one woman's view into a world of creativity

Symbol Portrait Update

I thought I’d post the final symbol portrait, in case anyone wanted to see it.  Sorry about the general lack of posts.  At this point in my life academics comes first, so I haven’t had the time to produce quality posts.

A portrait made out of symbols varying in size, shape, and proximity to create value scale.

I struggled the most with the eyes.  I always struggle with eyes.  It’s hard to make sure they are level (or in this case on a correct angle).  It’s also difficult to make sure the eyes (especially the pupils!) are pointing in the same direction.  Since the eyes are gently downcast and not fully open, I struggled to shape the lids properly.  The eyelashes also bring in further difficulty in this picture because they curl above the lids in some places while moving down and obscuring the eyes in other places.  The right eye (viewer’s right)  is slightly smaller, but it appeared that way in the photograph.  Nevertheless, I don’t think I curved the lower lid correctly to match that of the left eye.  I always spend a great deal of time on the eyes in portraits, for they humanize the image with the spark of life.  We also automatically look into the eyes, making them a prime region of focus.  If you get it wrong – even the slightest bit – it becomes terribly obvious.  Eyes also vary greatly from person to person, and getting the eyes right is critical to capturing the personality of the subject, rendering them recognizable.

Other areas I struggled with were the nose and the cranial shape.  In the initial drawing I struggled to shape the nostrils properly, but eventually got it down.  Modeling with value helped a lot for it transformed the flat image into a three-dimensional object.  As for the cranial shape, I’m still not sure about the forehead and back of the skull.  I felt like the forehead of the original sketch was too shallow, so I lengthened it, but I’m not sure if I overdid it, or if it’s still too short.  I’m also not sure if the back of the skull does not project out enough.  It’s difficult to tell with the angle of face.

We’ll critique our portraits in class on Tuesday, so maybe I’ll recognize others strengths and weaknesses then and be able to better address my concerns.


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