Category Archives: Friend Studies

Photostudy 4

Tone 2

Photostudy number 4, a big improvement I think.

Tone 2


I’m not sure what happened with numbers 2 and 3 but 4 seems back on track in terms of quality.

I still seem to be have an issues with placing the eyes a bit too high on the face but my shading seems to be improving and the face looks significantly less flat than the last two.

Another area for improvement is really getting those emotions nailed, this one is certainly close but there are still slight nuances in the eyes and mouth to pin down.

I’m also getting the hang of this new brush too which has helped improve quality.


Photostudy 3

Stuart 1

Third photostudy of a friend.

Stuart 1

The form seem on point in this piece, but again my shading is not on point and messes with the shape. I am definitely going to need to work on this aspect.

Photostudy 2


The second photostudy. Took longer with this one, not sure if its because theres more face or more emotion… or because I was watching tv too… maybe all 3.


Again the eyes are a bit too high, but more importantly the face is very flat. This is especially noticeable around the eyes and mouth and pulls a lot of emotion and light out of the face. The shading needs be improved in these areas. Furthermore the shape of the eyes and the creases in the cheeks is slightly off and again pulling emotion out of the face.

It would seem the eyes are definitely an area requiring improvement.

Photostudy 1

Louise 2

This is the first photostudy. I’m quite pleased with how this one came out, it certainly looks like Louise, but there are some flaws.

Louise 2

Ignoring the lack of detail in the hand/fingers, everything between the brow and bottom of the glass is too high up. Further more the soft curves of her cheeks are rendered square in my portrait (something I never noticed until I had finished). The shading on her eyes is also off, with her eyes too bright and the shadows too dark and small. Her hair is also lacking volume.

Despite these issues I am still pleased with this first attempt. The hairline (which I often find difficult) is quite spot on, the the expression is pretty close (but for a slight fault in the eyes). After working through the other photos I intend to go through a second time and I look forward to drawing comparisons between this and that.

[[One final not is that the portrait is quite muddy, but thats because I was lazy and used a basic squashed round brush.]]

Photostudy Plan

So I plan on doing a series of photostudies of friends to improve my portraiture skills. I’m using friends as subjects (with permission of course) rather than strangers because I am more familiar with their faces. Hopefully this will mean I will be able to spot flaws more easily.

I will also be using a grid to help with these portraits, at least initially, as it will help me to place the areas of shade more accurately.


As you can see I have several images with various expressions and angles to work with. Hopefully this project will prove fruitful.