Sketchbook of Studies,Sketches and Ideas!
Hello, Everyone! I'm going to start posting some stuff on here from now on! I feel like I've been living alone with my studies and all that for too long now, and I'm starting to think I need practice when it comes to actually showing my stuff off..
I keep telling myself how I'm going to post " that next better picture " but it never actually happens, and I keep asking myself why I haven't become a part of this great community yet. So here I go, from now on I'll start posting!

I greatly appreciate any crits and/or tips! Please leave a comment! :)


I'm just now learning how to post here! So please tell me if I'm doing something wrong!

Here is a study I did two days ago! I recently started practicing drawing faces, I did lots of pencil sketches and I then decided to try and actually render a face to completion. I didn't reference any specific face for this, but I did look at lots of different images, both from different artists to see how they did it and my own face to see how the light might fall.

I wasnt primarily focused on the anatomy of the face for this painting, its just a simple straight forward view with lighting from the side. I think i'll paint future face-studies on a darker background. Mouth especially gave me trouble on this..

Crits are very welcome! On the lighting/rendering and also on the overall anatomy! I'd like to give the skin some more texture in the future!

Here are two self-portraits I did from my webcam after the study I just posted, the first one is a very quick one doing a silly face in a 3/4 view. studying how the face/lips/eyes move and how the light might fall on it.

The second picture is a longer study of my own face tilting my face up slightly... Its a hard angle for me getting the jaw like that, and the eyes were really hard too ( i had a hard time not making my eyes look asian )

Both pictures started with me looking at myself through the webcam window, although i finished the second one with a screenshot because i didnt feel like holding the pose anymore. I think I'll get myself a mirror to do these studies in the future, because the webcam kinda simplifies the values.

I had a really hard time doing the eyes on the second one, tilting my head up slightly and looking down made my eyes squint, and I dont know if i've ever drawn a squint from a below-angle before.

Once again I'd love tips on how to give the skin some more texture, I feel like i have to strike a balance in making the skin look too texture-ish and monster-like and too smooth. i'd like to be able to draw somewhat smooth human skin with some texture, now i'm definately painting it too smooth.

Crits are very appreciated!

Attached Files Image(s)

Hello and welcome! :)
You are pretty good with judging your own work. That's a really valuable skill! I agree with you, that you haven't found your balance yet. The two self portraits you did are two pretty extreme examples.
I'm having the same problem, so I'm not sure I can help you solve this, but what works good for me is throwing colors in with a textured brush and then blending it down a little ( I also came across a tutorial where the guy applied photographs to the whole image and then painted on top. Wasn't my thing, but maybe it's yours?).
You came pretty close with the first study, I just think you went a liiittle bit too far with the smoothness. That aside, it's really great, especially the lighting!
Anyway, I'll keep watching you, so that when you find a solution to this problem I can snatch it away for myself! :D
Happy painting!

Welcome (officially) to the group, Carl! It's good you stopped that dangerous "when I'm better" mindset and jumped in. After all, this group is about getting good, not being good!

As for the skin rendering, how you do it depends a lot on how you want the skin to look. For women and children, smooth/softer skin looks better a majority of the time. You would use a soft round for that for example(not that it is the only option.) Men tend to have rougher skin so you might use a brush that has a lot more "grit" to it.

I think a lot of the "texture" you want will come from lots of experimentation and practice. Knowing when to stop blending so you don't remove brush strokes, having enough there that it doesn't look completely smooth, knowing which brushes work best for which results, ect. Trial and error!

Hope this helps and keep posting! (Great job on the throat in the second sp btw!)

Thanks a lot guys! I really appreciate it!
These past few days i've just been doing some traditional studies.. and i've been playing around a little with some sculpey. Which is why I havnt posted anything.

Anyways! I did this portrait-piece-practice.. I didnt really spend any time thinking about the character design or anything, I spent all my time on rendering and drawing.

I'm really only doing this piece for myself, but I'm REALLY stuck right now.. I'd like to know how to improve it but i'm at a point now where i dont know if i like the composition and i feel like the face isnt.. intense enough. i kinda want to make it pop more..

This was a pretty hard angle for me, still not as hard as an upwards-angle tho. I tried giving him darker skin, which I havnt done a lot.. I find it hard striking a balance in making darker skin with a good value-range.

Crits/paintovers are loved! Seeing how I can crop/repaint the composition better would be awesome! and maybe a hint on where I can improve the contrast or something to make it better.
If I get any crits I'll try and improve it and post it again!

Attached Files Image(s)


I've been trying to get the hang of lighting things better.... i read james gurneys book and i've got a grasp when it comes to different principles and all.. but i'm having a hard time grouping my values nicely... and i'm also having a hard time knowing how dark to make the terminator/how to transition into it nicely... I've spent so much time with pen and paper focusing mainly on line that i have a hard time now when i try finishing stuff and all...

Anyways I painted this fish-in-a-shirt type guy. The idea in the beginning was just to have a strange fish sitting on the ground, the sketch didnt take me long but as I went on i was struggling a lot.. i changed things around and I wanted to finish it more. I'm not really sure about the result.. I feel like I learned a few things but I still want to get my values and lighting much better. I looked at different pictures in the progress to see what I could improve.

In the future i'll definately go for a more interesting composition and pose to start with.. if i'm going to spend this long on a picture i'd like to atleast have an interesting idea next time!

I might do some photo studies tomorrow, I want to learn how to make an image pop with contrast but I want to avoid weird muddy colors and too many blacks/whites.

Crits are very appreciated! Especially on grouping values / light!

Some face studies I did a few days ago. ( each one actually took me quite a while ) I didnt aim for perfect likeness in the features/faces themselves, I really wanted the values and the colors/rendering to look good.
I find it very hard to work with certain colors in the skin, and I seem to be losing saturation in some places.

I wanted to spend most of my time on the skin, which is why i didnt spent that much time on the hair or the clothing. ( and i didnt feel like rendering a hand on the lower one )

Ref images are from google, I searched " face " and took images I wanted to learn from.

I find paintng overall to be really hard. Blending while trying to avoid a too sharp/soft edge is difficult, but I guess the more I paint the easier it will get!

I thought to myself i'd start making one image every day, so I started working on this portrait-alien/lizard-guy, but I didnt feel like I was satisfied with it til I had worked on it for a day and a half. I think I might be too slow finish something that quickly at this stage.

I'm happy with the result, I had lots of difficulties with the composition and the material/reflections of the gun.

I wanted the design to be a little silly and oldschool, which is why I have him the small blaster and the things on his head.
Maybe I'll do some more things in this " universe " in the future, I'm very new to painting sci-fi stuff so its something i'd like to do.

Crits are extremely appreciated!
I wasn´t aware that your art is so interessting. Most novices on this site arent able of producing such quality in their work.
Definetly looking forward to what you are posting in the future.

Lizard-Alien really looks great. I like how you treated all the surfaces.
I decided to paint a robot for the first time, I didnt spend too much time on the " hands " or the lower part of the robot, I wanted all the focus on the head.

I found it hard to make the part under his left " eye " readable... you can see it as a silhuette on his right side but it kinda gets lost on his left. I tried doing some bounce light to push it forward but it didnt work as well as i wanted.

Crits are very appreciated! This is my first somewhat completed robot/vehicle ever basically, so pointers on how to improve it are very welcome!

Hey again! Yesterday I decided to paint some rocks. I've been messing around with building scenes lately, but I struggle a lot with anything that isnt characters.
So I looked at some videos about painting rocks traditionally, and I then I painted these ones.. I started with the gradient and I wanted the scene to look somewhat sunset-lit, with complementary colors. I really like the result, It looked kinda crappy for a long time until I started playing with hard/soft edges on the rock shapes, which improved it a lot! I also used a bunch of overlay layers and stuff like that.. which I normally avoid, but it really kinda helps me out.. and if its there, why not use it at the end?

Crits are very welcome! Thanks for looking!


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