Painting a Realistic Watercolor Portrait in Procreate: From Sketch to Final Piece | Lettie Blue | Skillshare

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Painting a Realistic Watercolor Portrait in Procreate: From Sketch to Final Piece

teacher avatar Lettie Blue, Architect & Digital Illustrator

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

13 Lessons (2h 7m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Reference Image

    • 3. Sketching

    • 4. Value Study

    • 5. Color Palette

    • 6. Masking Fluid

    • 7. Glazing

    • 8. Aged Skin

    • 9. Layering Colors

    • 10. Adding Blue

    • 11. Painting Fabric

    • 12. Painting Hair

    • 13. Finishing Touches

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About This Class

Painting a realistic portrait is much more than creating a well proportioned sketch and using a beautiful color palette. Our goal is to capture the likeness and character of a subject.


My name is Lettie, I studied Architecture and I’ve been an illustrator since 2012.

I’ve worked on a wide range of projects from architectural designs to video games, to children’s books, websites, I sell my illustrations on print-on-demand sites and, currently, I am combining my illustrator work with teaching digital art... I think it's worth the effort to take on new challenges and keep evolving. And today, is a good day for a new challenge! Yes, today we are going to paint a realistic watercolor portrait in Procreate. I know it can be intimidating, but I will walk you through all my process.

We will start learning how to choose a good reference image. We’ll talk about the importance of lighting and contrast. 

Afterwards, we will use the Loomis method to simplify the head into basic forms. We will learn how to make a value study in a traditional and in a digital way, understand the properties of color and several methods to create the perfect color palette.

Next, we will talk about digital watercolors. Since the techniques and process will be the same than with real watercolors, you will be able to do this digitally or traditionally. The choice is yours!

Finally, we will start painting our portrait. I’ll share with you tips on how to paint skin, eyes, hair, fabric folds, texture, and much more.

I’ve included in the Resources section reference images, custom brushes, color palettes, procreate files… everything you need to start painting your portrait. 

Basic knowledge of Procreate is recommended but not required to take this class. Having said that, let’s get started!

Meet Your Teacher

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Lettie Blue

Architect & Digital Illustrator


Here you will find my most comprehensive Procreate classes. They will take you from Procreate beginner to master in a few days. Each class is designed to teach you all the essential tools and techniques needed to master Procreate. You can watch the classes in order or jump into the specific tool or feature you want to learn more about. The choice is yours!

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1. Introduction: Painting a realistic portrait is much more than creating a well proportioned sketch and using a beautiful color palette. Our goal is to capture the likeness and character of a subject. My name is Lettie. I studied architecture and I've been an illustrators since 2012. I've worked on a wide range of projects from architectural designs, to video games, to children's books, websites... I sell my illustrations on print-on-demand sites. And currently, and I am combining my illustrator work with teaching digital art. I think it's worth the effort to take on new challenges and keep evolving. And today is a good day for a new challenge! Yes, today we are going to paint a realistic watercolor portrait in Procreate. I know it can be intimidating, but I will walk you through my entire process. We will start learning how to choose a good reference image. We'll talk about the importance of lighting and contrast. Afterward, we will use the Loomis method to simplify the head into basic forms. We will learn how to make a value study in a traditional and digital way, understand the properties of color, and several methods to create the perfect color palette. Next, we will talk about digital watercolors. Since the techniques and process will be the same as with real watercolors, you will be able to do this digitally or traditionally, the choice is yours. Finally, we will start painting our portrait. I'll share with you tips on how to paint skin, eyes, hair, fabric folds, texture, and much more. I've included in the resources section, reference images, custom brushes, color palettes, Procreate files, everything you need to start painting your portrait! So grab your iPad, open Procreate, and let's have some fun. 2. Reference Image: Is a good photo the same as a good reference photo? Well, sometimes it is not, especially if we haven't a deep knowledge of the subject matter or we have never drawn it before. There are a few things we have to pay attention to when we are looking for the perfect reference. I will start with the most important for me, the lighting. It's way easier to work with a photo we can tell where the light is coming from, than with one that it's hard to tell. If we are beginners and we don't know much about the anatomy of the face, well-defined shadows can help us draw the shape and features of our subject accurately. Contrast between light and dark is what gives the illusion of volume. The face of the girl with the lollipop looks flat, right? That's because there is not enough contrast. When that happens, the edges and details become difficult to perceive. And if they are difficult to perceive, they are difficult to draw, especially when we are in a learning stage. The higher the contrast between highlight and shadow areas, the easiest will be to replicate this subject on our canvas. On the left picture, we can clearly see the bridge and the tip of the nose, the philtrum, the cheekbones, etc. But what about the right picture? When the light is placed in front of the subject, the contrast is minimal. If we chose these kind of images, we will have to work harder to add a sense of depth to our drawing. So if you want to start drawing portraits, I recommend choosing a photo like the left one, in which the light that comes from one side emphasizes the contours and dimension of the subject. As I said before, it's important to clearly see what you want to paint. If you want to paint a very detailed skin, for example, you will need to choose a photo in which you can see the pores, little hair, veins... The texture of the skin. If you want to paint the whole head, try not to choose cropped photos or you will have to guess how to draw the missing parts. The same for blurry photos, or photos with some parts out of focus. Does this mean that we can't use those kind of photos as a reference? Not at all but, you know, it will be more difficult for you to get an accurate sketch, add depth and reproduce the texture and other details. Well, unless you have painted a lot of portraits already. In that case, you can fill those gaps with your imagination and experience. Also, choose a photo that captivates you. Because of the color palette, the lighting, the subject... The thing is, don't choose any photo just to follow this tutorial. If you love the photo, you will not only find the learning process more enjoyable, but also you will be willing to put more effort into getting it right and won't give up easily. So, first step! Choose a good reference image. Well lit and crisp. And import it into Procreate. There are many different ways to import an image into Procreate, but if we want to work with a specific canvas size, I recommend creating the canvas first. And then go to Actions> Add> Insert a photo. Since Procreate 5x, we can also insert a private photo, going to Actions>Add and swiping to the left here and tapping on Insert a private photo. If you open the layer panel, you will see that layer has written 'Private' below the name of the layer. That means that everything that is in that layer, and everything you paint in it, will not appear in the time-lapse video. Many people will use this tool to trace images. We are not going to talk about if tracing is good or bad right now because it is a long debate, but this tool can be used for much more than that. For example, to write notes about steps you're taking to paint on illustration, the process you are using, the colors... We can also try there a color combination that we are not sure if it is going to work, but we don't want it to appear on the time-lapse video. We can use that layer for drawing the grids we need for creating our lettering works. Basically, we can use it for everything we don't need to be recorded as a part of our painting process. Another way we can import an image since Procreate 5x is to import it as a reference, going to Actions>Canvas. And then Reference. By default we'll see a screenshot of our canvas, but if we tap on 'Image', we can import an image. We can move this little screen, dragging it from the top, zoom in and zoom out using the pinch gesture. And also, if we tap anywhere on the little screen, we can import in different image. To close this window, simply tap on the X. This tool is super useful for drawing fine details. We no longer need to work on a split view, copy and paste a part of our reference image to place it closer to the area we are painting, zoom in and zoom out constantly to see the whole picture, etc. I will use this amazing photo taken by Rashid Sadykov. You will find it on Resources. Of course, you are free to use a different photo, but you will get the most out of this step-by-step tutorial if you use the same photo as me, at least the first time you watch it. Well, now that we have a good photo to work with, in the next video, we will start sketching our portrait. 3. Sketching: Grids, basic shapes, reference lines... There are many different methods to create an accurate sketch, but in this video, we will use the Loomis method. In his book Mr. Loomis, show us how to draw a head from any angle. So let's pick our favorite sketching brush and take the first step, which is to draw a circle as wide as the head, and an oval for the flat part of the cranium. Draw a line dividing the face plane into two parts. And, using the oval as a reference, make parallel lines. In the middle of the oval, we will draw the eyebrow line. At the top, the forehead, at the bottom, the bottom of the nose. And, at the same distance, the line for the chin. Halfway between the top of the head and the chin, we will draw the eyes. So let's make another line there. Now that we know where everything has to be, it scientists started sketching the facial features. But remember, we are making a rough sketch. It is totally forbidden to hold the pencil close to the tip. This way, we won't be tempted to add detail to it. Okay. Open the Layers panel and tap on the 'N' of your 'Rough Sketch' layer. Decrease the opacity of the layer and create a new layer on top, tapping on the plus sign. Tap on the layer and rename it. We'll name it 'Pencil Drawing'. In this layer, we are going to create a more polished version of our previous sketch. Now, you can hold your pencil closet to the tip if you want to. Well, except for drawing the hair and the beard. Because if you hold it too close to the tip, you'll lines will look stiff. I recommend given this ago, but you can download from the Resources section, my rough sketch, if you want to create your watercolor illustration from it. Once you're happy with your sketch, turn off the rough sketch layer. We no longer need it. At this point, we could start adding color to our illustration. But for those of you who find it hard to see where the light and shadows must be painted. In the next video, we will talk briefly about the properties of color and make a value study. 4. Value Study: In this video, we will learn how to make a value study. But before diving into that, we need to understand the properties of color. As you probably know, Valley is a property of color, and it refers to how dark or light and color is. If we go to adjustments and tap on hue, saturation, brightness, we will understand all the properties of color at once. Here we can see different hues or colors. Here, we can go from fully saturated color or pure color to fully desaturated color or gray. In here, we control the lightness or darkness of the color. Adding white, we make the color lighter. And add in black, we make the color darker. Easy, right? Well, the problem is that all of us perceive colors differently. And colors look more or less saturated or more or less brighter. Depending on the surrounding colors. Eye color can seem lighter when it is placed next to a darker color. Yellow usually seems to be brighter than other colors. And sometimes it looks brighter, but it is not. That's why creating realistic illustrations take us a lot of time and practice. We have to learn to see what we have in front of us in a different light. Or as many people say, we have to learn to see like an artist. Luckily for us when we paint digitally, we have many tools that can help us with this lighter color picker tool, which allows us to compare colors easily. The blend modes, they hue, saturation, brightness panel, et cetera. In school we use to wind at wherever we want to draw, tried to distinguish among delighters, the dark is on the darkest areas. I'm blocking those areas on the canvas. In Procreate things to the blend modes, we can do a value study without squinting our eyes and even without using our pencil. But in order to learn to see like an artist and get better on drawing, we need to be able to determine where the light or the dominant light is coming from and identify the darkest and lightest areas on anything. So we will do it the old-fashioned way. First. Law, we go create a new layer and name it values study, observed the reference photo. You may find it difficult to distinguish among all the different values, but you see where the lightest light and the darkest dark areas are, right? Then start darkening your sketch and don't apply paint where you see the image is lighter. Darken the areas progressively. Keep in mind that only a few small areas will be completely black. So avoids a plane too much pressure with your pencil or many layers of paint on top of each other at the beginning. Okay. Take your time. Look at the reference photo and compare it continuously with your drawing. Use the eraser if necessary. Drawing lightened shadow is essential for creating the illusion of volume. If you struggled to get the value study done, get rid of the color. We can easily do that by going to hue saturation brightness and setting the saturation to none. I do not recommend making permanent changes to our reference image. So what I usually do is to use blend modes instead. Create a new layer on top and fill it with black. Tap on the end to open the blend modes many, and change the blend mode to color. What this blend mode does is to preserve the values of the reference image and adopted hue and saturation of the blend layer. As our blend layer is filled with pure black, the result is a gray scale image. If you still don't see clearly where the different values are, duplicate the reference image, and change its blend mode to overlay. What this blend mode does is lightened the light areas and dark in the dark areas. You can duplicate this layer as many times as you need. We'll simplify the values of the image and that will help you see the light and dark areas easily. Finally, to make these look like traditional art, let's add a paper texture in a new layer. I will use one of my paper texture brushes. You will find me Tom resources. In the next video, we will learn two different methods for creating custom color palette. 5. Color Palette: In this video, we will learn how to create a color palette manually, using the color picker tool. Automatically using an image or a file from our iPad. Decrease the opacity of the value study and pencil drawing lanes. Set it quite low. We are going to start adding color and we don't want them to look darker than they really are. We will use the color picker tool to select from the reference image the different colors we see. To invoke these two, simply tap and hold your finger on the canvas. Airing will appear. Slide your finger across the screen and see how the color of the top of the ring changes. Leave your finger to select the current color. As you see, I've paint in a few small colored circles. I've used the monoline brush to place each color near the area I picketed from. This makes it easier to compare if we've chosen the right color for painting that area in our illustration. Tap and hold the visibility checkbox on the color palette layer to see only the swatches with created. Now we are ready to create our custom color palette. Tip. To create a custom color palette, follow these steps. One, tap on the color button and then on pallets, to tap on the plus sign. And then ONE, create a new pallet. An empty pallet will appear. Three, tap and hold with your finger on the canvas to invoke the color picker do for drag your finger over the color and lifted to select it. Five, tap on one of the empty spaces, just save that color. Six. Repeat the process with the rest of the colors. We will choose just one of the colors that look alike to incorporate it into our color palette. To work with the limited color palette is easier than to have to choose between many similar shades of blue. This is a color palette I've created. As you see, I added a few colors that I see on the image, but I couldn't pick with the color picker. Keep in mind that Procreate is a recipe program and where we see just one color. There are actually many. So oftentimes we will need to trust our eyes to pick the right color. I think the color palette should be more limited. So I will try not to use all the colors I picked. You will find this color palette and a more limited one on resources, but I highly recommend trying to create your own. Now, as promised, let's see how we can create a custom color palette in no time and effortlessly on pallets, tap on the plus sign. And now instead of tapping on create a new palette, choose any of the other options and procreate will do all the work for you. In this case, we will tap on new from photos and choose our reference image and water. Here we have the new palette. This palette has many more colors than the one we created many Ali, as we don't know where the AP them from, it is more difficult to apply the right color in the right place. Besides, many of them are pretty similar unless limited than the ones we choose. So for painting a realistic illustration, I recommend creating our palette is in the first method. Okay, reference image, sketch via study and color palette. We have all we need to start adding watercolors. So in the next video, we will open the bottle of masking fluid and cover the areas that we don't want to Pinto. 6. Masking Fluid: When we create traditional watercolors, we usually use masking fluid to preserve the white paper where we don't want paint. When we create digital watercolors, we use layer masks. So that's exactly what we are going to do in this video. As I said before, blend modes can help us see where the highlights and shadows are by increasing contrast between light and dark colors. If we duplicate our image and change the blend mode to color burn, we will see easily the areas that we need to mask. That color off the masking fluid is not important as long as weekend see it. So choose any color you want. Pick a brush. I will use my bumble multipurpose brush. You can download it from the resources section. Before diving into masking, Let's see how this brush works to get the most of it. It is pressure and tilde sensitive, which means that it will behave differently depending on the pressure we apply. The angle of the pencil. In this case, the harder the pressure, the larger the brush and the more opaque the result, as you see the edge also varies with pressure from soft to hard. Tilt your pencil this way and paint. You'll see the brush behaves differently. We will till the pencil to get a smoother transitions and blend colors easily. At the beginning of the stroke, we get paint as if we had deep a wet brush into watercolor paint. This allows us to greed very light washes just going over the paint, applying low pressure. Also, the pain will build up each time we lived our pencil and paint again as if we were keeping the brush into the bait. This allows us to have better control when painting details. We will use these brush to create, let's say, a kind of at digital masking fluid. We are not only going to use it to preserve the white of the paper, but also to create this molar transitions around it. We are going to apply masking fluid, progressively, adding more in the areas we don't want paint. Okay. Once we have covered the desired areas, we will create a new layer, change its blend mode to Linear Burn, select the content of the masking fluid layer by tapping and holding on it with giving those create a layer mask with that selection. And finally, tap on invert. Say what selection layer mask Invert. I just lost you, right? Let me add paint to the new layer to explain this. I'll use the selection tool to speed this up. Our layer mask is a layer that we attached to another layer to hide parts of it without using the eraser. In this case, the parts we want to be hidden are the ones we just painting with our masking fluid. So what we just did was to see those parts and create a layer mask with them. If we rub off the masking fluid by turning off the visibility of the masking fluid layer with the magic. Well, okay, it's not magic, but it's cool, right? We can add more paint and the white areas will remain white. Add more masking fluid by painting in the layer mask with black. And make some pain disappear in the white areas by painting in the layer mask with what we've applied. Masking fluid first, because we are mimicking traditional watercolors workflow. But since these are digital watercolors, weekend create and modify a layer mask anytime. Now that we know how to mask in Procreate, Let's apply masking fluid through our sketch. Create a new layer, name it, masking fluid. And paint the light areas applying low pressure and the highlights, applying more pressure or adding more layers of paint. If the masking fluid layer looks too transparent, you can duplicate the layer a few times and then merge them to make the paint more opaque. Once you finish, create a new layer, name it, wash one, and attach the layer mask to it following the same steps we did before, select the layer contents of the masking fluid layer, tap on the wash, one layer, create a mask, and finally tap on invert. Once we have done that, if we turn off the visibility of the masking fluid layer, it looks like we haven't done anything, right. But when we paint on the layer that has the layer mask attached, we see that they must areas other. So let's clear this because in the next video, we will make lots of washes to create realistic looking scheme. 7. Glazing: What we're going to do now is to lay down several washes of watercolor on top of each other. This technique is called glazing, and in this video we will learn how to do it digitally as we do when we use traditional watercolors, we will work from light to dark. Yes, this will take a lot of time, but at least since we are going to use digital watercolors, we won't have to wait for layers to dry. What is a watercolor wash? As I said before, we are going to paint many warships. But what is a watercolor wash? Watercolor wash is a semi-transparent layer of color in which no individual brushstrokes are visible. There are three main types of watercolor washes, flat, graded and variegated. A flat wash has a uniform hue and value. A graded wash has a uniform hue, but each value changes gradually from light to dark and vice versa. A variegated wash has different keys and valleys. This wash is used when we need to transition from one to another that you use will combine where they meet. What is glazing? Glazing is a wet-on-dry technique that consists of overlaying washes. When we paint several washes on top of each other, letting them dry completely before applying the next wash, we are glazing. And how exactly we can do this digitally? Well, using layers. As we saw in the previous video, this brush at Spain when we press hard and pulls paint and add sweater with light pressure. Well, it does not add water, but it looks nicer, right? Using this brush, we will keep the paper down as long as we paint in the same layer. So if we don't add too much pressure and add pained progressively, we will be able to blend it with no problem. As soon as we create a new layer on top and paint, the paint of the other layer will look as if it were completely dry. And this is how we work with the glazing technique in Procreate. Okay, let's put all this knowledge into practice. Select the lighter color of your color palette. Make sure you have selected as your primary layer wash one, not the layer mask. The primary layer, also called active layer, will appear in the layers panel as bright blue. And this is where our drawings will appear. We can only have one primary layer at a time, but we can have more than one layer. Selected. Secondary layers will appear muted blue and will be temporarily associated to the primary layer. Certain actions like selection transform, delete will affect all of those layers at once. Star Painting, applying light pressure. Look at the photo reference and add more paint by adding more pressure or by lifting your pencil and then going over the same area repeatedly. Compare your painting with the 40 continuously. Remember that we also have available and the razor on it's much too. So use them if you need them. And if you don't like the result, just undo it by tapping with two fingers on the screen. Let's see how to paint wrinkles. Well, let's finish the news first. Okay, decrease the brush size in paint lines following the deep wrinkle lines, but don't make well-defined lines. But lions that are more opaque in the middle and blurry or more transparent on the edges. As you see, what I do is to add more pressure when drawing the line with very light pressure, go over that line and I repeat the process again and again until a slight sense of volume. Hold the pencil to make thin lines on how to blend those lines. With light pressure. I will paint also the highlighted areas. It will look better if you add more layers of progressively, rather than adding a lot of paint and then trying to spread all over the face. Add more paint in the areas in shadow. We will repeatedly apply paint on the same areas in order to create depth to our painting. And we will do that, but overlapping layers and more layers of different hues. This means that we will build our painting from the bottom up. First with large blocks of color and then with smaller blocks to gradually add details. Don't forget to change the blend mode of your watercolor layers to linear burn or multiply to enhance the paper texture. What's the change, right? I will also increase the opacity of the value study so I can see better the areas in shadow and add more paint to them. Don't be afraid of using the razor the same way we use a clean brush for lifting some paint when using traditional watercolors. In fact, in this case, we will be able to live all the pain we need even if we painted it just a day or a week ago. Well, what I am doing now is going over the wrinkles and the darkest areas. And I am adding more paint to those areas. As you see, the white part of the eyes of these man is not white. I would say it has many colors, but wind. So let's add to both of them light layer of this pinkish tan that we are using right now. When painting. Keeping in mind that if the form changes, damage or flight that it receives vary as well. For example, if we take a look at his lower leaves, we will see several budgets. Since the light is coming from above, the upper part of those budgets will receive more light down the lower part. So we need to copy that in our painting by adding more paint to the areas in shadow. I'm creating a soft transition between them and the late areas. This hard edge is caused by my layer mask. You can keep it if you like it. But I will use in this much tool. I will continue working on these. You can watch me finish painting this first layer or join me in the next video where we are going to start painting. As we said before, the white of the eye is not White. So let's add some pink here too. I prefer to play as a photos side-by-side because it is easier to see if I am doing a good job in terms of general proportions, colors and shadows. But don't forget that. You can also use the reference companion window to avoid cimetidine and out continuously when painted, especially when painting a specific area. Okay. Remember how important contrast is to recreate the illusion of volume. So make sure you add more color to the areas in Chatter. How much? Well, since we are using a very light base color and we are trying to add the same amount of paint everywhere. It will be difficult to add too much. So no pressure. Again, besides the masking fluid we applied previously will help us keep the highlighted areas clear. Don't forget to paint the mouth. Make this shadow here is very dark. But as always, if we go from light to dark, the result will be better than if we just add only a dark color. He's forehead wrinkles, neat, more paint to make them look deeper. How is it looking? Our poetry begins to take shape. I'll have first wash is done. Now we are ready to start painting. 8. Aged Skin: Now that our first wash and dry heat sensors dark paint in the second one. But in this video we are not only going to paint the second wash, we will also talk about layers, wrinkles, and bananas. Let's get to it. Choose this brownish color. Duplicate the wash one layer, change its name to wash, to him, tap Clear to get rid of the delay or content. This way we don't have to apply the masking fluid again to the new layer. It is already there. When we duplicate a layer that has a layer mask attached to it, we also duplicate the layer mask. Painting using more than one layer is great because we can pay anything we want and it will not affect what we have in overlays. I can make a scribble and make it disappear by simply tapping on the visibility checkbox. I can make it less opaque or change its color underlay willow want suffer the consequences. What I mean by always is that I recommend working with layers always. Okay, Well, let's zoom in and see what areas we need to paint with this color. Here, in here, in gear. And also here, well, many areas. So let's do it. I will start here as I go adding more paint and these darker tone all around the vein, we can see how it starts looking in 3D, right? Just be careful, don't apply this same amount of paint everywhere. As I told you in the previous video, always bear in mind that he doesn't have firm on a Smith skin. But aged skin. As we grow older, we lose elastin and that cause the skin to hang loosely and wrinkle. Also the surface layer of the skin. Epidermis becomes thinner. Because it becomes thinner, this game becomes more transparent. I'm fragile. We also lose fat below the skin in the chicks, temples gene news and area. Since our skin becomes thinner, fragile and soggy, our veins and bones can be seen more easily. It is more easily bruised and those bruises can take forever to heal. Age spots and skin tags appear, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. Yeah, this could be fun to paint, but and it is not so fun when that happens through our skin, right? Well, the thing is that we will have to recreate all of that in we want our painting to leak realistic. If you find it difficult to shade the facial features, tried to simplify them into basic forms or into something you know how to shade. For example, the shape of the bowl gene islet fat pad might remind us of that banana. In fact, we can imagine Bananas of different sizes all over his phrase, we just need to shade lower part and since the upper part received small light, we will add all leave it with no paint. I need to go to the layer mask. Use this much tool to soften these part. Now it looks better. So let's go back to the second wash layer and continue adding watercolor. We may find me difficult to shade the nose, but we simplify it into two spheres on a cylinder, it is way easier, right? Don't forget about the reflected light. If we add the same amount of paint to everything, then News will look flat. He also has a cyst. Of course we can get rid of that small round bump, but I prefer to paint it to the more detail we add to our painting, the more realistic we'll look. This much tool to create a smooth transition between the light and shadow areas. As you've seen, the loss of the cartilage in the news causes a nasal t and the accentuation of the bony structure. These side of the face illuminated done the other one. So we will add more layers of paint to it. By doing these, we will also SN two bony structure. If you need help with your shading, increase the opacity of the study. Or take a look at your modified and the saturated reference image. Don't be afraid of using the eraser tools whenever you need. But be careful with this much tool. It can be addictive and if you use it too much, you will lose texture. Let me finish shading there bananas of the side of the phase before jumping into the forehead. Since this part of the phase is less illuminated, let's paint a light, wash all over it. My digital masking fluid is too opaque here. I am going to use the smudge tool to decrease contrast. We don't want our areas and shadow to have brighter highlights, the underlaid areas. Okay. I will repeat the same steps I did with the previous color. Add more pressure when drawing the land. Then with light pressure, go over it again and again until I achieve a sense of volume. We can imagine that the forehead is a mountain range segmented by high lens on one side of the mountain is illuminated. Deal that one is in shadow. And that's mountain casts a shadow over the valley. Mountain. The same happens with his forehead wrinkles. Let's start in the mouth on top of each other with this color. As we said before, we will darken everything progressively. I'm applying light pressure, so no rush it. Okay. This game pores are quite feasible in his forehead. Biosynthetic reason the brush size and tapping on the screen. Let's increase this a little bit. Decrease the opacity. We are going to apply more washes some of these layer, often the appearance of the pools. But if you want, you can also use this much tool, many visible pores. So let's bend them too. In the next video, we will continue adding to our portrait. We will realize that we will need to use colors like brown to make lifelike scheme. 9. Layering Colors: When we were kids, we used to use only one color to paint the skin. It can be pink, orange brown, black, green if the character was sick, RNA and not anymore. Give your eyes peeled. Because in this video we are going to use many different colors to bring the scale of our center. It creates a new layer and name it, wash three. Don't forget to change the blend mode to Linear Burn. Go to the color palette and select the pink color. I see a lot of different colors in many different parts of his face, but I see pink all over it. So I will cover his whole face with a very light pink wash. Let's increase the brush size o these will take us forever. There's will look like if we have applied a pink filter to our painting. We have to do this by applying very light pressure and Tilton depends on, again. Now, we are going to decrease the brush size and work on detail. We will add more paint over the areas in shadow. We didn't attach a layer mask to this layer. So now we can paint over the lightest areas. Stock reads in a gradual transition from light to shadow. You see what we are doing is to repeat this same process again and again on different layers with different colors. And as we add more and more layers of paint, their face looks more and more three-dimensional. Perhaps you think that the colors we are using are too saturated or not as you well-respected. Do not worry about that right now. They will look different once we add all the layers of paint needed to make this look like a real watercolor arguing. And in any case, as we are working with many layers, we can easily modify the opacity or the color of each layer independently. Next, color, I see some areas that we need to cover with ocher here. And over here. You can see them, right? Well, maybe you see a different color it so just added to your color palette in a new layer, we will carefully paint those occur areas everywhere we see them. The brushes we use, the pressure we apply, whether we work with one layer or with multiple layers. The blend mode, those layers are set to. Everything affects how our illustration looks, okay? In this case, since we are using a pressure sensitive brush, I'm applying low pressure. Let's paint looks quite transparent like a light wash with much more water than pigment. And since we are using a different layer color, it will look like if we were using wet on dry technique. That color will look different when added over white, darker areas, saturated areas, et cetera. If we were using just one layer for all the watercolor work, the colors will blend as if we were painting wet on wet. Okay. I see. Okay. You may be thinking there is no way this is going to end. Well, that I am creating some kind of Frankenstein monster with the pink face and yellow spots. Well, Painting Portraits is similar to adding makeup. If someone's takes the photo in the middle of the process, it won't look good. But when there is the right amount of products in the right spots, everything looks great. Okay, Next the color. Let's choose these pinkish orange. I forgot to name this layer. We're SHE poor, creates a new layer. Name it, wash five. Linear Burn. Okay, we are ready for the next Walsh. I see this salmon color all over his face and especially on this area. So I will start here as usual, tilted pencil and low pressure to cover big areas easily. Okay, let's take a look at his forehead. Yeah, I can see this color here too. So let's spend with it the valleys and the shaded areas of the mountains of his forehead. Low pressure and pencil more perpendicular to the screen to pay in the valleys. And also low pressure but tilted pencil for the shaded areas of the mountains. Remember that we are not using any masking fluid. So be careful and try not to cover the highlighted areas. If that happens to not worry, you can just use the razor or even creates a layer mask and just hide those parts as we did in the previous videos. Okay, I think this is looking good. Now, let's continue adding more volume to the banana. Bananas. What bananas? If you don't know what I am talking about, your escaping videos. I know the stakes a lot of time, but trust me, if you follow all the steps, the effort will be worth it. I am just darkening the dock is areas with these color needs to be more saddle here as well. And also some little details like the word he has. These one. It's difficult to perceive how much pressure I am applying. So whenever you watch me holding my pencil pretty far from the TPP, I will be mostly adding low pressure and covering bigger areas. For adding detail. I will hold it close to t. For example. Now I am making circular movements to represent the texture of the skin. See, the saddle, don't apply too much pressure. We didn't need to release too much pigment. If the circles are too visible, you can reduce their capacity by going over them, applying light pressure. You know, just the way you would do it with traditional watercolors. Yeah, you are right. We don't need to rinse the brass and get the perfect amount of water. But the result is similar. Okay, let's move on to painting the age spots and dark areas. Creates a new layer. Name it, wash six. Pick this color and zoom out to Z where we have to use these dark tone. Don't forget to change the blend mode to Linear Burn. And let's do this. I'll start painting the year. Then the cheek. This color is easier to notice in the reference image, right? Let's add more volume to the vein. That colors are more difficult to use because it's easy to go too dark in just one stroke. So try not to apply too much pressure. So often the lines, and if you feel like it is looking too dark, you can use the smudge tool, the eraser tool, or even decrease the layer opacity. We have many tools that can help us get the result we are looking for. Okay. Now let's work on the forehead wrinkles. Know that the makers of forehead wrinkles is the activity of the frontalis muscle. It sends that over time, not only the gravity and the skin laxity cause our skin to wrinkle, but also they excess of motion. How often do you use your frontalis muscle or what is the same? How often do you elevate your eyebrows? Sure you are doing in running now. I'm, I run, I do it continuously. So my scheme will look like a raisin Zoom. Anyway, let's use this color to add depth to the eye and its surroundings. As I said before, when using very dark colors, we always worry about going too dark. Let's see how we can stop worrying about that. T-shapes. One, darken the area progressively. What I mean is try not to finish a small part of your drawing at once, even if you know that that area is very dark, dark in the area little bit and work on the surroundings, darken it a little bit more. And again, work around the dark area. If the color is too dark, change it. For example, here, I need to go to the previous on the previous color. Again, on these areas. Can you notice the difference? Now, I can continue working with the dark brown color again. And the second tip is use a different layer per color, or at least use three layers. One for the base color, another for the shadows. I'm another one for the highlights. Why? Well, because this way, if you went too dark everywhere, you can sort the problem out by simply reducing the opacity of that layer. And if only a small part is the problem, you can use a layer mask to decrease the opacity of that part. In both cases won't be affected. I will just make the wrinkles look deeper. In this case, I am using the paint tool for making the wrinkle lines and then the smudge tool to blend them a little bit. Actually, there are no sharp lines on our faces. It's just the way we use to simplify what we see. But in this tutorial, we are learning how to paint a realistic portrait. So if we draw our lines, they will draw a lot of attention to them and break the illusion of depth. Since I will repeat this same process with all their ring guanines and I don't want to bore you. Let's jump forward a bit. This is all the paint I added with this color. I just isolated these layer for you to see it better. And this is how my portrait is looking so far. I've included my procreate file on resources. So you can take a closer look at all the layers, okay, when you're ready, join me in the next video where we are going to start painting the eyes and adding blue everywhere. 10. Adding Blue: We tend to use black to paint channels, but the color of a shadow depends on the color of the light that hits the subject we are painting. In our case, he's outdoors on a sunny day. The one light from the sun is blocked from the shadow area. However, the shadow area is lit by the blue sky and the reflected light from the surrounding elements. Hence the blue bluish shadows. So let's start adding blue everywhere. Create a new layer and name it wash seven. Let's choose this light blue first. We will use a darker tone later. But remember that we are working from light to dark as we do when we use traditional watercolors. As usual, I forgot to change the blend mode to Linear Burn. Again. Here we go to pain. The IDs is not an easy task. We often painted too big or too small. Keep in mind that the ice is half the size of the eyeball and the pupil is 1 third of the iris, although it gets bigger in the dark to let more light in. Also, the iris is only a perfect circle from the front view and it becomes an oval. When we turn to the side. Both files should look at the same place. But we often plays both eyes is close to the news. Or one leg straight and the other to one side. And that makes the person look crossed eyes. There are different ways to get better at drawing eyes. And the most important one, in my opinion, is to paint many eyes and paint them in pairs. All phases have two eyes. So why do we always paint just one eye? Although I especially see blue around the eyes. That's not the only part of the phase. We will add Bluetooth. We will also use blue in many other places, not only because there is blue everywhere on the reference image, but also because in general, colors of the areas in shadow are less saturated and move closer to a bluish term. In this case blue. And the colors we used for painting the skin which were pink, salmon occur, etc, are found on opposite sides of the color wheel. So we will boost contrast, you see in blue next to those colors. And we will get more natural-looking neutral tones for our shadows. Mix some blue with those pigments. And now is when you ask, why is that so? Well, what happens when we mix together? Complementary colors are colors that are on opposite sides of the color wheel, is that they change the hue and attenuate the brightness and saturate the resulting color. As you see, the result will be add darker, neutral color. But how the saturated it is depends on the amount of pigment we add to the mix. Now let's start adding blue all around. Let's make the size of this brush. To do these FASTA. Let's decrease the size here. What's a beautiful contrast, right? Once we have made them blue everywhere, next, continue. This diode will use these dark blue. Don't forget to create a new layer. She 8. And change the blend mode to Linear Burn. Let's finish the eyes. I will not add a lot of details to the pupils. I will just emphasize the limbus. I'm done. Limbus is a Latin word meaning Boulder. And that sucks sadly, what they say is the bolded between the cornea and the sclera. Okay. I will also use these darker turn to paint the shadow cast by the APA islets. Be careful, do not cover the entire iris with blue. We need the highlights to remain white. Well, I think this looks good. So let's jump into painting their hat. The hat is very dark, but as always, we will add more and more paint progressively. We will start painting the darkest part. The way we move the pencil is really important. Many people get discouraged when painting because they always move the pencil in the same direction or just randomly. Without thinking about the Finnish or the texture we are aiming for. If we want something to look curved, we need to move our pencil in that direction. If we want something to look spiky, we will have to zigzag. We want to get a smooth result with no texture or berries saddled text, sir, We will have to go over the same area a few times up high and low pressure and changing the direction of our strokes or making small circular movements. Most times we need to combine different types of strokes. In this case, we need to make curved strokes to get the overall shape of the hat inscrutable to convey the texture of the fabric. It is also important the pressure and applied the brush chosen on the size of the brush. As you see, Dan even edge of these brush, help us get there. Whoo, texture with no effort. If we had to send a brush with an even edge, we would have had to make shaky lines to get the same texture. Now I will decrease the brush size to create some fossils, broken fibers, and all the little details. Don't forget how important legal details are. Unrealistic maintenance, the wool hand is done. So in the next video, we are going to focus on painting that denim jacket. 11. Painting Fabric: Painting fabric may seem complicated, but actually the process is quite similar to paint in wrinkles. It's all about observing and copy the highlights, meters and shadows. Let's see some examples. Does this remind you of something? This reminds me of the forehead wrinkles we painted in the previous videos. The color and texture are different, but they highlighted form shadows cast, shadows are almost identical, right? So we already know how to paint folds in fabric. What about the texture of the fabric? Well, as we already did with the texture of the skin, we have to design the level of detail we want to reproduce. G12 pain, every single fiber, a few lines, or just the overall shape. The choice is yours. But keep in mind that everything you paint should have the same level of detail unless you want something to be outlined against the rest. As we said in the previous videos, it's important to lay down our light colors first and work towards the darker colors. We've already laid down our base color. So let's start darkening the darkest areas. As usual, compare what you are doing with the reference image. If there is a gradual transition between the lit areas and the areas in shadow, we will try to mimic flat by varying the pressure, applying several layers of pigment and using this much tool. We already know that we can use one of these methods or combine them all. As long as a result looks good, it doesn't matter. Can you see the sharp transition between the lapel and the rest of the jacket. Where we see sharp transitions, we will create more defined edges. If all you can see is dark blue everywhere, don't get discouraged. Sometimes it is not easy to see these transitions, especially when the color of the fabric is dark. When we don't see clearly what is happening, we have to use our knowledge. Sharp transitions are usually caused by cast shadows. In this case, the lapel is casting a shadow over the front of the jacket. That shadow is what led us perceive that the lapel is on top of the rest. So it is important to add it to our painting. But there are more things happening here. The shadow is cast on a fold, not over a flat surface, so that we not only need to paint the cast shadow, but also the form shadow that makes that will be perceived as such. Sometimes similar happens with the color, but in this case, we also have more reflected light. So we will need to add less paint. Very dark. So we will add more pigment to it. Try not to add too much paint to the lightest areas of these parts. Okay. No. Or only a great contrast to see what is happening here. Casts a shadow over three folds. We will add more paint to, let's say, let's say the mountain folds as we bring goals in the previous videos. Not sure how large shoe that goes. So I will finish this part first by simply adding a little bit of detail. These looks much better, right? And we only drew a few Chris coastlines. Do you emulate that down in Texas on a few short lines, fold the stitches. This needs to be darker. I think I can spot a button. Maybe it says my imagination, but I see something that shines a little bit over here. I don't see clearly. So once more, I need to use my knowledge about buttons, which is unfortunately not much. So our circle will suffice. Let's add more detail to the left lapel. Not much though. Now, let's add volume to this fold. This is easier to pain than you thought right? At animal pain, lending is a busy. Let's add a little bit of detail to the right lapel too. His jacket way dark green the photo, but I think I prefer SET is right now EDCs here to appreciate all the work we've done. But by all means, if you like it darker, just continue darkening it. Progressive name. Oh, I almost forgot to paint the shirt. We only see a small piece of shirts, so these will be fast to diagonal lines. These two lines, blue shadow over the boldness. Need somebody to. Well, let's go to the previous layer. And the previous color. Simply pains a few more lines. Again, the neck is killing me. In order to save the shared needs more work or to look darker. We need to work on the neck first. I need to use brown now, so I will go to the wash six layer and choose brown. Everything I've painted on this layer is brown. So if I need to change the color later, I can select this layer and recolor it. It's some brown parts are not working. I can go to this layer and modify them or erase them without affecting the rest of the painting. Before the neck was painted, this shared looked unfinished, but after painting it, I think both look great. Painting fold so far it is not as difficult as we thought, right? Well, now that we feel more confident with what we are capable of painting, Let's jump into painting hair. 12. Painting Hair: In this video, I will show you the steps I take for painting her. Since it's centered, is wearing a hat, we will focus on painting the brands and the beard. We will learn that the stroke direction and the color variation are vital when working in a realistic manner. By the way, did you know that hair piece? Never just one color, not even white her let's take a look at his white beard. Do you see it completely white? I bet the answer is, not at all. Curtains white from a loss of melon. But there is not always a complete absence of melanin, which means that there is still a debate of color in that wide. Besides because of its porosity, it observes pigments from chemical products, the environment, what we eat, etc. Then result is that the hair of all of us has many shades of different colors. And if that were not enough, the colors that they heard absorbs and reflects when the light hits it are different, dependent on its own color. So that's why only sent us beer is completely white. My take is necessary. What I am doing now is laying down the colors. I see. They are mostly shadows of different colors. And we can also see he's faced through the beard. We don't need to paint individuals hairs to represent a beard. We can simply paint it as if it were a cloud. So the next step will be totally optional. But if we want to paint the individual hairs of a white beard, we need a background that is not white. Lean startup Jones will make the white hairs stand out. We can also see wisps of hair coming out of the hat. So we will also pain to add a few shadows here. The hair of the beard is wiring and tends to be quarterly. So it's signed to turn on this shaky line mode. Shaky and a squiggly lines will help us emulate the texture of his beard. We will work very carefully on the contour of the hair. We will never make solid hard edge lines around the pyramid 10, because as we said in the previous videos, that would instantly flatten it and detract our portrayed from realism. His eyebrows, her is also wiring, but it is curved instead of currently. So turn of the shaky line moved and turn on the curved lines one. Many of you have asked me how many layers I use when painting digitally. The answer is always outlet of them. Can we pain using only one layer? Absolutely. But we will get more easily frustrated whenever we need to change something. Especially when we are working on intricate designs. It takes time to get used to these method. It is completely normal that you forget to change the layer. Don't be hard on yourself. You will create a few messy paintings in the beginning. But after that, you will master working with layers. In any case, Let's try at different approach and work only with two layers instead of one per color. Create a new layer for painting all the colors of his beard and layered on, we will create another one for the whites. Painting individuals. Hers is incredibly time-consuming. So we will save some time using the fine hair brush that comes with procreate. We just need to make sure that our strokes flow in the same direction as the hair. I'm half the same length. Of course, if the hair goes straight or slightly curved, use flicking motions. And if it girls make SMC shapes. Move your hand in quick motions. Kind of randomly. Line variation is the key to creating interesting paintings. I think we need some more blue over here. By the way, you can turn off or play around with the opacity of the value study layer to add more or less contrast between highlights and shadows. Well, let's create a new layer for the white strokes. We need to make them in a different layer. Because if you try to paint them in a layer with linear burn, you won't be able to see a thing. You will think that you'll pencil suddenly stopped working. So new layer and normal blended. Okay. And copy the strokes you see in your reference image. Remember flicking motions. Slightly run them. Yes, as we did before, but with white design, there is not enough contrast, so we need to go to the previous layer on darken some areas of bait mole. I can see some dark brown strand over here. Let's pay them. Let's add some ocher here. I'm not sure if it's dysgenesis or false fact that my grandparents always argue about ways. My grandma likes to spray perfume all my grandpa's hair. She says, this way, he's heard smells nice and he's always complaining about it. He said, Don't make FADH woman that's turned in my hair yellow. It's funny that same conversation almost every day. Well, make some more brown strokes here and there. So more pink as well. Be white. Go to the white layer and choose the technical pen. We are going to add some individual news Harris like these ones. Also, we will ease smudge tool to make them fade out where they meet this game. You can even paint some more pores to add more realism. If you decide to paint them, don't forget to the positive of the brush. Or the pores will look like age spots or words. Okay. These rebellious hairs that stick out of the mass of the hair will give a more natural lip dollar poultry painting. Very positive. The brush as well. We don't see all the strands of hair with the same level of definition, right? As you see, I got lost adding details and I forgot to increase contrast. So let's go back to the other hair layer and darken some areas. Let's use the color picker tool to check the coda. We should use these when I choose the Bumble multipurpose brush and go over the darkest areas up high and low pressure. Part of the background, we definitely need more contrast here. As usual, since we are applying low pressure, we will need to go over some parts to make them darker. Let's use brown. I'm on little beads of salmon. Many brushes can be used for painting hair, such as the hemp or the twig. I recommend giving all of them ago and choose the one you like the most. We will use the tweet brush for painting the eyebrows. Let's use Braam first and make intersecting curved lines. Don't forget to lift your pencil off the gambits ad-Din in a quick flicking motion to allow the lines to taper away. It seems there are a few yellow strands of hair in shadow. So let's add some lines to go to the white hair. We are almost ready to save as many East. Well, yeah, as Socrates, we find difficult to say that. But that's because there is always something that can be improved with n dash of color here and there, followed by several undoes and some more colors and some extra details. Well, in the next video, I will do my best to finish the space. 13. Finishing Touches: In this area, we would try not to overwork this painting. So we will only paint the eyelashes, add a few highlights and darken some shadows. For painting the eyelashes, we are going to use the hemp rush because it doesn't create solid lines and is pressure sensitive, which allows us to create realistic looking eyelashes. Don't pain too many. They are hard to see on the reference image, but they are also draw some of them crossing in a V-shape. Eyelashes tend to do that. Let's add some highlights here. Now let's change the brush to create less defined the highlights. Once again, don't apply too much pressure. It is preferable to go over the same area a few times to make it loop wire, okay? If we add, the word will look more rounded. Let's see, loops do much. We will need to use this much to spend to. We can also make some tiny dots to add texture to the skin. As usual, use this much tool to blend them with the rest. Finally, go to the hair layer. This color, we are going to darken even more the areas in shadow. To increase contrast and get a greater sense of depth. I need to use a razor here to separate the tip of the nose from the mustache. Right now, they seem to be on the same plane. The four I'll highlight is needed. Let's start in the nostril too. Yeah, much better. Now let's work on the eyes area. Remember, focus on creating contrast between lights and darks. Apply in my brush and making gradual transitions. I see things in which I could be war gainful hours. But I don't want to admit that nice to us, right? So I'm going to darken the head a little bit. These vanished. Snip different because of the lights of the recording studio. But this is the final result. What do you think? Wow, you made it this far. But yourself in the back because this wasn't an easy portrait to paint. Hope all you have learned in this tutorial help you create many more realistic portraits. I can't wait to see them. See you in the next tutorial.