Figure & Motion: Self-Portrait


In my Figure and Motion class, our last project was to draw a self-portrait of ourselves. Using both white and black charcoal, a shammy, and blending stumps of numerous thicknesses/sizes I was able to recreate a photo of myself.

For my self portrait, I wanted to convey a part of my personality, as well as one of my favorite features I admire about myself. Timidness and my eyes. Throughout my life, I struggled with extreme shyness and I wanted my self-portrait to have a somewhat “shy” appearance to my expression. In my self-portrait I am looking directly at the viewer, but my expression is that of someone who looks a little unsure about oneself. I wanted my eyes to be the main focus of my self-portrait, since I receive many compliments about how interesting they look, especially in the light.

In terms of elements of design I tried to keep value in mind, and I used shading to give my face, as well as my hair, a range of different darks and light so that it would represent shadows and highlights. I feel that the shading in my eyes is a strong example of value. Using darker charcoal I was able to define the dark rings along the outer-side of my eyes, and blended whites with darks to create the gray mid-tones around the pupils. White charcoal was used to make the reflection of the light being cast onto my eyes. Line is also used within my self-portrait, especially in the lips. The dark inner line of my lips contrasts with the lighter, fleshy part of the lips and gives it a greater sense of volume. If was to go back and change anything in my self-portrait, it would be the shading of the nose. The shading could possibly be more darker, and the lines of the nose should probably be more blended out then they are. Overall, I really enjoyed working on this self-portrait and I am pleased with the result.

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