How to overcome negative thinking – drawing a self portrait with charcoal pencils

There is a story behind this self-portrait as there is with all art.  I began this portrait as I do with any drawing.  I chose my art supplies, my picture and began.  This portrait however, did not quite go according to plan.  I struggled with getting it “just right” I had to battle my thoughts of “I can’t do this” I would just like to say right now I won the battle, and if you are interested in how I did this please continue to read…….

So let me set the scene for you.  I chose to use charcoal pencils, I have used charcoal sticks before but not the pencils so this would be a new experience for me.  The pencils set I have comes with light, medium, dark and tinted white.  I chose the light for the sketching in.  Paying close attention to my selfie I began by drawing the basic shape of the head and measuring then marking where my features go.  If I notice a mistake I just change it.  However, I kept finding mistakes and changing them but it was not turning out quite how I expected it to.  For some reason, the face just did not quite look right.  There was something wrong that I was just not finding.  I could not place my finger on why it was not looking right, so became very frustrated.  My thoughts became rather negative, I started to think I was never going to get this portrait right. I began think I clearly can’t draw as well as I thought I could.  So I took a photo of it and sent the picture to an artist friend of mine in an effort to get some help and support.  I knew my artist friend would understand what I was going through as all artists can have that frustrating moment when a project is not going according to plan lol

My friend did understand but doing this also allowed me to take a step back from the process and I finally found what was wrong with my drawing and what I need to change.  I probably should point out that the time away from my drawing was overnight.  It was the following day when I was fresh, I made the changes and managed to salvage my drawing and finished it.  I made a video of my process and it is available for you to view below if you are interested.

Oh one last thing. Another good tip for finding errors in proportions is to turn the work upside down or look at it in a mirror.

Thank you for stopping by hope you found this helpful. Enjoy the video.