My "realistic" drawings are about as bland as bland can be. I'm ready for when Filmation starts up again. My goal is not to learn to draw realistically, but to understand why things look a certain way in general logical terms so I can then simplify and cartoon them.
I gave myself a double problem with these studies. I want to add some hairstyles to my pretty girl palette and am using a Japanese hairstyle magazine. So now I have to figure out how to draw Asian faces on top of having to figure out how hair works.
Yikes, here are some really warped faces below.
A good thing about the magazine I'm working from is that it shows the hairstyles from different angles so it helps me see what the forms are. (Tip: Try squinting your eyes when looking at a form that is made up of lots of distracting details like individual hairs) The most important fact I've discovered so far is that hair has to have a distinct form to look good. ...and that form has to feel like it's really partly made by the shape and position of the head.The drawing on the left stinks to high Heaven. I made her look like a Flounder - but I got something out of it. I tried taking the shapes I struggled to draw realistically and redrew them faster and simplified them into a more cartoony face. That drawing on the right, while not great is less strained than the study. It's a step toward my goal but there is quite a way to go yet.
I find that when I am studying something, I miss important elements. In this one, I made the face too wide. When I see the drawings next to the photo, I realize that the girl has a longer face and that her hair should be wider on the sides compared to the face area.
I share these nasty embarrasing drawings not to teach anybody how to draw realistic girls (which I haven't figured out) but instead to show students that there is a way to methodically force yourself to learn something that doesn't come easy. It's to analyze what you think you see, then to slowly draw it over and over again and see if it starts to make sense and later to try to cartoon it.