Sie sind auf Seite 1von 3


- Everything you need is in the .ZIP folder free of charge.

- This package is created in Adobe Photoshop, but other programs with layers can
be used
- This exercise is best done with a drawing tablet
- Please do not upload anything from this package online including my photos or
my painting
- DO upload what you draw!
Learning to paint digitally can be scary, and especially disappointing when you'
re just starting out, and you have a vision in your head, but what you're drawin
g doesn't ever come out the way you want it to. It can be especially frustrating
not knowing where to start when you have never painted before.
This exercise is for beginners who have little to no experience with art, or who
would like to try digital painting that involves no lineart.
This exercise involves some optional cheat moves that can be controversial in the
art world, like tracing. Think of these steps as art training wheels. They're he
lpful to start out with and can lower your anxiety about starting. Often many be
ginning artists become afraid of ever putting pen to paper for fear of getting it
wrong. Getting started is the hardest part, and that is why I encourage the use
of cheats. Once you have built up your confidence, you no longer need to use handi
caps and will be able to see colours, levels and shapes for what they are. Cheat
s are not something to depend upon as a crutch. They're a stepping stone for bui
lding up your skill until you no longer need them.
This tutorial only involves black and white. Trust me, this is much easier. Colo
urs are very pretty, but this will teach you a solid foundation to build upon la
ter. It saves time and headache not having to deal with colour in an image.
This tutorial is made for Adobe Photoshop, but I have included unlayered files t
hat can be used in any program that allows layers and has similar functions as P
START: Open up your drawing program and Select WorkPhoto1.JPG and open it in a n
ew document, or open up the sample .PSD file which has everything.
Create a new layer via copy of this photo. (ctrl + J)
On this new layer via copy, Go to Image > Adjustments > Posterize
Set the levels to 10.
Use the eyedropper tool and create a swatch pallete from the levels that you see
Remember, absolute white and absolute black are rarely if ever used in digital a
rt. They are too stark and don't blend well. It's better to paint within the sof
ter medium greys than black and white.
While you are painting your swatches, make sure you're using a hard brush at 100
% opacity. You want an accurate pallete to work from.
If you want, you can label your shades. With 1 being the lightest you will work
with and 10 being the darkest. (As you move forward in art, you can create more
levels if you like, 20, 30, 100, etc)

In a new layer, paste the outline on top of the photo. This outline serves no ar
tistic purpose. It is a measurement tool to make sure your painting remains prop
ortional. Do not use this as lineart and do not paint with this layer showing. I
t is a position reference only.
On top of the facial outline, you can also paste the facial measurement lines. A
gain, these only serve as guidelines to see if your facial features are starting
to drift. Do not paint with this layer on.
Create a new empty layer on top of the reduced colour photo and underneath the o
utline layer. On this layer, with a large brush, start to block out the major ar
eas. Don't worry about going outside the lines. That's what your outline is for.
Don't worry about following the photo exactly. Do this quickly. It should not t
ake more than 10 minutes to fill in the major areas simply. DO NOT PAINT DETAILS
! No eyes, no eyelashes, no creases or hairs. You are only looking for major are
as of tone.
Why do we do this?
We are looking to reduce the face into simple shapes and shades instead of what
our brain knows to be features. Lots of beginning artists think of eyes as black
circles inside black almond shapes. A nose is a wedge shape or circle in the mi
ddle of the head. Lips are ovals.
This is untrue in painting. None of these shapes actually exist. The goal of thi
s exercise is to escape our pre-existing ideas of what faces should look like, and
paint what the photo is telling us to paint. We are often arguing in our minds
where features should go and what they should look like. This is also reinforced
by drawing tutorials.
I.E. The eyes should be one eye width apart and sit on the upper half of the head
When painting realism, you start to see that features are uneven. They are not a
s simple as line art would allow. When looking at my face, for example, my eyes
are uneven. They are not the same size and they are not exactly parallel to each
other. Allow yourself to see and paint the flaws and inexactness of real life.
Once you have the basic blocking done, you can start to refine your details. Tur
n off your outline layers. Reduce the size of your brush by half. (If it was 30
before, make it 15, etc) Use the same swatches that you used before and refine t
he details. You can flip on and off between your outline layer and your photo un
derneath, but always paint with these layers off. Only have the full reference p
hoto beside you as a floating document.
In Photoshop, there is also a grid option. Go to View > Show > Grid
To adjust your grid settings, go to Edit > Preferences > Guides, Grids and Slice
I prefer a grid that uses fractions (halves, thirds, etc) rather than one based
on empirical measurements (inches or centimetres)
Once you have started to refine your major areas more, you can zoom in further a
nd choose areas to start to detail. At this point, you can start using transpare
ncy and colour picking to blend.
DO NOT USE THE FOLLOWING TOOLS: Dodge, Burn, Smudge, Blur, Selection Wand, Paint
This exercise is for learning to blend without those. And you can do just fine w
ithout them.

To blend your shades:

Pick an area where there are two shades that are only ONE level apart.
Set the transparency on your brush to 50%.
Select either the darker or lighter shade.
Paint that shade onto the opposide.
Now take the eyedropper tool again and pick that middle shade, and paint it betw
een. And again between.
You are working in fractions!
Say your tones are 5 and 6, and you choose to layer 6 onto 5. You are painting 5
and 1/2. And then again would be 5 and 3/4. 5 and 7/8, etc. All to way until yo
u've blended up to 6. Never paint darker than the darkest tone or lighter than t
he lightest tone when blending. You will be changing your levels entirely.
Once you've practiced blending the major areas, and you are happy with it, you c
an move on to details and texture. All details are are very small level changes.
All texture is is very subtle level changes. We are playing with light and tone
here to give the illusion of shape and form.
The more and more you zoom in, the more you can refine your drawing. Remember to
zoom out and look at the total painting frequently. Turn your guidelines on and
off. Turn your painting off to reveal the photo underneath and compare what you
're drawing to what you're seeing. Not just the shape and position, but the leve
ls as well.
When painting, remember: A misplaced or crooked feature does not mean that you d
rew it wrong, it just means that the levels are wrong for the area it's supposed
to be in. There is no need to feel disappointed or erase the whole thing. Eithe
r lighten or darken the mistake and it will start to look like you want it to. A
lways paint on top of your mistakes. Do not erase, do not move backwards in your
history. Keep moving forward!
Other things you can do to remove your eye from seeing symbols: Flip the entire
document sideways or upside down. This removes your brain's ability to see eye and
nose and only allows it to see abstract shapes in light and dark shades.
Beyond that, it is up to you how much detail you want to add to your painting. Y
ou can keep going until you have tiny pores and eyelashes, or stop with just som
e basic tones. It's a good idea to decide how much time you want to give yoursel
f beforehand so that you're not spending too much time on one area.
Good luck and keep on drawing