding it on
until you get a nice flat
area of tone. I think we're doing something that's kind of
in between because we're going to get specific.
I'm going to get specific but not yet. It's just way too
hard. Ah this
is the maybe the preferred medium. There we go.
Right it's enjoyable because you can move things around, you can
sort of scribble.
Get things on the page as fast as you can.
That's the excitement, I lose all the stuff
and then I have to run around the studio
catching it if it falls.
So yeah, so see I'm just trying to get a tone for the
background in order,
right, in order to establish where the head is.
Now I'm moving my hands as like
rather quickly, but I think
you know you don't need to. This is just trying to get some
stuff on the page as fast as I can.
And then right, getting back into these parts, the specific
shadows combining. In charcoal when you in in in charcoal when you
start out you don't have the necessarily - like you can't
really started out the same way you would if you were working
a harder and more controllable medium because the whole idea
is that you're just kind of thinking at least at the
beginning more in terms of mass
So keep it light, keep it loose.
And you see that obviously going from a blank piece of
paper to something on the paper is a lot more exciting than
anything else that happens. So when you're starting out, right,
that energy and all the things that begin to happen, they feel
like a lot more is being accomplished in a short amount
of time as opposed to the -
what will eventually of course happen, things slow down
in the time periods that we have, not as much is
accomplished because you're focusing on smaller areas and
polishing so do enjoy this because this is exciting.
Not that the other stuff isn't that exciting, you know, it is
in a different way though. And I have to tell you in a way
that I absolutely hated as a student at the Academy. a student at the Academy was
That was harder - it was harder for me to learn to
complete things than I like to start them off and have a fun
time moving either paint or conte around and that was the
enjoyable parts, like the polish was not. But then I kind of just
got into it and really that is also an exciting time.
But when you're working on a larger - on like at a scale like
the one we're working at you do need to step back so that you
just compare everything to everything else.
You can see the other zygomatic as well as the hair.
Right the hair is in shadow, it's not too distinct from the
background, but we're not
too concerned with that.
I'm okay with
the way that I've sort of placed this,
being maybe a little too active right to taking away from
things we over hatched, but the advantage is that
this is a charcoal after all so you can just
wipe it away. Now the thing that I would like to do is to
possibly figure out what to do with just the value of the head
as well as we can just get a general tonality here.
That's because clearly we need to
allow our highlights
to give our highlights some room. Look at that. That's
for now even maybe that's even too light, just
Just kind of erase them, right, so we're not as concerned with -
we're not as concerned with
kind of isolated highlights and building up towards them slowly.
You find that half tone and you erase those highlights out
of there. You're going to go back into them, but it's just a
faster way to get information.
Okay, that's good. I'm liking what I'm seeing.
Excellent. Okay, so like in terms of the placement of the
head and more or less where it is. I'm okay. We can kind of
just get some of this
a little bit softer and move down to the hands a
How are we on time? Okay, we still have tiny bit of time
before the break. So
let's just make sure this reads, right, the important thing is,
right, to establish this plane of
the chest and the
the collar, the opening of
here actually helps establish this the hard part with hair,
of course is that you still need to imagine where we have
the cylindrical area of the lips of the opening of the
ribcage of the first rib, the way that the neck comes out at
this angle as opposed to like that angle of the
And the interesting part too is that we're working much more
tonally, right? We're not really working constructively
at the moment. And so you can clearly see that the value of
the skin is darker than that of the of the blouse so
you can just find that right now.
So you're finding your half tones, you're finding - but
you're also thinking of the like the value of the color
that you're looking at. We're adding
these elements that are a little bit more complex.
I'm just laying things in.
Get those shadows, but also do find where the
torso ends and the arm begins.
What is necessary here though -
kind of step back squint a lot -
is we need to figure out what some of this tonal placement
over here is right.
that's my timer. So
why don't we
give ourselves a little bit of a break, our model
needs to take a break and at times I will continue working
without the model up there, but
I think at the moment right it's too early. So I don't want
to do anything without kind of comparing to what I'm looking
I'll see you in a few minutes.
into it. We're still quite early but as you can see a lot
in a very short time. So, all right, let's do it.
Excellent. Yeah, so we left off kind of trying to figure out
where the hands are and what's going on there.
So let's get into that.
Yeah, so if you have done a bit of a you have done a bit of a
painting you can see that this this process is a little more
painterly, right, and that is I think -
kind of the idea of charcoal - one second let me get - there we go.
Son't forget your timers because I tend to and then
everyone gets mad at me. So make sure to be on top of that.
that is the idea behind the use of charcoal in artistic
education, right? Because I think that it's kind of the
closest thing that we have to
paint in a way, so you want to get -
so I think in schools that separated the drawing education
from the painting education,
as in you would start out with drawing, do that for a year or
so or more than move on to to painting after that,
charcoal was the perfect medium because I think it minimizes
those issues that arise when you switch from a drawing
medium to a painting one. I mean this switch from graphite
is kind of insane if you think about it because it's just they're not
at all alike. So but even though the the approach in your
head is not the same as you're slowly building things up.
Of course, I'm talking about alla prima painting,
now of course the Academy of Fine Arts in Saint Petersburg
does not -
there's no real issue in that sense because you're
practicing painting and drawing at the same time. There's no -
you don't separate those two.
Now okay, so I did mention a little bit right? We got the
sleeve, right? It's going to show us the elbow, the inner
the bend in the arm. So
that's going to happen. But what we're going to do
is don't be too -specifically it's going to keep
changing. So just mark,
just keep your eye on it.
And remember what's happening, right? You got this sort of
spiral action here in the fold and then a half-lock over
there. So I would you just at the moment I'd say just get it
in place because it's going to change. And kind of get into it
and see how much you need to do there as time goes on. It's not
a detail of that much importance.
Keep your eye on it though. Okay, so let's get some
placement in the hands again. Right? Let's see what we can do
there. I think that's okay,
the most important part of the hand, right, the carpals,
wrist, right, follow the metacarpals and establish the
arc of the
ends of the
metacarpals, everything else, the phalanges, come
afterwards and that's where the you're really composing. Right?
Whereas the other I'm taking them all the way
down to the bottom of the page there it seems, which is good
because this is still a portrait right? So you don't
want to make sure the compisition - you don't want the
head to be all the way up. Want to bring it down closer to the a bring it down closer to the
middle of the page as much as possible because also imagine
and you but you also don't want the distance from the
edge of the page to be equal in terms of like the edge of the
page to the head as the edge of the page of the bottom to the
hands. So just kind of play around with that
a little bit before you commit, right, because the head - let because the head
there it is again - the head is more important than the hands in a
portrait with hands
right? It's not hands with a portrait.
This is an assignment that we get into
kind of earlier on
at the Academy, just a bit of my experiences, I'll share the my experiences. I'll share
them with you. We get into this in painting after we
spent time on the portrait.
And by portrait I mean only the head,
whereas - and this is done in painting. In drawing at this
point you've already moved on to a nude. It's a weird kind of
thing, right? You're kind of a little bit ahead of
the game in drawing you're a little bit ahead of the
assignments you are doing\ in painting and so you spent a while
painting portraits with hands, but they never go away. It's
not like you - and you don't ever sort of complete it and
then you move on to the next assignments. You basically just
keep practicing this all the way until you graduate because
I mean this is
the closest assignment
in the academy to not being an assignment, you know what I
mean, right? It's a portrait with hands. It's something that
you can encounter as an artist much more so than sort of just
that's just about a nude or a head that's just about a head.
This incorporates a little bit more something psychological, a
relationship that the artist has with the model and so on so
forth. Okay, so that's kind of
the rationale I think.
I'm sure people will argue.
I'm just using the eraser to just establish the general
kind of the light and shadows with some of the half tones in
Keep in mind one hand need to be more developed than the other
and that's not that difficult here because one is above the
in that sense one is covered, the other one isn't.
I'm kind of happy with the placement of the hands as I see
them right now. We'll get into that specific stuff later. How
large everything is. I'm going to step off camera a little bit
or - and just to step back as far as I can.
The one thing before we move back into the head and start
to develop this, right,
it's the value of the skin right? It's a darker value
then the blouse and that's important. We're going to
work with that. I think that's interesting. It's
more painterly, less constructive, a tonal approach
initially less constructive. We're going to get instructive
I'm fine with this.
Let's focus our attention on the head. So for
this I'm going to switch to something that has much more in
with which I can have much more control. Right? So I'm going to
take some of these,
like these these charcoal pencils and stuff like that. So.
And let's get to it. Also the stump I'm going to use is going
to be a little bit smaller and more precise.
Let's see what's happening here.
So, you know as always we get a little more specific with our
I've already laid them in a little so this isn't that big
of a deal
but there I am working on the
the supraorbital margin,
taking that all the way down to the corner of the eye to the -
you can really see it. You can see the zygomatic process of
the frontal bone there.
Right? That's the thing. This is a great assignment because
you're practicing multiple multiple things at once. You're
kind of going back to the head, right, because you can never
practice with the head. The portrait is kind of
all this is about.
Chrissy could you yeah, the head was good. Maybe a little
bit how - yes, but could you look at me.
Maybe not that much. A little bit like right here - to live but like right here
excellent. Yeah, and this is only for a moment. Yeah, you
don't need to keep them there. But yeah, so I just at this
point, it's early. I'm not going to work on the eyes. I
just want to give a general idea of the direction of the
gaze at the just the placement. I think this is interesting.
It's not kind of directly at me.
It's just a hint right and that's it. Like okay. You
can relax there. I know it's hard to keep your eyes in
one place, I know,
but I just wanted to have it, right, and then you
just you move on and keep and keep thinking more so about.
kind of sharpen my eraser, right?
You don't just sharpen pencils, you're sharpening erasers too. There
so that you have that sharp edge. I'm focusing much more
now on the orbit of the eyes and all that stuff than I am
anything else. So
not too concerned with the gaze, but maybe it doesn't
hurt to place it at the beginning.
It might change though, so
don't hesitate to change it, excellent. And then just, you
know, the way that I like to work hatching and then keep
getting a little bit softer and hatching again. Just getting
those larger anatomical structures, right the
structures of the skull and the head and all that, while of
course sticking to proportions.
Trying to get as much in there as possible, the zygomatic.
But also you could just really see
kind of outline,
the protrusion of the cheekbone, zygomatic.
Our light's coming from here, right? So
still fairly loose. I'm not being that specific.
And I'm not worried about the the features of the -
I'm not worried about them at all really at the moment. I'm
just hinting at them. I'm more concerned about the larger
structural landmarks that we spoke about. So don't worry so
much about eyes and
placement of the nose exactly, right, just inch closer and
closer, but that's not the idea here right now, right?
Now, of course, I've lost a little bit of some of these
shadows, right? We need that cast shadow on the
the wing of the nostril of the nose and then
the cast shadow
from the nasal labial
And keep in mind, right, that terminator Terminator it.
it's got to be in place.
I'm just reinforcing all this, making sure we can use an
eraser qith sharper edge. I want to get that
in place, get that in place.
We use the eraser as a tool, not to correct the mistakes,
but as a tool to clean and
shape of stuff.
Front plane of the nose, if you do get into the
some of the more specific things you just need to
know how much of it you need.
I tend to snap the pencils. Yeah at the moment,
right, I'm essentially I'm doing the same thing
just on a maybe a smaller scale right now. I'm
not focusing even that much on the general tonality of an
area. I'm just refining maybe some of these -
essentially the shapes of some of these Shadows.
we're thinking of the form but we're still looking at it
in a certain way.
Then you know you look and make the necessary corrections.
And keep stepping away just to get a general idea of what's
Keep moving things around, keep erasing.
Yeah, this requires a bit of concentration.
you still you need to
figure out where things are and yeah, just don't forget to
move. If you're feeling like you've lost you're feeling like you've lost
your place for a bit just get back into that shadow, back into
And then of course, all right, get back to a broader
Right, allow - like even if you see distinctions between areas of
light, of areas that are in a sort of a lot lighter
shadow that's catching more reflected light at this point.
You can minimize it right but as soon as you lose, let's say
the other side of the head you do need to bring it back
because if you're doing something on one side you must be doing
it on the other.
commit to anything just yet.
Everything is still kind of in flux.
All right. Well, that's
our break again.
Let's allow our model to relax for a bit and I'm actually
going to keep
working on this in the meantime. I think
it'll allow me to
simplify a few things, to kind of think more broadly, remember
the larger relationships, not get so caught up in much get caught in caught up in
copying anything. So let's try it.
So right I remember that there's that shadow
that has fallen from the hair onto
her face and
in general though, maybe switching to a vine because I
know that everything up here is a darker value.
Just going to set my timer to
Yeah, and right I remember this. This is helpful, right, at
times you do work without the model so you do not without the model so you do not
right? Here, too.
Just in general, right? This is probably all darker value and
you do have to remember of course that this is going to be
that as a value will be totally fine. The charcoal gives us a
range that's quite intense, right? It gives us a range
that's much wider than the
than the conte and because
this can go pretty much to a black like a pitch-black. We
don't want it that dark, but we can do it if we need it. can it can do it if we need it.
you can do it if we need it.
But the other part about it is that you're working as soon as
you stop -
as soon as you stop copying you're working much more from your
understanding of the form then you are
from what you're seeing in front of you. Now, the one
thing of course here and in general like the amount that
you're observing, the amount that you're copying
in relation to the amount of your constructing and relying
on your understanding
is also always in flux because a portrait has to look
like the person, meaning there are things that
need to be observed proportions
sort of the particulars of the character of the
of the model and all that stuff.
Kind of overdoing that of course is a problem because
then it lacks a certain amount of anatomical structure and all
that stuff which is important to us. But at the same time you
can't entirely rely on just what you're aware of in a human
head because a portrait isn't a portrait unless it, you know,
resembles the model.
I didn't think that actually mattered
strangely enough. In school a lot of them - a lot of the ones
I did in school I didn't really care if they look like
the model. I just cared to construct the head properly and
you learn to construct it, but then you realize that you know,
you've kind of been ignoring
all these interesting things that actually put you into a
dialogue with what you're looking at, like an
understanding and analysis,
stuff like that. So you can't have one without the other
I mean and of course the moment I say it I think well, there's
a lot of art which maybe proves the contrary but that's usually
something a little bit more
on the contemporary side and sort of
interested in something else.
It's about something else. It's not about
capturing the character of a person, making them come alive
canvas or paper.
I often like some of those other things that they're
yeah, that's not what we're concerned with now. But the head
there's a unification they're happening, right, I'm
relying more on just the changes of plane, all of that
Not getting into the features too much because I'm afraid I'll
get, you know, caught up in them without seeing them, but that's
already a problem.
where's my pencil? So yeah,
right something like the hair you can kind of compose without
observing because you want it to look interesting and it's
sometimes it'll fall into an interesting pattern other
times it won't. It's kind of like the sleeve in that sense.
Kind of establishing that harder edge is kind of a fun
time, maybe too sharp actually.
Too sharp for what we're looking at here.
All right, and I've mentioned when we worked in
graphite, right, you can kind of
get a glaze or a wash of graphite on and in a sense you
can do the same thing with
other media. It's a little bit harder, right, because it's
so easy to wipe it away.
let's see if all the stuff that I just invented is
But I think it is. I think I was not so much inventing as I
was just unifying some of the values in the head. So yes, I
think the - turn maybe a little bit more, excellent.
So now we can maybe get into some of the specifics again,
right, now that we have
to look at that's not just in my head.
Right the zygomatic, this is currently the cast shadow from
the hair that's falling out of the zygomatic, but it's
falling perfectly on the zygomatic arch and I almost
feel like exaggerating a based on that. Right? So if you're
surprised by this,
that happens often, right there, might be something that is
totally a coincidence, an accident, a shadow or a half tone
caused by something else entirely,
but it just happens to coincide with anatomy. And so I would
say use it.
Right, the orbit of the eye, we can - this is already the frontal
bone. So we just need to get this
little bit of a darker value there.
Just a little bit of a darker value. All right,
we're still concerned with the head. We're
not moving out of the hands yet. As soon as
everything's in place I
think there's something I mean, okay. So there's a number of
ideas that come to mind on the one hand.
One is that you should kind of develop everything evenly.
So like I should probably stop working on the head and move on
to the hands because the hands are so
incomplete compared to the head.
On the other hand, I do like
taking my time making sure that the main element is almost
completed before moving on because if I do it that way
then I know how far to push the hands so that they are not
competing with the head but are clearly
an element that needs to be emphasized.
If my hands are covered in charcoal so if you see it on my
with these media.
Okay. So now I'm separating them, getting a little bit
more specific. Right now I'm getting a little bit more
specific in terms of just you know core shadow separation
of the core shadow, cast shadow.
Allowing that cast shadow to fall on the upper lip in a way
that defines the forms of the lip.
here I'm going to
work according to principle, right, cast shadow clearly a
There we go.
And then getting
some of these shadows in there, but also the upper lip, right,
the upper lip is not in shadow. It is closer to here
right, as the form begins to turn.
at the corner of the lip
and everything on the left-hand side is not in shadow. Of
course in half tone, but not in shadow.
So we will just need to keep adjusting that until it works.
Of course that little bit of a ridge there on the upper lip
we know is there now. Of course there is
from the part of the lip that is in shadow there is a cast
shadow from the upper part of the lower lip. So you just
follow that along.
Don't worry about where that ends within the shadow.
That's not that important. And then you're moving down to that
sort of front plane of this whole area below the lower lip.
All of it's in shadow and that the chin, cast shadowt
onto the chin then core shadow on the chin itself,
right just step by step as you're moving down.
And then I'm extending it upwards now. Of course I'm
going to have to pull the
form underneath here right around so that we establish
And work just enough in the shadow itself to pinpoint some
areas. I personally think I need to bring down the brow
just a bit. There's a sort of proportional error on my part.
So in terms of where we are now, I think there's some real
development happening in the head. I'm liking what I'm seeing,
but let's get into
finding and bringing out some of the lights.
The orbit of the eye, read some of these highlights as well as
the darker half tones and some of those shadows.
Now currently the
face itself is floating a little bit because I have
not yours Chrissy - here
on the page
it's floating a little bit because I'm not
considering the hair enough. So the hair is a little bit
difficult because it's primarily in light and yet it's
a darker value and we are concerned with the color.
The value of the color rather. That's the idea. Right?
we just need to make sure that we have areas of shadow that
read like shadow a little bit more clearly.
But also we can kind of adapt that constructive approach, you
know, we don't need to over emphasize some of our contrasts
if we get away from
- annoying sound of the medium.
If you hear that squeaking.
Right. We just like even that variable helps, right? I
add a little bit of a background, a darker
value than the hair itself
show that even though this is clearly the darker value than
competing. It's clearly in light and that's falling away
into shadow. I'm going to just extend this a little bit
further with a list of my larger -
I smear with the this thing, it seems to do a good job.
Just extend that off. We're going to play around with some
things in the background
a little bit. So we'll explore, you know, the contrasts there.
Now I do like that shadow on the sternocleidomastoid and
then you can see
the clavicle there.
Really, really, really clear.
You do want to show that there's a skull underneath that
hair. It's not just a
fluffy mass on the page.
And let's extend that out, right, clearly a little too
sharp, but I like that being that, right, you can then kind of
knock it back a little bit so we can see it.
I personally think some of these shadows - I'm just going
to block them in a little bit again, right, so you can kind of
adopt one of those earlier approaches. Like I
mentioned this, you switch. There's the early blocking
in approach and then something else afterwards that maybe
these more about refinement, but you maybe want to
switch from one to the other.
You might adopt a blocking in approach on top of something
that you refined a bit.
We just need to get that into shadows and like just a block
away. Right? I wanted this feeling that the head is coming
out from this general area of
shadow and darkness behind it and primarily
then we really need to
get our values down, correct.
Oh, no. Okay. So there's something with my timer.
So I'm going to set
it - we've been at it for a while so I put it for a short
amount of time. See I forgot to put the timer and then it's
entirely my fault and then everyone gets mad.
Okay, so I actually think for now I'm kind of liking where
the head like is in terms of its development on the page,
right? I just am -
we do need to end the mandible even if it is in shadow. I
think this shadow is exciting. It's sort of dynamic but
we'll figure that out as we go.
I say let's move down to the hands just a little
bit. I think they're okay for now. I'm just going to start
higher, right? I could kind of move down to the hand as I have
them, but I'm not right, this problem of correction,
right. I've laid them in, I sort of think I have the shoulders
right and or at least I did at the time but probably don't and so
you need to go
and make sure that everything is in place again,
right? So you're just -you're always you may make a mark
you may be leave it for a while but then you question it later
on in the process, right? Here
you don't necessarily need to be too specific. Like in
reality this is probably one of our strongest contrasts on
the shoulder, but it's not a necessary contrast.
So we're just going to subdue it a little bit because there's
a lot of stuff in between. Now
just sort of take a vertical from the armpit, always right
the armpit attachment of the arms to the torso.
Mark that point and jump across that point.
Figure out what's going on with the torso, hint at the
shadows on the blouse,
but maybe a little bit more loose with that,
doesn't need to be too specific right now or maybe in general
right? Because if the head is specific and the blouse is
specific and everything and so on and so forth. Everything
its equally accented.
But it's not that fun to look at.
So instead you need to highlight and pick your your
So clearly this seems to me a bit short, right? So
I'm just going to move all of this down
while keeping the hands in place right? I can do that.
Good. Okay, I like that more.
Right now is a good time to keep stepping back. Keep
stepping back, making sure you're I'm getting everything
to my place.
I feel like
all the elbow and all that stuff is off the page, which I
have no problem with.
I think that's actually a little more dynamic.
A good crop, right? I keep talking about the crop. Crop is
what composition's about.
So just keep moving things down a bit. Okay? Okay. Okay. I
think the placement of the arm is not so bad right now. Just
take some proportional measurements, make sure things are
That's the arm. Bring it up to there, right, I'm just comparing. There we go. Okay.
Yeah, that makes sense to me.
Even get the torso, right, a little more of a lean there.
You can get the end of the torso so
overlapped by the sleeve and the upper arm. Good. Good.
Good. Good, good.
But the thing with the hands, hands are not easy, and you want
to make sure you kind of have them in the right place before
you start. The head can go kind of anywhere then you can adapt
to it but now -
or essentially you have multiple accents now, multiple multiple accents now,
right? It's becoming a -
it's not so -
it's not isolated anymore. Like if you started with the like if you started with the
hands, you can place them anywhere essentially almost and
then adapt the rest of the composition.
But as soon as you're working multiple elements, you're
running into some problems because you have to make sure
that they're in the proper relationship to one another,
both in placement and in size.
So take your time and move them around right, the hands
maybe even come down lower. Look at that.
Good, good. I like that. Now
where are we here? Just going to bring this up.
I just want to make sure to knock this back right? I don't watch
the other side of this is all shadows and whatever
the background, right? This is a kind of a tonal exercise. So
this could stay pretty loose right, more or le,ss. You don't
to be too distracting, but it can stay loose and then you
move from there.
Break time? Okay, so
yeah placement-wise I'm okay. Well, let's just work until the
break. We don't have that much time until the break, making
sure the general placement of the hands and arms is right
from my end and then
we can refine these things after the break.
Right, kind of just blocking things in a little bit.
Remember those parts of the
forearm, right? That's the flexor carpi ulnaris.
The upper arm is pronated as is the lower one.
Right it is little bit -step back too far. Sorry everyone.
There's a little bit of a -
there's a little
bit of an interlocking happening there between the
pinkies which is quite fun.
And right, just make sure to get the general placement of the
carpals and the metacarpals.
And remember the other along the contour of the carpals have
their own direction.
Sort of the wrist is its own element.
And then you bring this down.
And so what we have,
right, we have this
very clearly we can see
the head of the
metacarpal of the pinkie.
And a little bit of the of the hypothenar
eminence, right, you could see it on the side as well, the
the muscle right here.
So in a way, I'm just worried about the proportions of the
hand, how things taper. I'm working on elongating it
now, you know if it's a -
and then I'll kind of a adapt and adjust that as we go.
Right, just kind of the same way as I was working up with the
head. I just trying to see what's going on with the
where they are.
I'll refine them as we go, right, the key is that you want to
really pay attention to where the shadows are on the phalanges
to make sure that each of them is kind of going in its
And you know, and oftentimes, you know, you got to go back
and change the hand. The hand I find is challenging not because
it's hand with all that anatomy and stuff but I find it
challenging because it's such an important
compositional element that it's just hard to make it
interesting. You just have to keep changing it,
adapting it, until you have it,
until it works in context.
This is why I'm stepping back a lot again now to get.
Hard shadow behind it then possibly a little bit more
there. I think we're getting closer. We're getting much
Right and even in terms of handling possibly the hand
can get a little bit looser.
Okay, so I actually think - I actually think
take a little bit of a - we can take a bit of a break
because I think we're at the point with the hand that we
were with the head obefore we went back into it and We went back into it and
started to really refine it. So, let's allow
everyone here to take a break and I'll see you in a few.
Thank you, Chrissy.
think I'm kind of like I'm okay with the hand
proportionately, right? Basically, it's got to go from
here all to about like halfway into the brow, into the frontal
bone. So that's -
even if the hand is a little bit large, I'm kind of okay
with it. Yeah.
Okay. So the thing that I was looking at actually, because I
did look at this during the break,
the problem now is, of course, the
the one we've encountered in the sense that all of the
values, the lighter values are the same.
So what needs to happen is to see some variation so I think
I would like to focus our light on the carpals, the wrist, and I
just want to knock back
Just knock everything else away.
Especially down here where I'm doing it now.
All right already that kind of helps because the hand also
this right angle, which was there before, I think we can
soften it so that it's not so prominent as
closer to what we're seeing now.
And a lot of this is shadow, so we need to knock that back and
we see the pinky of the other
in through that gap.
So we need to figure out what that is. That is the middle
phalange, right? There's the joint and this is
the one at the end.
let's just get that as a mark and then you can see a cast
shadow from it onto the ring finger of the upper hand.
Timer on? Good.
Okay, so, okay. I'm liking it. I'm liking what I'm
seeing, right? It's already kind of
like the strong outline, the contrast, they're
really really taking over right now. So we need to kind of like -
but currently the hand is more important than
on the head. We definitely don't want that but I think we
can sort of minimize that
without sort of spending too much time
on it right? It'll happen on its own as we refine stuff.
That's the idea.
Right there we go, moving up to the wrist
and we can see the
ulna right there, you know, anatomical landmark. Take
it across, you can see the radius on the other side.
important bit right there.
And now we pull that wrist back and I think we're getting
somewhere. Now the interesting thing actually, and we'll have
to see how much of this to use right, is that the actual arm of
the chair I think
and yeah, it's got like shape of some sort. We can bring this
Right enough kind to give it a little bit of context, we
can even hint -
we'll figure out what to do with it. Right? It doesn't need
to be so specific. We can hint at the other one too. Right,
perspective up here somewhere is where that one is.
Also help us get a feeling of light. We can just see the
lighter part of that arm of the chair.
But there's a nice shadow being cast onto the other hand. So
we're seeing a very small part of the hand underneath, not a
big deal there. That's I think good.
Right, so here we're really composing. We're really
thinking in shadows and how they are defining the
So but and I'm kind of extending these outlines into
these shadows all around, right? We need a cast shadow from the
arm onto the blouse, cast shadow from the upper arm onto out of from the upper arm onto
the torso right and it's kind of something we do
and reintroduce by minimizing some of these outlines,
we allow them to become a turned edge of form.
all right, just let's start kind of getting into right
That whole area right, the heads of the -
or rather the base of the
metacarpals and then
the two rows of the carpals down there. I mean you can of
course see each individual bone there, but you do want to try
to imagine them as clearly as possible.
See and that's the thing that I was talking about. The
sleeve is now just pulled up a little bit and see the these
things constantly change. So you need to adapt and work with it.
Right if it's a change that you like
you make that change, if it's closer to what you had before,
you prefer what you had before, then you go for it. You
keep it and I'm going to actually kind of keep it and
we'll make some adjustments later. Get that half-lock
up here and spiral underneath it.
This is sort of a drop right here,
also sort of a
and so on. So like for the, you know, for the most part most of
most of the cloth that you're looking at right is the
combination of all of those those
patterns of movement of the folds.
I'm just going to use the side of the eraser to get some large
areas blocked out,
then here too, right, the hand we still need to add that what we still need to add that
that skin tone.
But remember right, that sort of the bulge up there of the
spiraling down the forearm.
And then, right, to reintroduce
some of the lights.
Don't worry about the
veins on the hand just yet, focus on the
structural components, focus on the tendons as they cross over
and wrap around
We'll add the rest, we'll add all those
They're important because they really add sort of a quality of
life, but we can't over overstate them too early
because then we will -
you kind of run out of room a little bit, right?
Okay, okay. Okay, my bad, my bad.
Right and there I go again just commenting on my own progress.
It's part of the game.
Right, like you are engaged in this constant critique with
Constantly critiquing with yourself so
in order to -
you're always asking yourself the questions and then
And usually the question is like is this
what I intended
Okay. Okay. Okay. I'm
more or less okay with where this hand is.
Getting that under there.
the other - what I see of the phalanges down here
I don't know if we need too much of, right, you can see
this information down there.
We need enough of it, like that shadow
on the middle
finger there a little bit on the ring. We definitely need
the ring finger because that's the one that's interlocking.
But we need to make sure looks convincing.
I can - you can probably see that things are slowing down a
little bit right? We're not - it's not as active. We've
working for a bit over an hour.
yeah, it's no it's no, you got to just - this is the time to
kind of calm down, analyze, see where you are.
At this point you can already you realize that you're
spending more time just
thinking about it than you are making marks. Of course as we
progress this just happens more and more.
Okay though, okay.
Think we're all right, of course.
we're still going to need a little bit
kind of just not so much working the hand itself
but working around the hand to get it in that proper context
to, you know, make sure we're looking at it
like we should be, you know, so of course a portrait with hands
can also include
more information than this right? It could be zoomed out a
bit more. So you're getting a little more context but I like
how this one
composes itself if you will because I think it's kind of
it's closing in on
our model in the image and I think I like a
tighter composition because I think it's
more intimate in a way
and that's if a portrait is anything
I kind of always think is it should be rather intimate,
but maybe that's a personal thing. So
okay, so I think let's leave a hand for now. I like where it
is. And let's get back to the head and see if we can really
add some bits of polish. Okay, excellent. Okay, I kind of
would like to see your eyes for just a little bit. But if
they're looking a little bit off to the side, yeah my head -
it's okay. This won't take long.
Yeah, so because
holding one's eyes in one place is uncomfortable. You
have to be quick.
I just have to get in markdown
where things are, right?
Ideally, of course you would work on both eyes at the same
time, but I don't think you have that luxury
excellent and then the other eye, you do try to do both.
Okay. Yes. So
yeah, you can relax the -
but then right in order to get this down you maybe need to
work a little bit from
just the marks you made and memory and that's, you know,
that's where that comes in. It's good practice, hard,
but you know you periodically ask I mean, there are some
people who can hold the gaze in one spot. I am not one of them
and I think they are - I think those are the exceptions to the
So I - but see but this is the thing to do. I just need to
have for like the smaller the information becomes,
the sharper the eraser needs to be
to get into those creases, but at the same time you don't want to
outline the eye, you don't want to over outline the eye, keep
stepping back so that you could still see it in context.
Excellent. And then did you do - other way to do it is of course
the catch the eye in that position every time it happens
to come back to it.
But it is alright though, if you need to
look away, it's totally understandable.
yeah, we'll come back to it, it's no big deal right now. Yeah, I
have enough actually for now.
But I still think the head just a tiny bit higher.
Yeah, I do think there's a little bit of a tilt that way,
exactly. It's very slight but.
Right work to place the eye into the orbit
and keep in mind that it is inside the head don't
make it much lighter, even though you see small bits of
light, you know, that's not common error.
And keep in mind, right, the most important thing is always the
skull underneath. So every time we are -
you know away from that for a while make sure to come back
and reinforce that skull,
Now what's interesting, right, is that we have
this whole area
of the zygomatic process and
just everything is above the of above the
and it has to be a plane that's turned
that way, right, in
and then the light
accentuates that even further.
We're kind of ignoring the eyebrow itself just for a
moment, even though of course we need it,
just hint at it.
small stuff like a crease here and there it just sits, focus on
proportions, larger relationships. We're still at
that point. And in the sense, you're always at that point,
right, those small, tiny details come just at the very end. But
I'm clearly seeing that
we do need to get into some of the anatomy
here on the nose, right? We can see that highlight
nasal bones, on the nasal bones.
And follow that highlight would be to the
highlight here is of prime importance in the nose.
It's going to give you that separation of the front and
adjust those tiny indentations.
I'm going to
show you the
separation between the wing of the nose and the upper upper
of the alar cartilage
the nostril itself as well as the
the alar cartilage
the crura underneath now the ones that wrap here.
At same time I think there's a lot of light here, I think the front
plane of the nose can come down a little bit
kind of get specific.
Couple hatches in there. The problem you might have
is if you're following along in
charcoal is that of course, you know, you have to kind of
sooner than later switch to a charcoal pencil because
there's kind of a - the paper has a capacity.
There's a maximum amount of regular charcoal that it
can accept. But that's our timer.
Let's take a break and
we'll be back in a few and just just keep going.
do a little more on this. So
I'm thinking we continue with the head. It was nice to take a
moment. But then let's see what's happening. Right? I
think it's important now to figure out the other side of
the head. It's kind of there, we established some of these things
that were talking about, the nose.
I'm gonna switch to one of these charcoal pencils, just a little
to allow me to model the lights. I mean I keep
mentioning and I used to be quite against switching and I
even have mentioned that in this course earlier,
but I find that switching
from a soft or hard pencil actually can accomplish a lot
in terms of
modeling. Now on the one hand of course, there's
something educational about trying to do everything with
one pencil with one hardness, but
like it teaches you more control over the medium and
stuff like that, but
to picking the proper tool and I know everyone always is
interested in what in what are the the tools in my hand, but -
and on the one hand, it doesn't really matter but on the other
kind of does. I get it.
the more certain parts become refined,
the harder these angles that were placed early on, the harder
sharper and more disturbing they look in a sense sense. Right? You
want to kind of begin to soften them, to get rid of them,
incorporate them into the rest of the -
like into the same kind of quality of edge that you have
you'll see that it adds an enormous amount to completion, right
it will on its own sort of complete the head, complete the
area that you're working on because it'll just
give it that amount of refinement.
And that's the thing that I was talking about in terms of
in charcoal, you know, you'll end up just removing a lot of
the charcoal that you've already - you would have on
so, of course, you don't remove all of it, but chances are that
in a lot of places you're going to have to
Right here, too. It just lets get into smaller changes of
plane, right the front plane of the lip, that little plane
closer to the occlusion shadow. Get that little bit more at get that little bit more.
Ignoring this cast shadow
for the longest time for some reason, but I'm just going to
get that back, outline it, and come back to an earlier part of
the process a little bit.
Make sure to sort of follow to the end of the other corner of
the mouth make sure it's there.
And use some of the values within
the shadows to make
the necessary elements stand out.
Let's see. Let's keep going. Let's get up here to as you
know one of the most important parts of the head, the
The bridge of the nose often called in
The hard part with some of some of this, right, it kind of outlines,
it kind of cuts into the head of the whole and so we just
need to to introduce little areas of light in other places.
Chrissy could I have you look up but maybe with your eyes - yeah.
Okay, so that's exactly - yeah. It's right here. That's not -
perfect. Yeah, just keep getting back into those eyes
just a little bit but not even the close eye, which is, you
know, I would say probably more important but also the far eye I am
sure we'll get into the second.
Which of course doesn't need to be as as refined.
But it is also the harder one.
And it essentially just does need to be as refined in our
case right now because it's
just in shadow, it's all in shadow.
Right, I do - in
these instances you do kind of find yourself using
a stump maybe a bit more. There's also a highlight in the eye,
which is wonderful. So, you know, don't place that too
early, but maybe now's the time to just hint that, squint, see
how bright it really is. Is it as bright as the
lightest areas up here on the cheek, the more
constructive areas? It isn't. So it's sharp. That's true, but
it's not that bright so don't overstate it. But having it of
course adds that, you know, classic little bit of light and
bit of life as well
to the drawing.
And then, you know, if you feel like maybe you can drag it out
a little more,
get that highlight even lighter then chances are you probably
subdue it soon enough. I already see maybe that's taking
it too far.
A little bit of a light on the lower eyelid as well.
All right, make sure it's all there but also look at the
the light on the, sclera the whites of the eyes, on the side
of the light is clearly lighter than on the other side because
this is the eye is a sphere.
You're also refining the contours making sure it looks like
the eye that you're looking at.
And find the orbit where you can.
Squint and realize that maybe everything is in a darker value
right? Just kind of reinsert it, get
a glaze onto that eye, a wash.
I use those terms interchangeably.
And here, you know, a lot of the work you're doing here is
up close you're standing close to everything.
But you know, it's easy to get carried away with that. So just
do keep stepping back.
I think we can tone down the whole side of the head just a little bit
more, cast it into shadow with it more clearly.
And let's get these outer edges little bit softer so that we
don't have something that just reads very clearly like
outline because we don't want that.
Do try to complete the eyeball and establish
Okay. Yeah, we're good.
That was a lot of time, thank you, that allowed me to
get some work done.
I just get into a couple of these characteristic and
interesting creases that really add a lot of life.
Now, of course, I've been working on the eye and it feels
a little outlined. So just going to try to soften it just
a bit. Just even placing that highlight on the upper lid
until the little bit of a darker tone inserts that eye into
the skull, which is
one of the more important things that you can do.
All right, but still we can see orbit we can see it right
And you want to extend that
a little bit more but you can right kind of get this
Squint not even so much looking at the model but the
drawing itself, squint at your own work so you can see things
a little bit more holistically.
And round off these forms, right, extend those terminators.
Right so you can see the amount of refinement
that's taking place here.
And just keep in mind that all of this other stuff in the
background, we'll come back into that and it won't
be that hard to just make sure it goes from what it is now
kind of loosely
indicated to something a little more precise, a little bit more
Of course, that's always the question, we don't even know
that always is, what completion looks like.
Because it's not about the amount of information
in an area, it's about the relationships.
So, yeah, you can just follow along with the general
direction of the hair in places. The most important thing
in the hair up here was going to be that highlight.
But also, right, extending that darkness behind it, to end it,
right, it's still - and so you begin to
all of these around the head, you can to use it.
Figure out where the end of the skull is and where the end of the
hair is and that's something that keeps changing constantly
on the page, not really at first, but keeps changing constantly on
You get it more precise as you
go along, right?
Especially up top where you want to just sort of follow with the to sort of follow with the
direction of this of the skull, but then
extend that highlight, erase it almost to pure - every erase it almost to Pure
the value of the paper to pure white, but then, you know knock
it back a little.
Might suggest, right,
it just has to look interesting.
So see what's happening there, right?
Here's how you can push the charcoal. Of course, you can
make it as dark as that, but then of course, I like to
not over exaggerate those darker values. I don't think
they're always that
helpful, but there is a little bit, you know a little bit more
Almost as if you're kind of adding a line, but look how
soft that edge the hair is in the back then how sharp
it is up here, and how soft.
it's a matter of -
a matter of composing this environment, right? It's
sort of abstract, but it gives -
if approached correctly, right it just sort of
I'm going to allow your eye to relax after it's looked at,
main areas, the main accents, and focal points.
I think the hair is getting a little bit more
interesting or it's kind of defining things.
Right by using my hand I'm getting a broader handling.
helping there, but then
now we're going to slowly move our way -
step back, this is the time to kind of maybe step out
of frame a little bit,
take a look at everything from afar.
yeah and get back to it, right? We're still going to get back
into the head for sure.
So I do think it's moved along quite a lot, but happy
with where it is,
but I think
right now do keep in mind, right, so I'm not resolving -
like the background is kind of its kept -
I'm simplifying it a little bit here, but
I am -
I do think maybe you know, we don't have too long before we
take a break, actually almost no time at all.
We'll go until the alarm rings and then we
can take a break and come back and get the hands.
And kind of work on the hands to have them on par
with the head because once again they're lagging behind
maybe a bit more than
Alright, so let's take a break and then come back to our
can take them to a level of completion that's close to what
we have going on here at the head right now. Alright, let's
Going to make sure to set that timer, always - perfect. All
yeah, yeah, you can have if you find you have to keep them on
because I'm working on my hands right now. Yeah, so and that's -
yeah, excellent. Yeah, and and also you don't at the
moment you don't need to keep your head in the same position.
It might be easier to relax that way. Yeah, excellent.
Okay hand it is.
So outer contours, of course, right? We're going to go and
refine them, look for the
the changes inside that affect the outside, right? That is what
anatomy is about.
You can see that indentation
right at the radius.
Alright, make sure to carve in. I personally think I made the forarm
maybe a little bit too
wide. So I'm just going to carve in as I get a little bit
more specific with it.
I'm using the pencil here and I know I usually say hold it as
far back as possible, but
when you're working on
certain areas it's kind of helpful to get a little more
control by holding it close to the lead or in this
charcoal, whatever. It's not lead.
that's the hard, one medium one, perfect. Yeah, so just
start by, you know, the classic reinforcement of shadows,
don't hesitate to carve. Right? Even if you run the risk
of making things a little bit too light underneath
Here you can actually follow along with the
ulna, you can see the ulna and the extensor
Now and you can see the
flexor carpi ulnaris underneath there right because -
you can see it because of the pronation.
Excellent. Take it all the way back like here is where we
pretty much have the the tangent of the head of the arm
the chair. Right? So you want to always accent that a little
bit more than you think you should so
now we don't want to over over model the forearms is over model. The forearms is
because there are wonderful highlights and they'll
probably give us all the information that we need
because all of our information needs to be at the wrist and
the hand itself.
kind of move your way up that highlight, use the eraser to
figure it out
and sort of see how wide that highlight is, how soft or how
hard that highlight is mainly to give you the
necessary character of the form, right? Everything
here is sort of rounder as you move up towards the actual,
the larger part of the extensor muscles of the forearm, the
So there's that hand, the
arm rather. Sorry, sorry, sorry. Yeah, and then
we move to the sleeve, right, into the sleeve. I think
kind of wrap it around a little bit.
Begin to hint at some of those.
Don't necessarily copy them, right if you see that's
the advantage of having some idea of what the -
what the cloth is and what it really like if you simplify it
into just a type of structure as if you know that this is
sort of a spiral and you know what a spiral fold looks like
you can just make it look like a spiral fold without it being
necessarily the particular spiral fold you're looking at,
look convincing enough or this half-lock
coming off of that spiral, right? The main idea is the
cloth is continuous.
so you don't want to -
it's one type of fold becoming another. Now here we have another,
now of course the hard part here is really the amount of
development that you need here.
getting a tiny bit carried away with that sleeve, but why not?
you need that sleeve to show that that is the elbow.
The sleeve itself you can see it's a type of fabric, right, is it's a type of fabric right
when it's bunched up it becomes more opaque and I would
imagine that's the case with pretty much all fabric
but everything above it, right, is not bunched up. So you see
like it's just the fabric under the arm underneath so it's not -
so it's more transparent and thus a darker value.
So we do want a softness, right, so these outlines are a
little bit too much. So we need to get - try to show them a
little bit more with just
value in general. This is too close to the
to the edge so you don't need to worry.
You don't need to overstate things.
You can see right here, right? It's already beginning -you can
it's probably off the page where I am, but you kind of
show the movement towards the elbow, the olecranon,
and the lateral epicondyle.
Okay, okay. Okay. I'm liking what I'm seeing here.
Forearm, the sleeve is beginning to look convincing enough. All
right, but the fabric is white. So clearly the cast shadows
here, maybe a darker value, the background may be coming
through here and there it's gonna be a darker value
and that will kind of show all that reflection into the
on the sleeve.
All right, we don't need to over
model anything here, right, just kind of
refine it but be very attentive. It's kind of -
watch out for
even accidentally you might be sort of
kind of giving more emphasis to something that may not need it.
that is what I'm doing at the moment.
Little bit, but it is a nice little part.
Okay, so I'm going to leave - I'm going to leave that for now and
just get a general tone here, right, this
plane of the chest is obviously
an upturned plane catching more light,
whereas everything underneath
is going to be
a plane that that sort of just
not as a perpendicular angle to the source of light so it's
going to be a darker value.
But we don't need to overstate this, as you know, that's not
the goal here. Okay. So let's get back to the
down here. Right? So we got the four arm looking okay.
spend some time. You can really see the ulna.
We're always starting at the top and you can see the radius.
But then we're continuing down the carpal bones
all the way to the end of the base
of sort of each of
See so there is going to be a little bit of a light in this
area and the softness is what I'm looking for really.
But once again ignore the veins for now.
Though they are lovely.
But if you don't get the structure underneath
then the veins will look misplaced and simply copied.
Not what we need.
Okay, excellent. We're getting somewhere.
Right here. Clearly,
let's get these shadows
head of the
And in general, it's not that bright. You can really see the
coming from up here from the extensor
coming down and
Right, spend time on that. Make that work.
But then maybe here to not just outline each one we can -
you can see that there's this highlight across
metacarpals of the ring and the pinky fingers..
That looks convincing enough. Then we're definitely more than
All this other stuff isn't that important.
extend that up just a little bit.
So what needs to happen though is that we lock in the hand
side here, right? What is it and by that I mean just we need to
get a resolved contour, right? Because the resolved contours
an important part of completion.
just going to need to get
down here in order to see them a little better and also be
what I'm looking at
on the page.
Now at home, of course,
if you're working as large, you can move the
the paper on the easel.
And that shattered, let's switch.
Isn't that a terrible sound when the pencil just snaps as it
And probably everything inside also
is now unusable, but I'll try.
But now let's get that, the pinky from
I mean we can hint at the nail a little bit.
And it's a cylindrical
structure so we're just going to get -
a reminder for everyone to move around and get
the blood flow
moving again and your body can get that.
And then here, right, I'm okay with leaving this hand maybe
not as -
maybe even just more in line. I'm kind of giving it a
quality of something a little bit less complete maybe.
It won't actually take that much, right, you find your
highlights you find your
mid-tone and probably more than halfway there.
Okay, okay. Okay. I think just a little bit of a reinforcement
of some of these shadows.
And you know, they're going to keep moving and
changing so keep your eye out for them.
At the same time
it'd be nice to just knock all this away.
And we don't need to worry too much about the other arm.
there but not there.
that there's a little bit of quality of the vignette,
right? I have the corners
are just the white paper.
So you want to
probably want to extend this upwards and then, you know, you
can carve into places, but just don't make it
obvious that you're just working around the
elements on the page, the important ones. You're
considering the whole page.
And even if you aren't always come back and reconsider it
Let's get that other shoulder, that helps tremendously.
That once again makes this shadow read a little bit more
transparent. Which is good. I do like a bit of light on the
sleeve on the other side.
And that's a break. Let's take a break
we'll still keep working on that hand.
spend some time with that hand again.
Now, maybe let's put in
let's put in some of the really exciting details on the hand
like the veins.
I haven't spoken to you guys in a while, but I've just
been so kind of caught up - as in spoken directly. I have been
speaking the whole time but
just I've just been so caught up with the
everything going on on the paper.
okay. Okay, cool. Alright, there's a little bit of a turn
right now that I'm seeing in the -
I'll get down here. There's a little bit of a turn that I'm
seeing down here after the
of the metacarpals
I might have just omitted it before maybe I just didn't see
maybe the tilt was just slightly different and it
didn't show up as obviously but you know,
it's there now and it's helping
so we're going to use it.
Right the thing about the hands is that you can essentially
spend as much time on them as the head.
intricate, but also
equally as expressive.
We talk with our hands often. I definitely do. You've seen me
talk with my hands.
Hmm. You can see everything there falls back into shadow.
We don't need to over emphasize it.
But then we have core shadows on each of the phalanges, right,
becoming cast shadows on each of the other
phalanges, if you can just see that happening.
Really places them
in space and in the proper relationship to one another.
Right, you can push the values here too because this is an
accent, clearly an accent, one of the more important ones.
Mmm. Okay. Good. Good. Good. Excellent. I'm liking what I'm
There we go, complimenting myself again. Well, if I'm not
going to do it then who is, right? start.
Some more of those cast shadows,
allowing us to see the -
let's get that covered. Right? You don't need the whole - you
don't need all of it. You don't need the entire hand from start
to finish. We don't need - you don't really need the
whole head from start to finish just to hint in the right place
and it reads like the whole head. It reads like the whole
We're always interested in what's kind of the maximum that
we can express with the smallest amount of
Right like economy of means,
when it comes to the creation of
almost anything artistic, I think.
Hinting at that nail. I'm still curious. I don't know how
much to really
really put there.
I do think though that some of like this cast shadow from the -
see it just, it clearly showed introduces that bit of a
space underneath the
Let's be a little bit sharper with our cast shadows. Good
see I'm already beginning to feel like something is coming
closer to the finish.
Okay, so you can see
this right here, right? You can see the
vein moving all down from
the forearm and onto the back of the hand. Right so you start by
darker side, right, the shadow side.
And then with an eraser
begin to pull out by the highlight that you see on that
change of plane or just in general the lighter side.
In some instances like here tone down around that lighter
side to create the flat plane, right, this is all - as it is all
right you don't want to overstate it by any means because
otherwise it'll take over the anatomy, but take over the
structure of the hand and then all you have is a vein. you all you have is a vein.
You don't need that.
Yeah, there's an enormous amount of character and them
they tell a whole
story as well, until you want to
make sure you're a part of that
and not simply copying what you're seeing.
Because if there's one thing
that you can get from my course is that copying is definitely not
what this is about.
thinking about it in a certain way.
And then in some places you can show the van as actually having
a little bit of a shadow. It's mostly it's a darker half
Show with a light.
Of course if there's one here I wouldn't emphasize it to that
extent. You just hint.
Yeah, I don't know. I don't know how much of that we need.
Seems expressive, that's good.
Clean up this edge of the - just right with that edge is
Needs to be properly stated.
Right we get that - we can just add a little bit of information on
clothing itself so we can get the blouse to have a
little bit of character
snd yet of course not be the
center of attention. The hair actually has moved a little
bit. I'm okay with it because we can keep it for now. I mean,
we'll have to bring it back up afterwards but not now
because it exposes the the pit of the neck snf the sternal notch.
So we can get that in place and make it.
Get our pencil out.
All right, so we can focus on
the clavicle right here.
Right. The neck does catch light and of course, we don't
see as much of this before but I'm liking that we can see more
of it now.
Just going to keep cutting this eraser.
Introducing a little bit of a highlight.
Sternal notch, right, one of the more important anatomical
Not to be over looked.
Gonna move up, kind of enhance that shadow on the head right
Okay, I like what I'm seeing, I do think that you can see the
shadow being cast from one hand onto the other. Use that to
the question is how do we kind of unify some of these things
right in general? I feel like just placing some sort of a
value but also a texture
onto the blouse can help
push it back into space, not attract too much attention.
And yet also make it a little more interesting.
So it's not just the white of the paper.
I would like to figure out what the other shoulder is doing.
Use the eraser
to establish maybe some hints of
highlight or the opening of the collar. They opening in the caller the
Be a little bit more precise with that cast shadow that
falls from one side onto the other.
I don't know. Yeah.
Question is always how much do question is? Always how much do
you really need of anything.
Extend the arm. See so now I'm sort of I'm leaving some of the -
some of the
specifics, right, the hand, head, even the sleeves. I'm just kind
over all what's happening. I'm trying to recompose. Jim. I'm trying to recompose.
It's kind of see if I - if somebody were to tell me to
complete this right now
this is how I'm thinking about it, right? I'm sort of
I'm trying to add a contrast in certain places where I think I
need it but to just enhance things and push other things
I am -
it's more of a-
I'm composing a bit more than I'm refining at the moment.
We will get back to the hand. We will get
back into the head
after the break
but in the
meantime, let's see what we can still do with the arm and the
sleeve. Not that this light of the sleeve in the back here
demands that much attention.
As long as you make sure it wraps around the arm, right,
so it hints at the arm.
I wouldn't do much more than that.
Right because the hands are close you want -
I mean in general you want one to be more developed than the other
on the page. But because it's close might need to enhance
that even more, right, one needs to be - one needs to stand out
than the other.
And yet it's just a reed like a hand.
See, so if you remember how I started, this very active moving
around a lot,
kind of thinking about large things in the drawing,
and then it slowed down a bit in the refinement stage.
I'm going to get back to some of this refinement, but right,
now you can see that it's much more active. It's more about
large relationships again, and this requires you to kind of
move around a little bit more, kind of to take a look at the
So I'm just sort of creating that atmosphere. Clearly this
a little bit lighter than it needs to be because it's
competing with the head right? You just want to set that
background back into space just a bit more so that the head
But it's that - it's the head and those.
Now maybe I feel like I've actually slightly overstated
the wrist and come back and bring that line in just the
at a certain point though, you realize that all these tiny
little changes you're making don't actually make a
They make a difference to you, that's important, but I don't
think they make a difference for the audience
of your work. I mean
the viewer of your work.
Don't wanna lose that shadow.
Squint, right, and get rid of that a little bit.
Gonna kind of extend this to the corner. The edges there's a
little bit of a light underneath but we don't need
it. We just block that out.
Okay. Yeah, and we're back to it.
That's the sound of the break. that's the sound of the break.
Let's take a break
get a little bit more refinement in the head and see
if we're - and see how close we are
to completing this portrait. I think we're pretty close. I
think I'm pretty close. I'll see you soon.
inverse has happened. It used to be that the head was more
developed than the hands. We switched, developed hands and
now we've lost the head a little bit. So now we need to
even these things out again. That's just part of the
process. Let's do it.
Up close I like what I'm seeing actually.
From afar I think the head is lost a little bit, it falls into
If you can - yeah, exactly.
So we just need to enhance some things. Like these
outlines in the hand, some of these -
some of these strong cast shadows. That's all really
working for me. But the head is little lost. Let me just -let me
just sharpen this
pencil for a second.
Get a nice sharp eraser.
And get into it.
There's also a tiny bit of a - feel likeI can move the
bridge of the nose in.
That's what happens.
Let's sharpen that again.
Just a second. This is faster than you doing it by hand though.
See that's what happened when it fell and fell and that's the
end of it. So
don't let your your pencils hit the ground if you can, my
All right. So let's start with the closer - a closer
of the head, the terminators, right? And you see as soon as
we enhance them and enhance that core shadow, the reflected light
will all feel so much lighter.
All feel so much much lighter and
now we have that room. And by room I mean
tonal room to push these values.
Right the hard part here is what to do with this, right?
By removing a little bit of a darker value there we're
actually unifying kind of extending these shadows.
Kind of connecting the shadows in the head with the the darks of
So that's an important thing to do. We'll see how it works.
This is something that I personally can't really see
here from up front.
I need to step back for it.
Right the real thing, the real deal here: where to
push the background the darker value than the shadows on the
face and where to invert that, keep it like we have it there.
Right now some unification, right, combining
the foreground with the background and yet
making the foreground
stand out with contrast. is what I'm doing. Maybe I'm going to be doing maybe
kind of go over that outline, that contour.
See where you can get overlaps. At times maybe just ignoring
those overlaps. Maybe just it just needs to be a line.
Here too a little bit softer,
right, here a hatch becomes a little bit more than just a
hatch becomes an imitation
of the direction of the hair and the hair itself.
All right, just
hatching over all this.
Depends on the amount of information you want on the
interested in it being a suggestion of hair more than
That sort of a preference.
On your end I think a little bit more.
And up here just push this dark, push this dark, push this dark
head and then
right, allow the background to
engulf these areas with more, right, like but the key is how
you need to find the darkest values you have in the
hand. Let's see where we can place them
in the head.
Or the hard part, right, if you lean on this, you end up
removing a large portion of it. So
watch out for that.
kind of get caught up in some of these things. I
realizedI'm not explaining what I'm doing, but
it's kind of just a
just continuing with what I was talking about before.
Just refining and making sure to increase the contrast is
pretty much what I'm doing now.
And then putting in a couple of significant details.
Clearly that's way too light.
The other eye also.
Just the eyes in general now, you can push the
values and get some sharper edges there
especially on the cast shadows and the occlusion shadows.
highlight, right, we can lift some of the lights on the side
plane of the nose.
If you make sure that -right I'm kind of going over
everything is already here. Maybe getting a little bit more
specific here and there but
primarily it's just
a matter of
detail and contrasts.
And small areas of light too, like right there, right?
Okay. Okay. Might need to step back off, I'm out of frame.
Take a look a little bit from afar. I'm liking it more smf the
head is definitely coming out from the background while
we're still -
right, squint a lot. Like this is easy to accomplish if
you take something that's just as that pitch black in tone
in the background, but we don't - we want to have
a little bit of that atmosphere.
So we have to be careful.
Keep squinting, keep stepping back.
Yes by darkening those shadows, the lights of course seem
lights, carve out lights, carve out lights. Lights
I'm liking what I'm seeing in the hair, too. It's good.
And now it's hard, right? Because if there's something
that you think is going all right, you're moving
in the right direction, be careful, especially with with
the charcoal which is so easy to kind of undo everything that
you've done up to this point. You want to be very careful.
So that's the -
yeah, maybe some more hints at the hair. I'm thinking of
getting the vine out again. And just now of course, this is
going to have to be - you have to use a fixative of some kind
on this right because otherwise As
you can't even carry this from you can't even carry this from
one place to another without
removing most of the charcoal.
Refine that. Now
I'm going to see if I have some compressed, right, a little bit
of compressed charcoal here
all right, it's not - it's sort of -
this will do, right, it would just add that bit
Right just get that to be a little bit of a darker value, but be
careful. Like you don't want to introduce a new darker value
into the structure that you already have.
If you're planning on completing this, right? If
your plan is just to then find what that darker value is and
then revamping everything
that's one thing. But we are still kind of aiming to
which means be careful when you introduce a large, in a sense,
structural change to the
the tonality of the drawing.
Yeah, that was maybe a little bit too dark. So I'm going to
find a piece of compressed charcoal after the break and
see if it does me any good. Might not. might not.
Might not and
maybe I won't even look for it now that I think about it. I'm
kind of okay with what I'm
Once again kind of looking over the whole piece,
working the whole while you, know, not forgetting that
we do need to focus on.
It's almost imperceptible, right, we almost can't see and then
I kind of integrate some of this item, getting the pupil a
darker value, right, just ever so slightly. It's hardly
Just to push those values.
I'm enhancing of course some of these cast - some of like the
cast shadow onto the chin there.
I made it a little bit stronger than it is in real life.
That light is strong here on the zygomatic arch, which is
great. It's rarely here unless the light of course if
from the side. So we're going to use that
to model the cheek.
not too interested in overstating it as long as it
reads. It is entirely in shadow.
Here we're getting...
Just gonna push some of these darks in the eyes.
Orbits. And of course once I do this
that bit of light, color, stands out more than it needs to so
push that back.
Hmm. This is that part of the process right? It's just back
and forth, push and pull, questioning everything.
It's kind of the most enjoyable part, but also
kind of the most miserable part of this whole thing.
But I don't hate this.
I think I mentioned that at one point that I do know that I'm
close to completing something when I hate it, that usually
means that I
I feel like I can't do anything else and I'm frustrated about
that. However here I'm okay. I'm good. Maybe that just means
I'm not finished yet.
Or this is a rare exception to the rule.
Right kind of turning the eye there, excellent.
I'm getting some of these small, minute, rather important
forms that really
add to the humanity. All right
closer to our goal and we got to take yet another break. So
we're good. Let's -
I'm going to -
take a break of course, yes. I'm going to keep working on this
on the break. So
you guys follow along.
Set that timer.
Yeah, I'm just going to work
a little bit more the I kind of unifying things, right we're moving.
I may have made some outlines, but now I want to remove those
All this in erasing,
I'm losing the sharpness of my eraser. So I just have to keep
keep trying to get the most
out of those important elements. The things that
you've decided are important. We've decided the eye of course, I
mean we've decided that the eye
The window to the soul or whatever.
I think that's a
kind of a bit grand.
It might be the window to the soul, but I definitely don't
think it's the most important element for capturing
the character of a model, for example, I think all that is
closer to the mouth,
forms of the lips, and things like that I think are
there are sort of
able to express a quality and
a character, right, to really capture a person. I don't think
you do it with the eyes. But then again I actually also
think it's personal, it's what it is for you. Not as an artist
but as a person, like what you're
looking at, how you identify
these things and just your interlocutors.
Or you know acquaintances and friends.
it's definitely getting there.
Got hands, we got the head.
It's a portrait with hands after all.
And highlighting the eye, right, I think it's as light
as it really needs to be. It could be lighter, but I it could be lighter, but I did
then I think it'll sort of stand out too much and we'll
lose the the general form of the eye, so do keep an eye out.
Once again. Pardon the phrase, the pun. It wasn't intended.
thinking about that highlight in the eye, don't overstate
What does help sometimes, right, if you take a photograph as if you take a photograph
just look at it, right, just it makes things
You're able to see things a little more clearly,
just a change in value. So it's kind of the equivalent of
turning something upside down or
using a reflective -
something reflective. It's not always a mirror,
sort of invert what you're looking at, right, so that you
can see the mistakes more clearly.
But we all have our iPhones.
Or whichever smartphone you have. Certain for the most part,
I'm certain it's a smartphone so
you can use that to take a photo.
If you don't happen to have one though, then
you can of course use a more traditional approach by using a
to make things smaller actually the other side of
binoculars. Not looking at them to enlarge a thing but invert
them to make things smaller. That helps to -
that's especially helpful if you're working on a larger
Simply to see it small but the real answer to this question is
that pretty much your iPhone can do it all for you.
As I squint I do see that there is atmosphere. There
is definitely room. There's space here and I
and now I have to be actually be kind of very careful where
I place my hand, right, and removing stuff.
So that was the sound of the break.
let's keep at it.
I'll set the another timer for 20. Let's see where we can go
This is the hardest part, right, the the hardest part right the
amount of completion, how much you need, but I think it's
on its way.
And keep in mind we're probably going to keep -
we're going to keep the background relatively loose,
just need to have our attention
in the right spot.
Kind of end that, keep squinting,
Unify some things,
Reinforce some of these things that we discussed earlier
like these shadows to create that atmosphere, maybe
even kind of once again a wash, right, a glazed over some of
skin tone for lack of a better word.
Right and we get a value down there so we can get that
There's a lot of charcoal in the air, I'm certain I'm inhaling
most of it.
Just knock that back back. Yeah now is the time when you're
More precise with some
I think we're close. Let's get this shadow under the
eyelid there a little bit more
precisely in place.
but hinting at hair.
I feel like this glare actually needs to come in down value.
That helped a lot. That helped a lot, just way too
bright and it's always a confusing area because there
always appears much brighter because of the color and
because of the translucency of this glare.
But now just...
Right. Make sure these overlaps on the other eye socket make
See so the interesting part here is that I'm a little
hesitant, I don't like drawing pitch black. So even
though I'm using a medium, that is black, if you really think
about it's kind of just a dark grey. It's not that black
I tend to think that when these things are a little bit too
heavy, I'm not the biggest the biggest fan of contrast in both
paintings and in drawings. And by contrast I mean that sort of
in the way that we all understand it, right, is just the
intensity of how light are the lights are in relation to how
dark our darks are, so this - it's not in any principle of not in any principle of
contrast, because we're always thinking of the contrast there's no
but I think I like something that's keyed a little
higher in general
or just a little bit closer on the scale.
So I'm more concerned with that. I think it's more
as an image. I think it's also
more unified and respects the
plane of the canvas. So the plane of the paper. It's not
trying to create a hole in the paper, it's creating an
illusion but only up to a point, right? It creates
enough of an illusion for us, to
believe it but then takes us out of it immediately because
we are clearly aware that this is not in fact a person but it
is a drawing or painting or just some sort of a creation.
But I'm not
a game in which I confuse you.
I'm more concerned with
the possibility to
allow you to see my own personal interpretation of
what's in front of me. And this is not - and this of course
entails you being aware of the fact that I'm the creator of
I do think
that maybe I went a little bit too light on that.
Information on the sternocleidomastoid there. It's
a little too light but then here
why not get a light in
some of these places and then
some details of the blouse, of the buttons on it.
I don't need them to be
specific, they can be kind of just be hinted at.
By no means should they take away from the -
okay. Okay, I'm liking I'm liking in general where this is.
I know I've said that many times, but you know, it just
moves closer and closer. And so every time, evaluating,
Probably just hint at the hair there with the line for now.
Yeah, this is right. The moment is right. It's just more about
than making any marks. We're which means we're
closer to the end than
I even thought a moment ago.
It might change in a minute and I think maybe we're right at
the beginning, who knows?
That's kind of the best part about this right? There's a
procedure that sort of moves you along, it guides you but
it's not -
these aren't hardened hard-and-fast rules.
Get some bit of fabric and
it falls from the anchor point there.
Interestingly enough - no that'll be too dark. I think
we can kind of hint at the end of the form there, the end of
Right just enough. It's hardly noticeable, but I think it makes a
Just going to step back just a little bit further.
All right. All right.
Let's get some more intricate elements to the structure of
the lower lip.
Let's keep going
with this shadow under the chin. You know, it's hard to
comment a little bit on what I'm doing now. It's
a little bit because it's all over the place.
You know, why not, why not add too close to the edge to matter
that much but
you know why not add just a little bit
of this stuff right?
I think this front plane
might actually need to come down a little to show how the side plane of
the face catches light with the side plane of the nose catches
let's do what we can up until the break and then I think we
just take a look at it for as long as we need for the last
20. I think after this
break is up we do 20 more
and that'll be
all we need to really
complete this portrait.
And it's not so much that it's going to change anything. It's
just I feel like it'd be nice to have that -
to have some time away and then come back and
make those marks that,
you know, the final marks.
We can just even this out a little bit. It doesn't need to
be so specific.
Keep stepping back. Clearly the head is standing
out from the background, which is great.
I'm not even sure we'll need the entire 20 though I must
say but it's nice to think and know that we have
it, right? Now, of course, there are plenty of examples of artists
who had to have their paintings and stuff taken away from them
because they just couldn't stop and that's when they
stopped, when they couldn't keep going.
And I have never really been one of those but I think I'm becoming one
I've kind of been tinkering with this thing for
And then you know kind of
extend these highlights in the hair, but subdue them, right? If
you think of Hals, Franz
Dutch portrait painter, the other
who's kind of like this the alla prima Rembrandt. That's
you know, ish.
You could notice in the highlights in the hair he's
always making them a darker like a darker value than they
probably had been, then he probably observed them.
Right to keep the unity of the hair
and that's something to think about.
Subdue the -
he did it in painting, but you know,
we can do it in both.
Unifying the hair with a background in places,
carving stuff out with an eraser. You know, this is the
Maybe that's a little excessive.
Right I'm almost like placing this as a shadow as if there's
in the back there. I just kind of just I think it helps to
give this a feeling of light and possibly some sort of
atmosphere in relation to some of the darker parts in the
bottom, right, always find as much variation as you can
between the corners both of the canvas and of the background.
I use the word canvas, I'm sorry, but I mean the paper.
All right so this should be a bit lighter than this perhaps
than this more or less even though it gets a bit
lighter and then a bit darker and then it's
dark on that side.
I think that this
highlight should be subdued.
And this highlight should be subdued.
I need a break. So let's take a little bit earlier and just
need to not look at what's happening here so that I can
come back and
see what else needs to be done before we call it a
I'll see you in a minute. see you in a minute.
let's see what we can do to
put our finishing touches on this piece.
Let's go for it.
where's that pencil? There we go.
And I know I said that we might need the full - we might need the
the full 20,
but I'm not so sure. So I'll set the timer for 20,
if we decide
to end early we'll end early.
So just going to go back over and reinforce some things.
Right already a pencil that's just a tiny bit of darker
value than what I have been using, right. So
just going over all those same terminators,
Right, just getting
right just those
Don't forget to
move it around a little bit if it's
some of it stands out too much.
Right just extend these shadows.
One or two occlusion shadows that pitch black. Now's
not the time to hesitate about them. But at the same time
do keep in mind what you've been trying to do this whole
make any drastic changes at this point, right, because
it's because, you know, this is, I mean,
this is close to the end.
The interesting thing is, right, because you can keep working on
it forever. And what's -
I think in some instances that can be helpful, right? You just
have to take it as far as you can go and
if there's something for like almost like an outside
occurrence like an event that's going to -
that will allow you to complete the piece.
On the other hand
in terms of education I think it's nice to move along. Right?
So even if at some point in these courses, you know, and
in my course specifically you've been doing a
particular assignment for a very long time and it's
improving but you don't think it's up to par yet in order to
move on, like it's on par with what needs to happen in order to move
I recommend you just move on.
And then afterwards
come back to the original assignment in a while and try
it again, you know, it takes a bit of time and often
some sort of passive almost passive practice if you will to
to really internalize a concept.
can be quite helpful.
Right those sharp edges of the cast shadows.
Defining the form
of the elements that they are cast upon.
Right? Adding some of these lines. I'm not going back into
the hand. I think the hand is
where it needs to be. Maybe it was just almost like that wash
on top of that.
A little bit of light. But that's not a big deal.
I don't know if that's unnecessary detail, but I'm
going to hint
at the arm of that armchair. I spoke about it way earlier on
but who knows, maybe that's
a good thing. We'll see.
I think it's good. I don't think we even need any more than don't even need any more than
just casting a shadow on effect, but casting a shadow on
it from the arm is going to plant the arm and really
establish that bit of weight and we need that.
Okay, okay. Okay. Okay. So I like what's happening
and just going to get into maybe some of these little cast
shadows in the sternal notch. Why not?
Always a good thing right? Maybe even get that one from
the hair even sharper as it falls on to the zygomatic arch.
You can tone down in front of it because that's probably not
that bright. You don't need that contrast, just need that
That's the effect that we're after,
yeah a couple of
hints of a darker value here and there.
Yeah hands are looking good.
So this has been a portrait with hands and you can
see it's the kind of the idea behind it is not so much simply
to learn to execute hands, it's more about just
proportions, about composing, about emphasis and accent. It's
a few things that are just a bit more -
have to do more with kind of
concepts about art itself and not exclusively about
kind of really - once again and always re-evaluate the
Reevaluate the background.
Make sure the
head has enough contrast to stand out against the
background itself, has enough variation and yet is
unified enough against the foreground.
little accents here and there.
I'll drop that shadow.
And just here maybe just as a line hint
end of the form, right, the end of the - like so you can find where
a pelvis is even if it's just - if it's you know, you're not
really defining it, but you need it to exist in space. Here
too move a little bit of something of the kind.
These thing's right now, just unify.
Right? Back of the head can be a darker value than get darker value then.
what's up front.
So I actually here would invert the value that I would get a
darker value on the head than the background.
Creating a little bit more atmosphere. I think it's minor
right, it's not to compete with the face, but
here we invert. Here it's a darker value against
the lighter hair. There's the darker hair against the lighter
background, right? So you kind of switch things up,
switch the contrast, invert the contrast along the contour.
I think we're good.
So Chrissy I really appreciate all this, this couldn't
have been easy. So
thank you very much.
that was the end of - this is the end rather of the assignment a
portrait with hands. As I mentioned earlier this is one
of my favorite assignments from school because I think it
takes you a little bit past an academic exercise, so it's
about more than that. It's about the psychology of
the model. It's about
getting character, not simply by figuring out angles and
but telling some kind of a story with just the gesture of
the head in relation to the gesture of the hands and the
placement on the page itself. So there, as you saw, this is
a challenging assignment, but I think it's
an excellent one and it moves directly into and it moves directly into
commissioned portraits and your own artistic
you know concepts and ideas. It's not simply an assignment.
It has that bit of art already in it. So I
hope you enjoyed that and
I'll see you on the
Free to try
1. Lesson Overview1m 22sNow playing...
1. Drawing the Portrait in the Russian Style47sNow playing...
Watch the whole lesson with a subscription
2. Blocking in the Portrait With Hands21m 13s
3. Constructing Facial Features26m 39s
4. Specifics of the Face23m 42s
5. Fleshing out the Hands22m 32s
6. Depicting Form in the Face19m 59s
7. Specifics of the Hands20m 43s
8. Specifics of the Hands pt 221m 28s
9. Refinement of the Head26m 36s
10. Design & Unification18m 40s
11. Final Thoughts & Conclusion13m 18s