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lithriel's avatar

Step by Step of a Realistic Portrait (Tink)

Here is that promised step by step of my Tink piece. It's more of a tutorial format but when I get some more free time I'll do a quick movie step by step of the process which I will link here. Please download the PDF for the full file.

You can find the original image here- [link]

PLEASE NOTE: This tutorial assumes you already know how to draw well, that you have a Wacom drawing tablet with pressure sensitivity and a stylus, and that you have a recent edition of Photoshop and know how to use it.

You'll need Nathie's brushes which can be found here- [link]

If you are interested in DAZ studio you can download it here- [link]

If you want the model I used you can buy it here- [link]

For an in-depth tutorial of how to light a scene in DAZ please see this- [link]
© 2012 - 2021 lithriel
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Bloodsong13T's avatar
heyas, lithriel!  your portrait painting tutorials have helped me immensely.  thanks so much for sharing!  : )

i don't know if you're still lurking or whatnot, but one major thing i have a problem with... after i block out the main hightlight and shadow areas, i get stuck.  i don't know what, exactly, i'm supposed to be doing to get the colour blocks to blend smoothly and to work out the details.  i mean, my instinct is to just grab the smudge tool and go nuts, but i know that's not the proper way to do it.

is there any tutorial you've seen (or made, of course), that covers just that part?  (or anybody who wanders by the comments...!)

lithriel's avatar
Do your brush settings look like mine? With opacity and flow set to pen pressure? If so, then you may want to change your brush to the soft round brush more often. It softens the look of it. I don't recommend it for the block-in, but once you have established the structure, it can be used to help blend in colors.
Bloodsong13T's avatar
the 'normal' soft brush?
yes, i have set up a brush as in your tutorials.  i never thought of using the pressure to affect the opacity/flow.  and i always used the standard 'shop soft brushes, so i never realized how useful a harder-edged one can be.

i have found more tutorials, with one that defines the blending process part.  which goes something like this:

paint the one colour.
paint the second colour.
overlap them a bit.
sample the in-between colour that results from the overlap.
paint that over the first colour and the middle colour.  paint it over the second colour and the middle colour.
keep sampling the in-between colours and doing them by halves...

and i have discovered that if i tried to do THAT, i would go nuts.  i do not have the patience.

i have found a different method tutorial, that has a very nice blending brush using the smudge tool -- that doesn't look like the ugly smeary smudge tool.  i've been working with that.

i do want to thank you for taking the time to get back to me.  the transitionary phase has always been a blocking point for me, even in traditional media.  (i think i actually really hate painting, and only enjoy drawing : X )
lithriel's avatar
No, you need a tablet with pressure sensitivity installed, otherwise your painting will not blend naturally and you have to do it "the hard way", which is the way you just described. Pressure sensitivity set to opacity and flow make all the difference. You don't have to think about the colors building up or blending, they just do.
Bloodsong13T's avatar
if you have time, i have a really dumb question about the pore brushes and layer...  i sample the colours of the skin to paint the pores, but... i can't see anything because it's painting dots of the same colour as the background layer....!  is there a special trick or technique to this?  or i'm not understanding it correctly.

oh, are there special settings for the pore brushes?  i mean, to use with the brush shapes?

thanks so much for all your help!
Bloodsong13T's avatar
ohhhhhh.... okay!

i still get a little frustrated with it... i tend to have a light touch on my tablet, and i never seem to grind the nib hard enough to get the 100% effect.  that, and i prefer drawing to painting.  all that switching colours gets to me, too.  ; )

i'll give it another shot and see if it works with the conglomerate technique i'm building up.  thanks!
ambermdigitalpaints's avatar
This is very helpful! Thank you! :)
TrinitySage's avatar
I featured your tutorial in my journal today!
Here's the link if you'd like to check it out -
ambermdigitalpaints's avatar
Cool tutorial! I'll have to try DAZ Studio because I'm tired of always searching for perfect references... :p
nisnnoiso on o mo
reh-sa's avatar
This is very good! Thank you so much!
manapi's avatar
Very helpful, thank you so much!
andbrg's avatar
Thank you so incredibly much for this! :heart: :love:
It helps so much! :)
Jadeyfish's avatar
Amazing, thank you :)
Thanks for share!!
bramblefae's avatar
Awesome, this is great!
Jakit's avatar
wow!! soooo much detail!! <3 wicked work, thanks!! ^_^
AutumnEmbers's avatar
Thanks for creating this. I just started using DAZ to help me with references when I can't find anything online. Do you use the same model for your references or do you have a few different ones?

As for adding pores to the painting, do you brush over the same colour with the same colour or do you put a lighter colour over a darker one? I've tried adding pores before and it ends up looking rather spotty and odd.
lithriel's avatar
I morph the face on DAZ to suit my needs. I have purchased a few of Danae's characters which are really good- Milan, Paris, and Lyon. They are a good starting point and then I morph them to whatever I need.

I try to keep the value the same when done so it's a delicate back and forth process until it looks right. It does take time and finessing.
AutumnEmbers's avatar
I'm still learning the points around DAZ because I haven't used it in years. I've only had limited exposure to Maya and Poser when they first came out years ago.

I'll have to check out those models and thank you for the tips. =)
o0MaYa0o's avatar
great tutorial, thanks a lot !
ceruleanvii's avatar
Nicely done! I really should think about using 3D for reference more, especially since I work as a 3D artist!
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