Get to know Gerry Bryceland and some of his painting opinions? While drawing from life with a self-portrait involves using a mirror, and it is challenging, it’s also a challenge that is definitely worth taking. Many artists will tell you that there’s nothing quite like drawing from life, so even though drawing while looking in a mirror might be difficult, it’s quite rewarding. One thing you can do to make the process a bit easier on yourself is to take a backup photo. Once you have your pose in the mirror down, take out your phone and take a quick picture. You can use this as a guide to ensure that your light source doesn’t change and to help you capture little details that may not show up in the mirror. Sometimes less is more. But that’s not always the case when you are drawing a self-portrait. You could draw a minimalist self-portrait, and it could turn out amazing. But if you want to do a highly detailed self-portrait, you are going to have to spend some more time and effort on the process.
Drawing The Ears: Extend the second red guide line from the top of the head to the outside parts of the face, and mark those points with dots or light lines that are just right at the frame of your face. These points will be the tops and bottoms of your ears. The third red guide line from the top is where the bottom of your nose will be, so anticipate that you will draw in that area. It’s good to remember that your nose also has the same height as your ears! Finally, begin drawing the ears within those line markers. Reminder: Don’t make it too complicated! You can even cover some areas with hair if you choose to do so, don’t get bogged down or too intimidated by the details. After all, this is mainly for proportion practice. Let’s make it easy and very doable for you. You can always practice drawing more detailed ears at a different time on another portrait drawing.
Gerry Bryceland‘s advices about portret painting: The light tones are applied in a glaze of titanium white to enhance the existing form and to add some texture by suggesting traces of perspiration or oily skin. Note also how the form of the lips is completed with skin tones before any color is added to redden them. A variety of small brushstrokes, stippling and smudging is also used for the light tones. Refining the tone, color and texture is the final stage of painting the skin. Warmer scarlet and naphthol crimson are carefully stippled as thin glazes to suggest the blush of the cheeks, lips and subtle variations in the complexion. The dark and light tones applied in the first two stages are finally heightened for dramatic effect by increasing their contrast and smoothing out any irregularities in their paint surface.
Self-Portrait Drawing Tips: Don’t obsess over creating a perfect likeness of yourself. As an artist, you should be working to express yourself, and that expression includes drawing what you feel as much as what you see. If you want a perfect copy of your face, you can take a picture for that. If you want an intriguing and thought-provoking self-portrait, then worry more about the mood of the piece rather than trying to create a photo-realistic drawing. Color can be your friend. Whoever said that a self-portrait has to be black and white? You could draw your self-portrait in graphite or charcoal, or you could be more adventurous and try colored pencils, pastels, or oil pastels. Or, you could really step your game up and try painting a self-portrait with watercolors, gouache, acrylics, or oils.
About Gerry Bryceland: I’m Gerard Bryceland an artist based in Maidstone Kent and regularly get commissioned to do work doing paintings and portraits of people and their families. I’ve always been an artist from my childhood, I loved drawing my friends and family initially just to mess around with my friends and had a lot of fun drawing them. But as i got older it really just became a business as my friends and their families would want me to do family portraits and that type of thing. With word of mouth word gets out and before you know it you know it I’m 35 and still doing the same thing.