Face Tweaking

I’ve been fine tuning Dean’s face and I think I’m finally satisfied. I’m putting this side-by-side comparison up to show the changes I’ve  made. They are all pretty subtle, but I think they all add up to a better likeness. Left is before, right is after tweaking.


Click here for a better look.
Starting from the top, I made his hair a little bigger. I added more volume all around. I think it balances his face a little better now.I worked on his eyebrows a bunch. I shifted the right side one up a little and filled it out more. The left side eyebrow got a makeover too. I added more texture and added a hint of more angling on the top. In general I refined the frowny lines more along his brow too.On his eyes themselves, I made his top lids a little wider. I lifted the line of the eyelid fold up just a bit, but I think it really helped to make his expression into a more thoughtful frown instead of a hard stare. (Of course that could just be me hallucinating after obsessing on this so much.)

Maybe the most noticeable change was to revert to more realistic highlights in his eyes.  I also made the pupil size smaller, again more realistic looking. I think I got carried away with the big black pupils and shiny eyeballs. He was beginning to look a little anime or beady eyed. I guess less really is more sometimes.

I changed his hairline. I made the left sideburn a little wider and brought the hair line around his temples further down and in on both sides. I made the straggly hair ends straight above the left side eye go away, which I think gives his hairline a better flow. (God, I love this paper! It lets me REDO things.)

The other most noticeable change I think is, moving the left side of his mouth down and out a fraction. I moved the whole middle line of his mouth down too to make the top lip slightly wider and then widened and redefined his bottom lip too. I think I finally got the right look. Before it always seemed to me that his lips had a pouty look, now they seem more relaxed.

On his chin, I brought the shadow under his mouth down and broadened it out both ways. I also shaved a few millimeters of width from the bottom and right side of the chin and brought the bottom shadow up a bit. I think now the chin looks more in proportion, more Deanlike, less Jay Leno-ish. Or who knows, maybe now he looks more like Jay Leno. I don’t know anymore.

Actually, I do know one thing. I’m done with his face!!!!



Christmas Beer

I made this for a Christmas card exchange for one of my Supernatural lists. Based on what we have seen of a typical Winchester Christmas, they may or may not celebrate the day, depending on how caught up they are on a case.

But I like to think that Sam and Dean would  never allow it to go completely unacknowledged. Maybe even if it’s only stopping for a few moments on the side of a road on a cold wintry night, to wish each other good cheer with a Christmas beer.


Christmas Break!

Finally I will have time to work on the Dean portrait for more than a few snatched minutes at a time.

I have been working on him, but just haven’t posted any update photos lately. It didn’t feel like I had changed him much, just finished the background and refined his face and hair, but when I compare it to the last photo I posted, I realize it’s kind of a big change. I guess I should have been posting even my little updates..


I’ve been holding off finishing his left shoulder because I’ve been tinkering with his face and hair and didn’t want to worry about smearing the color under my right hand as I worked.

I added more color to his face, warmed it up. He had been looking kind of pallid, though it was hard for me to see it. I noticed it all of a sudden one day after not looking at the portrait for a while. I also darkened his hair.

Finishing the background and his right shoulder and adding more color overall, I’ve managed to cover up a lot more of the yellow toned background, which I think is a good thing.

Well, with any luck, I should be finishing this over the next few weeks, so stay tuned.

An Interesting Exercise

I was at my sketchbook the other day practicing and doodling on my favorite subject, the Winchester boys, of course. I usually do a lot of figure studies and action poses of both of them, while my mind invents little stories to go with the drawings. Ah, no, I not obsessed. It’s just very relaxing and fun 🙂

Anyway, I also practice drawing their faces a lot, because that’s how drawing skills are improved and with this subject matter, I never get bored. I’ve always noticed that I have a lot harder time drawing Dean than Sam, so tend to draw him more often, just to get in more practice. Anyway I got caught up doing a Dean sketch that turned into a more elaborate portrait of him that I originally intended. I was jazzed because I thought I had done a good job on this freehand drawing. I hadn’t even used grid lines on my reference to judge proportions,  just depended on my eye to block out his face and then shade it in a bit. After a good half hour or so I proudly went off to show my husband.  He stared at it a bit and I got the sense that he wasn’t seeing the perfect Dean drawing I was seeing.  So I prodded and he finally admitted that it looked more like David Hasselhoff than Dean Winchester.I was kind of horrified and eventually wandered off disappointedly to study my drawing. At first I decided that hubby had no idea what he was talking about, but I also know that he is one of my most caring and honest critics and usually when I stop being irritated and take his advice, it is all for the better.This is what I showed him.


After spending some time trying to figure out if there was any truth to Marty’s assessment, I decided to call it a day, because the more I looked at it, the more it was looking like David Hasselhoff to me too.  I decided I had totally lost my objectivity and went off to do other things.

Still over the next few days, I kept coming back to peek at the drawing and yup, I could see it more clearly every time, Hasselhoff, not Winchester. It bothered me to no end, because even though I could acknowledge the lack of proper likeness, I could not figure out where I went wrong. The proportions seemed right, even after doing a more careful study of lines and spaces. They all seemed to be in the right place, but still it was freaking Hasselhoff, not Dean!

It finally occurred to me how to truly check my proportions on the drawing. I scanned my reference image and my drawing and then opened both files in photoshop. In the drawing file I created another layer and copied the reference image onto it. I then created a third transparent layer on top of the reference drawing and onto this one I traced out a contour line of Dean’s face directly from the image.

Once this was done I hid the layer with the reference image so I could see the traced line drawing directly over my pencil drawing. I used the transform tool to fit the line contour as closely as possible to my drawing. This is what I saw.


I was happy to see that my drawing was not too far off from the true proportions of the reference image. But there were enough subtle differences to kill a good likeness.

Probably the most important differences in my drawing were a larger jaw, a cheekbone that didn’t taper enough and the nose slightly smaller. Also his left eye was placed slightly higher than where is should have been. Less important were that the the back  and top of his head were too big and his ear set back a little too much, but still adding up enough to make a DH instead of a DW.

Here is a closer look.


Now I had a roadmap for making changes to my original drawing. I went back to it and started erasing and redrawing lines. Once the new proportions were in spent some more time shading and smoothing out lines.

This is the reworked drawing.


Yay! It looks like Dean. At least I think so. Hubby still thinks it looks like David H. ARRGHHHH!

You be the judge.


Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑