Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Sam Reboot

I finally had to face the fact that no matter what I did to try to fix my Sam drawing, I still didn't like it. Even the satisfaction with the last tweaking faded after a few days. I realized that the only way to make it work would be to redraw the body.

I think the problem in general was that this original pose just didn't seem natural. The figure's left shoulder was too high and looked contorted and I could never figure out where to position the right shoulder. Also his left shoulder looked too big, but whenever I tried to scale it down, it would throw everything out of whack.

Before getting to my latest version, I tried lowering the shoulder lines, lengthening them out, I made his chest larger, made it smaller, I redrew his arm and hand, I tried obscuring his whole right shoulder in the shadows, but it just never worked.

I was really ready to throw everything out the window, but I figured I could give it one more go, so I erased his body and started again. I wasn't sure that the paper would take this, but I figured I had nothing to lose.

I searched my reference images for a compatible body pose and I found one that I thought could work. It even had a similar light source, so this is what the new drawing looked like.

The color is off in the photo, but you can see where the paper was stained by the previous color pencil application. In this photo I have also already done a lot of new background work on the right.

The blotchy areas in the backgound are actually shiny spots causing reflections in the picture. All my brushing and layers of color have pretty much killed the tooth of the paper in these areas. If I can get this finished, hopefully spraying on a fixative will help to even up the surface at the end.

This last progress shot shows that I have been able to cover up the stained areas and I'm finally proceeding to final coloring and shadows. I'm not sure how this will end up, but I like it again. And I have learned some good lessons :-)


  1. Oh my Lupe this must have been an nightmare for you but I can see this working now.

    Beautiful work. You are so talented...I am in awe.

    Hey is the guy doing with the red Jumper. I see you are still working on it.

  2. I liked the early version but this one surpasses it.

    The shirt enhances the portrait

  3. Thank you Dors, as always you say such nice things :-)

    I haven't made much progress on my other project but once I finish the Sam portrait, hopefully very soon, I'll continue on the other one. I just wanted to finish something and Sam seemed a likelier candidate for a quicker completion. Of course Sam gave me some problems too, but they seem to have be resolved now. (knock on wood!)

  4. Sue, thanks so much for the comment! This one has given me a lot of trouble but I think I'm on the right path at last :-) I like this upper body and shirt much better too!