Hi everyone I need help from you artist who are proficient  in pastel portraits . I love to do portraits in pastels most of all ...here is my problem I would like help on how to get a better likeness of my subjects . Below is my grandson Max who is 8 yrs old ... my daughter told me it was OK !!  that it doesn't really look like him.... she never really likes ANYTHING I do but that is another story . Anyway please help me see what I can do to improve my likeness what am I not seeing . I do see I need to darken his hair for one .

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Hi Brenda,  I have had a look at your portrait of Max and at the moment I think you have lengthened his face a little therefore making him a tad older than he is.   I have a notion the problem lies with the length of his chin or the shading of his chin.   You have also opened his eyes a touch.  I am at sixes and sevens today but I will have another look when I have got more time to concentrate and my brain is not clogged up with other things whirling around.  I will as I say have another look and get back to you.  Do let me know if you think I am on the right track with my thoughts.

Dorothy

Hiya Brenda,

When I'm doing a portrait I like to catch the persons likeness early on, and then concentrate on the refinements like the correct colours, tones and shading. A good way to get everything in the right place at the beginning of a portrait, is to use a grid. This not only helps with catching the likeness, but also with centralizing the subject.

I think you've captured your grandsons likeness well, and all it needs is refining.

Good luck...........Mark

hi Mark , I don't often get back in here . I redid my grandson's pastel and never re-posted ...but the weird thing is I used my projector for that reason of making sure I have everything in place . But somehow along the way it gets away I guess ...anyway here is the second try ...Also the next one I did was in colored pencil of a new photo taken recently . I have just been doing colored pencil since June so I an still learning ....Thanks for your interest and tips

Hiya Brenda,

Don't trust projectors, especially for portraits. Unless you get the image absolutely square-on, they can distort the subject. Like elongating someone's face for instance.

Well done with your grandson's pics.

Mark

Hi Brenda,

I have a formidable ally for when I do portraits - a MIRROR!  Try using a hand held mirror to look at your portrait, you'll find you're better able to see "mistakes" when looking at your painting through a mirror.  If I use just my eyes, I'm not seeing my mistakes, but the trusty mirror doesn't beat around the bush with me.  I see EVERYTHING that is amiss, and I mean everything.  I might lie to myself, but that mirror refuses to lie.  Anyway, try that.  

I have to say that your portraits are well done!  GREAT effort!  Your use of color is spot on!  

Thanks so much Jenifer . I have a couple more portraits to post just haven't had the time soon though

Jenifer Nadira Knight said:

Hi Brenda,

I have a formidable ally for when I do portraits - a MIRROR!  Try using a hand held mirror to look at your portrait, you'll find you're better able to see "mistakes" when looking at your painting through a mirror.  If I use just my eyes, I'm not seeing my mistakes, but the trusty mirror doesn't beat around the bush with me.  I see EVERYTHING that is amiss, and I mean everything.  I might lie to myself, but that mirror refuses to lie.  Anyway, try that.  

I have to say that your portraits are well done!  GREAT effort!  Your use of color is spot on!  

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