Next, get the A3 photographs. Now, there are many ways in which you can begin to get your image down on paper. Some people use the grid method, some sight size and some comparative measurements. It’s totally up to you. Use whichever way you find works best for you. If you’re going to be doing the work much bigger than the photograph, using a grid can sometimes speed things up however you’re missing out crucial parts of the learning process.
A good way to get your out lines is to ‘block in’, where you simplify the shapes, and go from the general to the specific, slowly and carefully narrowing your straight bold lines down to little details. Once you have your outlines, or the vital info you wish to possess you are ready to begin!
Many artists tell you to work from left top to bottom right, when using this method of drawing; however I usually start with the eyes and work outward. The aim of these techniques is to finish an area completely before moving on.
The way to do this is to build patience. A nice way to look at it is to spend a few hours or maybe a full day, or even a week, doing this one part. Imagine you’re doing lots and lots of tiny little drawings. Rather than just one big one. If you adjust your psychology into seeing it as a little abstract drawing in itself, you are more apt to feel like you have accomplished something today. Maybe you may spend all day doing an inch x inch mini abstract drawing that will eventually amount to a large piece. However, if you see it as, you’re doing one large piece and you have spent all day and only done a wrinkle on his eye, you may feel disheartened and slow. Whatever you do, don’t fall into the trap of getting so excited when you see the face popping out at you and rush. This will lead to the work looking rushed, and believe me, having rushed my work through excitement many a time in the past, it leaves you with a feeling of having just cheated yourself out of an extremely good learning opportunity.
A good way to do the skin around the eyes is to not just look at the photo and copy everything on it. Get a mirror, observe your own eyes, and trust me it’s the next best thing to real life. Play with lighting on your face. Photo’s can be extremely limiting in terms of creativity so try to get the best you can from what you have got. Observe the details on your face and how the light interacts with them. Try to feel the underlying muscles, the texture on his face. There is so much more to this than just copying what you see. When you see a large pour for example, feel its indentation with your mind’s eye.
Tip: To avoid leaning on your work in progress, we have to take extra care by using some simple extra pieces of inventory. In painting, quite often, a Maul Stick is used. This is because you cannot rest your hand on your work surface for pretty obvious reasons... you will smudge and ruin the work. With pencil, you may, use a Maul Stick, should you wish too, and would be best if you’re working on an easel or some sort of vertical stand. However, when doing pencil work, a piece of paper good enough to cover your hand will suffice. Many people use tracing paper. I have tried both and not really noticed any kind of difference. As long as you take care and lift the piece of paper when you’re done with it (without scraping your nails and fingertips into the paper. Bending a corner which would make it easier to grab would work.