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Hair Tutorial - Introduction

I take a closer look at some of my digitally painted portraits and give a summary of the different styles I've used in painting hair that I hope you will find useful.

Full paintings with Speed Painting YouTube video links in my gallery…

My other Tutorials:
Hair Tutorial - Part 2 by PackwoodPainting Hair - Part 3 by PackwoodLips Tutorial - V2 by PackwoodLips Tutorial - V1 by PackwoodEyes Tutorial - V1 by PackwoodSkin Tutorial - V1 by Packwood
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© 2013 - 2021 Packwood
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Thank You!!

TheForgottenMyth's avatar
LOL I like your final tip at the bottom XD
evil0verlady's avatar
This has got to be the best realistic hair tutorial I've found so far! Your digitally painted hair looks so real!:love:

You mention in the tutorial about other hair painting tutorials you were thinking of looking at. Do you have any recommendations?

Also, is it easier to do this in colored pencils, and do you recommend tutorials for that? I'm still pretty new to digital painting and using the tablet (setting everything up with pressure sensitivity, etc.).

I'm so glad to have found this!:ilovedevart: 
Panhead13's avatar
How would you paint jet black hair? What color would you use? How would you do it?
Packwood's avatar
Hi, if the lighting is just white light, then shades of grey (like this:… ) . If you have coloured light sources, then obviously more colours are needed. Best probably to do an image search on Google for black hair then you will have a good reference.
Here a couple of my portraits with very dark hair:
Hilary Duff Painting by Packwood   Moko Painting by Packwood  Maria Montez painting in Photoshop by Packwood
Panhead13's avatar
Awesome! Yeah, it's what I did on my first portrait (Of course the hair looked terrible, but that was from the edgings). Thanks for the help! Now, I'm going to take what I've learned, and do something (hopefully) amazing with it!
HiddenWorlds's avatar
Think this is the first part so faving it too
IshaJules's avatar
FlemethAlenkoTherin's avatar
While this is a lovely tutorial, and incredibly helpful, I must ask, what is a Wacom? 
Packwood's avatar
Link to Wacom website - - A Wacom is a tablet and pen that you can use to draw with your computer.
FlemethAlenkoTherin's avatar
I've been looking for one of these for so long! Thank you so much for the link, I really appreciate it. :D
Sankesh94's avatar
ok i'm gonna smack myself not my computer because its more valuable than me 
and gotta save money for wacom this company making me crazy with their products...  
ynne-black's avatar
You sure have patience... I also don't like drawing hair, at all, especially when we have to draw traditional portraits in school... but I dare to say you paint hair quite well :3 My favourite part is the one with blurry hair over shoulders, it looks like those professional photo portraits, and it really draws attention to face.
chillydragon's avatar
Ohh no... :facepalm: I use a touchpad...
coral-striker's avatar
A touchpad's just as good as any other digi tool. Stick with it and you'll go far, trust me! :w00t:
chillydragon's avatar
piggy-tails's avatar
awesome tutorial! I had to laugh at your mouse comment; I would smack myself, but seeing as I'm stuck with the mouse till my husband can finish building me a new computer and get me a newer version of photoshop, I'll save myself the pain and just dream of the day when I get my wacom (and who knows, mayhaps the one I really REALLY want will be dirt cheap by then!!)!
Packwood's avatar
Yeah, I know how that is... I'm saving for an upgrade too and probably hand this one down to the kids (the one I'm using is about 8 years old... maybe more).
Eveqi's avatar
LOL about the smacking :D Yes, mouse is not the best idea :lol: It's very illustrative and helpful tutorial, thank you very much for making it :iconflowerthnxplz:
serafina-rose's avatar
Thanks! Is very useful!!!
8DFineArt's avatar
That's a great tutorial, very helpful, very nice presented and funny, too! Thank you! I like the first line. :D
And the tip about "implying detail from feedback of the vision". That's very cool and I've never thought about that.
Your depth-of-field hair is really stunning and photorealistic, even on the closeup!
Packwood's avatar
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