Creating myself… The Cartoon Quest

As part of the development of this blog, my channel and myself I want to illustrate and express myself as much through my own work as possible. Now, I am no artist, so this will be quite the mission. The art I have done up till now has been from reference but also cartoon-y meaning I am not attempting still life/a realistic picture, however trying to create my own artistic style has been tough enough. Now, I am trying to apply this to my own portrait. To begin with, I experimented with different face styles; eyes, noses and hair – all of which were difficult for me. You can see my experiments below:


I still need to work with them more to get a better idea of how I want me to look and to make it feel original. I have struggled with the eyes and hair in particular. I am also thinking that if I want to have my ‘art self’ in various positions then the style needs to be simplistic to create multiple times while remaining original and true(ish) to me. I decided to then work on a portrait of myself and focus on different elements of the head each week. This week, I started with hair.

I have curly/wavy hair and I struggled getting that to come across. Sometimes, it can be straight, especially when it is shorter so it can look spiky while, when it is longer it is wavier. Considering I can barely even draw straight hair, I took my time, Googled some stuff and worked off some of the ideas on my doodles (namely the two top right pictures)

Stage One- Face Outline

Finished Portrait 1- base picture
Stage 1 – Base Portrait

I got the shape of my face, put in roughly where I wanted my features to be and added headphones, which I did frankly to take away from the amount of hair I would need to do

Stage 2 – Strengthen the Outline

Finished Portrait 1- outline
Stage 2 – Decide the boundaries and shape

Following that, I highlighted where I wanted my face to be and strengthened the outline. I used the base as a guide and changed it according to how I felt it looked, ie the tuft of hair at the back is less and my chin/jaw is less round.

Stage 3 – Work on the hair

Finished Portrait 1- stage 3
Stage 3 – Highlight and fill the hair

This layer, was to fill out the hair colour and neaten it up. You can see what the picture looks like so far without the base lines below:

Finished Portrait 1
Without the baselines

I am pretty happy with the outcome so far although not sure it will look like me or not yet… next step for the hair will be to colour it to add some depth and put some lines and curls in to add some more definition.

Next week, I will be working on the eyes and trying to get that part of the face done.

Let me know how I am getting on and what you think I will need to do improve! Any hints and tips for hair or the upcoming eyes will be greatly appreciated! 

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