Digital Painting Online: How to Paint a Man’s Head in Photoshop

In this digital painting online tutorial, I am going to talk about the process that I use to paint this men’s head in photoshop. I am not going to talk a lot about photoshop techniques in this digital painting online tutorial, but more of the actual painting process that I use to get the results, because I think photoshop is just a tool and its the painting skill that will make a difference.

Step 01
First, I look for a random photograph of a man online. Making sure that it is either 1/3 or 1/4 view because photographs like these can show the facial features better. Then I start by getting the overall proportion of the head and the position of the eyes, nose and mouth fixed. At this stage we are only looking at the general shape and proportions of the head.
digital painting a guy's head step 1

Step 02
Once I have all the positions and proportions more or less fixed, it is the time to add in a little bit of details of the facial features. When you are putting in the facial features, always keep in mind that you are trying to define the various surfaces using perspective lines so that the whole drawing looks 3d.
digital painting a guy's head step 2

Step 03
After the minimum details are added in, it is time to paint in some of the initial shadings that will define the surfaces even more clearer. You can see that things are starting to look more 3d after some shading is painted in. Shading in digital painting is much more easier than traditional medias like pencils and charcoals and it is also a lot easier to control the dark and light value of your brush in photoshop.
::A quick photoshop digital painting tip::
By pressing the number 1 to 0, you are able to control the amount of ink flow out from your photoshop brush. It is very convenient when you want to control the dark and light tones during digital painting.
digital painting a guy's head step 3

Step 04
After the overall light and dark tones are defined, we will then proceed to add a few more layers of shading while keeping the overall dark and light tones to its original contrast. It is very important to make sure that there are many levels of gradient from the darkest tone to the lightest tone in your drawing. The more levels of gradients you have in your drawing the better it will look. Find out the darkest and lightest areas and make sure they remain so through out your digital painting process. This concept applies to painting with traditional medias as well.
digital painting a guy's head step 4

Step 05
One thing good about digital painting in photoshop is that it provide you with a non linear painting process which opens up a lot of new doors for experimentation. In this case, I tried to use some painting effect filters in photoshop and this is the result I get after some minor touch ups with a dry media digital brush. If you notice that I have actually added in quite a bit of details on the facial features while leaving the rest of the things relatively loose. It is done to increase the depth of my digital painting, so that the more detailed areas will move forward and less detailed areas are pushed further away from the viewer.
I will make some tutorials especially on how to make use of the filter and brushes in photoshop to help you paint better digital paintings. So remember to come back later for more updates..:)
digital painting a guy's head step 5

Step 06
Finally, I use the hue and saturation tool in photoshop to do some color correction to my digital portrait painting, giving it a sepia hue which turned it into a old photograph. I hope you enjoy this digital painting online tutorial and happy painting!
digital painting a guy's head step 6

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