As an artistic type, and a social scientist, and an actress, I am intrigued by faces. I really look at faces.
What makes a person pretty, approachable, frightening? What makes a gesture recognizable to us? A tilt of the head? an angle of the eyes? the shape of a mouth curling up on one corner? A crease under the eyes making us feel they are about to laugh?
I often pull out interesting faces from ads in magazines. I find Marie Claire to be one of the best for this. All the faces here today are from Marie-Claire. They are almost full page, so almost life size.
What do I do with them other than analyze them for inspiration and beauty?
1. Mostly I sketch them
this can be done by just looking at them or tracing a shape/line, practicing shadows and highlights. The very smallest change in an angle will change the faces meaning. I draw, and draw, and draw. I draw people at restaurants. I practice.
2. Reference for gestures. When I want a face for a doll or quilt, with a certain attitude I look through my file folder of faces to see which one makes me feel that attitude.
3. When I started making original artwork I had little confidence. So I sometimes traced a face onto watercolor paper, or transferred it to fabric, as a starting point. Either by using the line drawing as a pattern or a light box to trace it onto fabric. Just as a learning tool for myself
This is for learning, and making a piece for yourself, not to be sold or entered into competition. You must get written permission to use an image in that case.
Contact copyright lawyers for real information just to be sure.
Of course this technique can be done with your original photos . Trace the lines and change the size according to your needs.
And the EYES have it!
there is an amazing amount of expression in the angle of eyes, the amount of iris showing, the nose shadows.
wonder if his modeling coach said, "smize! "
Smile with your eyes!