12 August 2002
Your 12 August, 2002 YouCanDraw.com
every other week caricature
today you're receiving a back-to-back issue of "Your Every other Week
Caricature". (Editor's option :-). Today you'll see a quick pencil mock-up of
the Summer action thriller that has three x's in the title. (I won't write out "triple ecks"
the ez way since many email spam filter's will filter it out.) Vin Diesel's on the cover
of the August 2, 2002 Entertainment Weekly (EW), and this is the version I drew -
great picture too (not my caricature, the EW cover :-). Let's dive on in....
What I found most caricaturable about Vin was the broad and long nose (though
I didn't make it long enough in my drawing), also note - if you look at the actual
EW cover - the sharp edge of the nostril (Vin's right, on the left of the picture),
and the very round tip [of the nose]. Notice the strong shadow under the nose
- now ask yourself which direction the light's coming from.
Hair and eyes
His hair is clipped right to the scalp, giving him a cue ball look; he's got very
dark eyes with long lashes (which I didn't capture so well), and very well
defined "palpebral folds". A palpebral fold is the groove the upper eye lid
makes where it rolls over and under itself between the eyelid margin (where
it touches the actual eye), and the eyebrows. Also notice how the eyelids are
slightly drooping - in the classic Jack Nicholson "I'm so tired of it all" look.
Ears, lips, and prominent facial lines
With the clipped hair, the ears become pretty noticeable and so you can
have a hay day there :-) Heading south down the face Vin has full lips (the
lower lip being the fuller of the two), and he has a broad mouth. Look especially
at the breath of the "naso-labial folds" (those are the lines that run from the top
of the nostrils [the "naso part"] down to and around [and so not touching] the
corners of the lips [the 'labial' part]. Often times people with a prominent protruding
maxilla (the bone from where your upper set of teeth arise) have strong such lines.
Marc Antony, the Latin New York singer, comes to mind. He's got very noticeable
bones and facial lines...probably cuz he's skinny as a bean pole too.
In most shots, Vin has a broad chin and jaw when viewed from the front. In
the profile, the maxilla is so dominant, the chin looks almost as if it's receding.
Just an observation. These are all things that once observed, pulled together,
and juggled around in your brain, might make for a very humorous caricature.
Check out some pictures of Vin at Google or Entertainment Weekly's site and
see what you might come up with:
(Don't be alarmed by the "x - x - x" in the link: it's the name of the new Vin
Diesel action movie.)
Click on 'images' once you've input the name...Vin Diesel in this case. I might
toy with this pencil drawing again in the next two weeks and try to get both a
better likeness and a funnier caricature. I eventually want this "mock-up" to be
the base of a watercolor painting (something I'm trying to get the hang of.)
What did I draw it all with?
Oh, what did I draw this on and what did I draw it with? I drew the original
on a folded in half page of 17 x 24 inch newsprint (which had already yellowed
a little) and I drew it with two pencils: a 4b lead in a mechanical pencil holder
and a plain old number two (in a mechanical holder). The 4B makes a much
lighter line than expected on newsprint so I use a razor sharp run of the mill #2
pencil to make the pencil marks sharper and heavier. Only problem is the
newsprint is so thin you end up tearing right through the paper to make
something darker. (The eyes just don't get dark enough on newsprint.)
Up and coming
Well you all have a great week - and next week, if all goes well I should have
a pretty large "practice page" where you'll dive into learning how to proportion
the human face and head in three full dimensions built around a "Flash" core.
Learning to recognize perspective and proportion in all it's subtle presentations
(as it is at the everyday scale of a human face), is a very necessary step in
your drawing repertoire - especially if you want to draw 3/4 views.
So keep on drawing and I'll talk to you all then!
Jeffrey O. Kasbohm