Started the 100 heads challenge...
6mo
Dan B
Decided to dive in and give it a go! Though only 5 heads a day for 20 days due to available time. Hoping I can keep it going every day. Here's day one, ready for critique. I want to try out different materials as I go too, push myself to not just use the tools I'm most comfortable with.
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Dan B
Day 20, ooh yeah. Notes: The finish line! Thought I still had one to go (#88) but on recount realised I'd done two #40's, so all finished. I'm going to do a separate post with my thoughts upon completing the challenge, so just sticking to the last five here. Glad I finished on paper and not digitally, I think charcoal is still my favourite after all this, though I am surprised I continue to enjoy fineliners. I rushed #96 a bit and can see very patchy shading, then took my time with #99 to enjoy the detail.
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Dan B
Day 19, the penultimate. Notes: Appears I missed #89 somehow, so thought I'd caught up now the power is back on (yes!), but no... So six more to do tomorrow to hopefully finish. I must be enjoying the digital drawing because I've noticed I've moved from mostly physical to mostly digital. Trying to focus most on getting the brow line and plane change to the side of the head correct mostly using Loomis method. This challenge has been great for familiarizing with digital brushes. #81/82 added here as I couldn't upload them earlier.
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Dan B
Days 17 & 18 Again falling behind because power is not back on yet (Possibly not back on till the end of the week still :/ ). I’ve missed a couple of days now but it’s just been difficult without lighting or charged devices at times with keeping everything else running... Still got some time tonight, so up to 87 now, until the laptop I’m using for reference went flat. I also have a couple I did on paper but haven’t uploaded yet. Had fun experimenting again, using the pen brushes, then tried a painting, then went even more experimental with the ‘salt blossom’ brush. Measurement seems to go out the window a little if I speed up, but I also don’t want to be too slow.
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Dan B
Day 16 Notes: Should be 17, but missed a day yesterday because we had bad storms and the power’s been out for two days now. Got a generator thankfully but just use it sparingly. Worst thing is no lights at night, so I won’t get time to draw on paper until the power is back on... Had fun again experimenting this evening using different brushes. I’m really glad I decided to mix up the brushes because it’s helped me in simplifying shapes and lines, particularly with hair which I’ve struggled with immensely in the past. The days of sculptures with beards seem long ago, but the pain remains :p Got some live-streams and course videos to catch up on, not getting enough of a fix at the moment! Definitely still struggling a bit with the eyes, mouth and particularly nose, but I feel I’m getting a bit better.
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Dan B
Day 15, 75% done... Notes: Enjoyed the poses today, particularly doing something a bit different with the dry brush marker. Still getting the perspectives and proportions a bit wrong, but I think I’m doing much better than when I started. Also still can’t figure out how to simplify eyes well, I think I need to start drawing the circle for the eyeball to wrap the eyes around. Got six done today, so back on track. Power outage at home tonight, so limited tech use... Critiques are always welcome :)
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Dan B
Day 14... I can see the finish line... Notes: Finally got some time (and space) to do some charcoal drawing, which I enjoyed. I haven't tried charcoal portraits before so it was nice to apply what I've learned so far to traditional charcoal (68+69 on newsprint). Didn't get the five done though, one short today. Just ran out of time with other things on I'm surprised how much I'm enjoying digital drawing after struggling with it through Krita and on the iPad with Autodesk Sketchbook when I tried them briefly. The right program can make a difference. A stylus with tilt control is also mandatory I think for doing charcoal, hence the Krita struggles Worked on measurement more today, I think it definitely helped. Struggled a bit with eyes today.
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Dan B
Day 13... Notes: I'm struggling a bit now I think. I'm trying to measure but getting stuck in a bit of detail and then rushing and I think going backwards a bit. I'm still struggling with getting the nose represented correctly and eye shape. I haven't gotten the hang of simplifying well which is frustrating, though I don't expect to be instantly good :p A lot of these references suck!! Straight on, soft light source, multiple light sources, heavy wrinkles and hair detail, poor quality images, etc. Next time I do a challenge like this I'm going to browse through the references first and see if they're good, particularly if like this one I'm a beginner. I need to work on lighting and shading, I feel like I'm not getting the lighting in before the detail or just adding it randomly as I go. Maybe I need to reduce the size of these a bit so they're more like thumbnails. Annoyed I didn't get time to do any on physical media today.
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Dan B
Day 12 Got a bit experimental with the brushes today, they were hard to use, particularly the sketch marker as it it draws faintly and I had to do a new line/mark every time to darken it. Had enough of it pretty quickly but finished the drawing anyway. Have I mentioned before I hate doing statues with beards? Back again they were. The first one took a while, so the last ones were done pretty quickly to get them done. Trying to make sure I keep mixing digital and physical media. And included some other fun I had today too, a chunky chalcidoid wasp.
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Tom Donovan
Hey Dan, Im new to critique so bare with me. You're off to a great start - couple of things I could recommend here: squint your eyes and make your marks based off values (shadows vs light). Use GOOD reference I cannot stress this enough, some photos have lighting that makes it difficult to study. No.4 is looking good you can see a nice shadow form on the side of the head. Use photos with clearly defined light source will make this challenge a whole lot easier. Learn some basic structure, learn about the zygomatic, glabella, get some generall landmark lines which I've seen you do in no.3 Nice! keep them light a great method to help with these marks is Riley Rythms (if you google Riley Rythms Head or something you should find plenty of videos that outline the Riley Method). Also Loomis's Book Drawing Head Hands and Feet (I think thats the title) shows a great method of drawing a ball cutting the sides off and placing a few lines for land marks. EDIT: I didnt see you're other posts until just then - sorry ahah I realise this is old and you've already improved.
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Dan B
Thanks Thomas. I'm slowly getting there :p The Reilly rhythms (though there seems to be many variations of them?) have helped with the mouth and nose so far, but still memorizing them. I agree on the references, a lot of them suck (dual light sources, flat light), but they're from the challenge Pinterest board so I'm sticking to them for the 100...
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Dan B
Day 11 Oof, today was tough. Got five done though. Started late, felt rushed, didn't measure things well, worked on detail more than shapes. I do like playing with unfamiliar brushes as it makes me simplify again and gets me to loosen up a bit. I feel I started well today with the first two, but didn't do well with the physical media. I've surprised myself that I've been able to get all of these out on the first go, aside one. I thought I'd be screwing up a lot of them and doing re-do's.
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Tom Donovan
51 + 52 Quality. Really dig those.
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Dan B
Day 10... And I made it to 50, YES! What a journey so far... Notes: caught up by getting nine done today, very happy with that. Went a bit more experimental towards the end, trying some different brushes in Infinite painter. Good for keeping it simple and I think it showed some progress in that my proportions weren't too far off and the faces were still somewhat recognizable to the reference. For the carbon pencil one, the reference was actually looking up, I don't know how I straightened the stare out so completely :/ Looked up a bit of the Reilly method, quite useful for the mouth/nose, but I found it not so easy to use for angled views. Going for bigger shapes for beards definitely helped make them manageable. I think my favourites today were #42 and #49. Over the peak now, downhill to the finish! If I get time tomorrow I want to do one of them with charcoal and pastel, my favourites. Also got my submission in for the monthly challenge, so great day all round :)
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Yiming Wu
Actually why not move this thread to Community Challenge category? @Stan Prokopenko This would make a great thread there :D
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Dan B
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Day 9. Notes: Caught up ever so slightly getting six done today. I am quite, quite sick of doing sculptured dudes with beards! Quite. I'm finding too many poses in this challenge are a) sculptured guys with beards, b) sculptures and c) slightly off straight on to about 20 degrees). It could do with more variety. I'm also finding I'm committing more time to drawing with this challenge, where previously I'd kind of wander off after a while to play games or other distractions. I like having this focus. Almost halfway, phew. Also had fun trying to do my favourite traditional style digitally: charcoal/carbon with some pastel (wrens). Do bird heads count as portraits? :p Once I've completed the challenge I'm going to watch Ahmed's video of him drawing them all, but I don't want to watch it before I'm done so I don't start just copying his ideas. Help: The pen drawing (#36) was really hard with so much beard detail. How do you simplify that? It was so chaotic I just couldn't find shapes unlike #38.
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oliver lindenskov
Hey Dan, I do realise that I advised you find a way of constructing the heads, and I think that looks to be working really well for you as far as alignment of features and feeling of form. Good job! However, for things like beards and large hair I sometimes find it easier to use an envelope and then work inward from there, but it might work better when you aren't using permanent mediums and can erase a lot. Cheering for you!
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Yiming Wu
I like how you define the beard and all the hairy stuff! Nice you could draw those heads from different angles, a more or less straight on head is very hard to do IMO. Actually I did do some sculpture heads as practice some time ago, which involve some hairy stuff, but I don't really care much about clear structure at those places as I was learning about facial features then. Let me find some of mine here: I should definitely do more of those... These are maybe about 1.5 years ago.I don't quite get the feel recently with pens :( weird.
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Dan B
Day 8. Whelp, slipped back a bit today, but for good reason: I was working on my submission for the movie poster contest (this is new and a big challenge for me, but I'm really enjoying it). Notes: Only 1 drawing, so not much. Done in Infinite Painter as that's what I'm using for the contest. Only three layers allowed in the trial version so it requires working within constraints! I feel like I'm getting a bit better at proportions and noticing shapes, hopefully catch up again a bit tomorrow. I would really like to do the challenge within 20 days.
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Dan B
Day 7 Notes: caught up a bit today, only one behind now! This evening's drawings (30-33) were a struggle and I didn't enjoy them. I was kind of in a rush but then took a while anyway so skipped measurement and other things and made that worse by using fineliner and carbon. Slowed down again with #33 again and used my favourite graphite pencil, felt better (#34 I actually did earlier but forgot to number). Starting to get more variety in the references aside sculpture busts, so that's nice Feel like I'm learning a lot already, keen to see what I notice at 100. Over 1/3 of the way there, YES! My Intuos Art doesn't have tilt detection. I'm realising very quickly how much that sucks, might be doing some tablet shopping soon...
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Arthur Cardoso
Damn dude, seeing your determination is really inspiring. Like training stuff you are not comfortable with is really cool and brave! I would be careful with your proportions of the facial features though. You said it youself that you have a hard time with the nose and mouth. Usually when i have similiar problem I like to create rectangles to limit the size of the features, to keep it realistic. Keep up your work, looking foward to what you do in the future!
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Dan B
Thanks for that, using a bounding box for the features is a good idea. I've been trying to imagine plumb lines from the eyes but it's hard to keep track of the alignment.
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Dan B
Day 6... Notes: only got two portraits done today and I should already be in bed. Spent some time on my concept for the monthly challenge earlier instead. Time pressure leading to quicker drawings seems to be a good thing, I'm getting more gestural and paying attention to shadow shapes and important lines rather than going into detail. My accuracy is definitely improving a bit, though I still manage to stray from the structure lines a bit. Infinite painter again today as it allowed me to do them quickly, still enjoying it. Wish I could edit the first post to add the subsequent images to it...
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Dan B
Day 5... Notes: Took too much time worrying about detail on the first one so went to fineliner for the second to get away from that. Was feeling very sick of sculptures with the third one so just went to do big shadow shapes, before deciding to add some detail after. But was pretty over it so didn't worry about measuring etc.. For the 5th one I just went for gestural and quick, focusing on lines and shapes and not detail, this one end up being fun, even though it was a sculpture! Quarter of the way there, phew.
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Yiming Wu
I like how you have those slight caricature (?) in each of them. Do you do that intentionally? And... do you typically go straight in or make some construction lines first?
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Dan B
Day 4, 20 done. Notes: I think I'm spending too long on each, probably 30-45 minutes each today trying out infinite painter. Drew bigger today, especially the last one. Infinite Painter on iPad is pretty cool, the Proko brush really has a nice charcoal feel to it. Getting tired of these sculpted heads, but so many to go :/ I think I'll work on shading shapes tomorrow if the references work for it.
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Ross Cline
I I love these images. Do you work traditionally at all?
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Dan B
Day 3! So far so good. Was a bit rushed this evening trying to get them done, which I think helped me stay away from details a bit so I won't complain. Notes: I really enjoy the carbon pencils, such rich darks. Also kinda enjoying the Copic fineliner, which I thought I would not enjoy at all. Still struggling with the nose and mouth, particularly getting the alignment with centre right and trying to capture the right details. Not enjoying that there are so many sculpted heads in similar style in the reference, but it's all part of the challenge. Going to do more digital attempts tomorrow hopefully, might even start to like it... Critique welcome :)
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