Wednesday, December 4, 2013


In just 4 weeks of Natasha's drawing class, we've gone from shapes (square, rectangle, oval, varied) to self-portraits!  

Portraits and figures are what I want to do.  I've had some experience with both, but I sure do need a lot more practice practice practice.

Here's what I came up with.  

First one, from a photo and just a quick sketch that wasn't going well so I gave it up and started over.  Sweetie said, That doesn't look like you - you've made your face too round.

Second one, looking at myself in a mirror under a side light in the livingroom while sitting on the sofa - ugh!  I HOPE I don't look that bad!  Or maybe I do, since I'm still fighting a cough and tiredness that won't go away.  YUCK!  

I decided that, at my age, that I don't want to spend hours looking at myself in the mirror to draw a self-portrait - so I went back to a nice photo of me and set it up like a model in front of me.

So, third time, photo in front of me, measuring, starting out with my head in a box.  Measuring.  Measuring.  Measuring.  The drawing is 1 1/2 times the photo size.  And still much more to fix.

Sorry this one is blurred - hard to get newsprint to photo well.  And I don't have a moustache - that's just the beginnings of trying to shade.  I let this one sit a while, walked back into the room and saw that the distance between my nose and mouth is not right.  

More measuring needed.  More changes needed.  I imagine portrait artists who are trying to get a good likeness spend a lot of time on a portrait, whether it's in graphite, charcoal, or paint.  But I feel like I have more aptitude for faces than I do for boxes!

Today is Week 4 of the class.  Wonder what she'll show us today?  Until then, I'll rework the last one a bit and see if I can make it look more like me.  I definitely made my eyes too big in the sockets.  I have little squinch eyes, not big eyes.


Unknown said...

Natasha is a really good portrait artist, I see her at sketch group and I always like her drawings. Your own portraits are really well done too! I don't know if I could ever do a self portrait. You make it look easy and fun though, with excellent results!

RH Carpenter said...

Thanks, Katherine - it's not right yet but it looks like me, I guess. Natasha knows her stuff and I'm sure she's confused and amazed at times at our total lack of understanding of what she thinks are simple concepts and rules :) But she's very patient with us.

Autumn Leaves said...

Oh you have a cleft in your chin! I never knew that! I think your self-portrait efforts are wonderful, Rhonda!

Katherine Harra said...

Rhonda, in the third one I'm thinking the partial shading doesn't look like a mustache: looks like someone who's been blowing her poor nose for too long. These are all very good. I gave up "selfies" a long time ago.

Debbie Nolan said...

Dear Rhonda - I think it is awesome that you are doing portraits...that has to be one of the most difficult of drawings and also one of yourself too. Years ago I did one looking at myself in the eyes were too big. Have to give it a try again sometime. Take care and hope you get feeling better soon.

RH Carpenter said...

Yep, Sherry. Genetics are a funny thing - I actually have my Dad's mouth and chin. My cleft (firstborn) is pretty deep; my brothers (middle child) is less than mine but more than my sister's (last born). Guess that cleft gene was getting pretty thinned out by the 3rd time around! ha ha

Katherine, considering you are right about blowing the nose, maybe that's true! ha ha

Debbie, thanks, it's a challenge but I really want to be able to do this - and you can't do it if you don't try and keep practicing - so this art thing is not easy!!