Eve

Finally a new portrait. I wanted to draw it for a long time and this idea seemed nice so I decided to give in and go for something simple this time. I wanted to draw one of my characters once again. I drew her once before but I wasn't really happy with the result. I even have the video saved but... I never published it. Too ugly. Didn't like it. This time I am happy with the result. She is exactly as I see her in my mind. Ladies and gentleman - meet my Eve.

And apart from the drawing - who can guess what kind of snake that is? :D

At first I just sketch out her face. I do it on the separate layer and with a hard brush. I roughly position her face features, eyes, nose, lips. With a portrait, where face takes up a huge part of the whole drawing, I usually don't pay much attention to the sketch. With a more complicated drawing it's a great help but right now I don't need anything more. Sketch developed into something very strange right now. Those skulls were in the beginning placed here just because I thought they would look good but after a while I realized this actually makes some sense. Even that snake :D When everything fits together I pick colors for the painting on the separate layer. Red and blue, looks great. Time go get to work!

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I start with the face of course, as I always do. Under the original sketch I paint some flat color surface with a soft brush - just a base for the face I will be painting. I place just some basic shadows on her eyes, nose and lips. Notice how unusual the skin color is. I liked it that way, especially when it's really hard to say that she is alive... Above the sketch, on a new layer, I also added some hair just to have so idea about the contrast. On the yet another layer I start placing her face features with a hard brush. Opacity is set below 100%. You can see how rough my first strokes are. It's also good to place the most important colors on the drawing right away so I use sky-blue for the eyes and some deep red for the blood and lips.

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I make her eyes a bit smaller and add more detail. Draw eyelids with a darker color and fix messy lines with a smudge tool. For shadows I sometimes use red, eyes look a bit swollen and unhealthy then. Same thing with the whites of the eye. It should have a delicate shadow but I use red instead. But this is a stylization you don't usually use, it's something like a special effect here. Further from the eyes shadows become more gray than red. That way color will contrast nicely with this almost-gray complexion. Lights are also almost gray, with a tint of yellow. I add darker and darker shadows around the nose and also some red, since blood is present.

I start to work on her skin more, making face look smooth. I also add more shadow to the one part of it just to not make it look so flat. At this stage I use smudge tool for small elements, like eyelids or nose. But cheeks and all other flat surfaces are too troublesome for that so I just switch to the soft round brush then. It doesn't take much time to do it and she looks way better now, without any hard edges between strokes. Lips were painted with a hard brush, you can see every stroke, same with the blood under her nose. Final thing is fixing some hair near her face, just for her to look a bit better :)

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Eve Eve Eve

For a moment I play with her hair with a very strong smudge tool but it doesn't take much time before I am bored. Under the hair, with lights and shadows picked from the face, I start painting her neck and shoulders. On the beginning they are very rough, done with a hard brush. It shows that I am just looking for the good shape. Slowly, with smudge tool and low brush opacity I make those transitions between shadows and lights look better and better. You can see on the pictures how it goes. Finally I use soft brush to make the skin look smooth and delicate. I also used color from the face to avoid creating a difference in tone between her face and neck. On the last picture I move the girl up a bit and add some more water. For now it's pretty much random, just some soft and hard strokes, I just wanted something to be there.

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Eve Eve Eve

It's time to work on her hat a little bit. On the separate layers I paint both skulls, for the time being still in a sketchy way. At first I just want to know what will be there, since on the original sketch I just put some random things and didn't really think about them. Now it's high time to do so. Between skulls I add some lilies and also red ribs behind everything and small, pink snake as a bonus. After putting it all together I start seriously painting this human skull first.

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I paint the skull with a hard brush, just a tiny little bit soft on the edges. Opacity is around 50%, that way I don't have to change the color all the time. I build the shape stroke by stroke, adding more lights and shadows as long as contrasts are good and skull starts to look like a 3D object ;) I erase edges with the hard eraser and use smudge tool to soften some parts. It's really useful to use a picture or model for reference while painting skull. At least it's way easier for me. As you can see I don't care much for the detail here, the skull also doesn't have any texture, it's almost completely smooth. Second one is painted in the same way.

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Skulls and ribs are done (those ribs were just few strokes of hard brush and a bit of smudge tool, that's all), now the time has come for the lilies. At first I just paint them flat, defining shape and base color. On the flat color I add shadows and darker lines with a hard brush and then with smudge tool I blur everything out, shaping the flower petal. On the middle picture you can see one petal still before I used smudge tool and few of them after I did so. It's very easy, lilies are great flowers, I really can't paint any other ones well... :D After painting the petals I add small inside details and they are done.

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Her "hat" is ready and looks good. Time to add the snake. At first I just define the shape, then add some more details, shadows and pattern. I use mostly hard brush for that and also a lot of smudge tool. I am not trying to draw anything complicated on the snakes body, I am too lazy fro that... ;) It's worth remembering to add shadows on the skulls too.

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Finally I fix details on her face. I add the missing scar too - at first I paint it with a hard brush and then use smudge tool to ease out some parts and make it blend with the skin better. I add detail mostly around the eyes - bottom eyelids, eyelashes and such. I also fix corners of her eyes, adding more red and refining lines. Shadows near the nose are made deeper and also saturate colors more. The most important thing is detail in her eyes - I added more highlights and some small details on both irises.

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I add more lines on her lips and some more pink. Transitions are softer now, lips don't look so dry now. That blood from her nose also doesn't look so bad anymore since I used smudge tool. All those hard transitions between colors which came from hard brush are now gone. And finally I paint hair, adding trillion of thin lines in different colors. Notice that you can still see how the overall hair goes, in spite of all the detail. Her hair is a bit messy, fluffy but still in locks, it has some sense. On the outer edge I draw it lighter and with less contrast - that way that part of the hair seems like it's in the back.

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Next I sketch out all those butterflies. You can see here, that I didn't think too much while drawing them. They all have same size, that's quite boring. I will fix it later though, for now I just paint everything with a hard brush to secure colors for later. I want all those butterflies to look the same and to have the same color. Then I move to the details and with a smudge tool I make the butterfly take a proper shape. Then I add dark lines on the wings and use dodge tool (in highlights mode) to add a highlight. Then some more smudge tool to make those dark lines less visible and butterfly is ready. Rest is painted the same way, sometimes blurred with movement blur. Also the one sitting on the girl needs a shadow. And for that shadow it's a good idea to add some blue to it.

Eve Eve Eve
Eve Eve Eve

Finally - the water. I don't really know how to paint it. I just placed some random soft and hard strokes, trying to achieve some resemblance to the water surface. Horizontal movement blur is also quite helpful. At first I tried to put in shadows, only after that I added lights and fixed ends of hair which touched water. Last thing was a new layer with a color blending mode on which I added some more color, to create something like reflection in the water. In the back, waves blur out and merge with the background. Notice how it's almost white on the bottom and darker at the top.

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Last final detail is drawing scales on the snake. I thought that I should share how I managed to draw it very quickly, maybe it will come in handy for some of you one day. On the separate layer, with a small hard brush, I draw some simple and messy ribbons on my snake. You can see them on one on the pictures below. Then I use smudge tool (very weak) and "move" those drawings a little, to make them blend with the whole snake better. And that's it. Works well and it's very fast to make, this delicate scale. It won't work well unless there is already some kind of texture or pattern below the scales, just like the one I drew before. Last final touch is that bit of light which I drew with a soft brush on the new layer with overlay blending mode.

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And here you have it, my Eve is done. Don't look her in the eye for too long... ;)