Monday, January 14, 2013

Ida, Portrait Redo, Part 3

Before I repainted this portrait I looked through the head and figure drawing books in my library and decided this diagram from Drawing the Head and Figure by Jack Hamm was the simplest one for me to use. But, being me, I continued to look through the various books. After the third painting session I saw some diagrams in Burne Hogarth's Drawing the Human Head which made sense to me. First of all he divided the basic head into thirds, rather than quarters

He also had diagrams of what happens as the head turns. I knew the photo I was working from was almost a profile but not quite. However, I wasn't sure how to adjust for the turn of the head. These diagrams were helpful.

I noted that the distance A to B is the same as the distance C to D. I had looked at these diagrams before but the meaning never really came through to me. Neither of these examples were the far turn that was in my photo but in the next set of diagrams he drew a right facing head that was close to my photo. Thanks to the button on the computer that gives me a mirror image, I turned the right facing diagrams into left facing ones.

And, yes, the Ida in the photo has her head tilted up just a bit so this diagram was helpful also. Again I reversed the image with computer magic.  Ida's head is not tilted nearly as far up as this diagram shows but it reminded me of the curved nature of the human head.

With the information from Hamm's book, I repainted from the original ... this. 

After looking at the diagrams in Hogarth's book, I drew these short green lines on this image using software on our computer.

That was a help.

But I decided I needed more guide lines.

I continued painting and adjusting and finally stopped at this point.

I continue to look at the painting and I see adjustments I could make to improve it. However, I have learned about the proportions of a profile and, as a bonus, a bit about what happens when a head turns. I'll set this aside and work on something else.

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