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Face Line Effect

Commence on the hair with the crayon point No. 2, and put in all the
shadows and half-shadows, carefully preserving the lines of direction,
but avoid working over the lights more than necessary; then with the
crayon point No. 1 strengthen all the shadows about the eyebrows, the
eyes, the mouth, the chin and the ears. Next put the lines in the face.
The following illustration shows the lines before they are rubbed. It
will be well to remember that only two sets of lines are used in the
face, as shown in the illustration, and the same number in the dress,
while there are three sets required in the background. The lines in the
face should be a little closer than those in the background, while
those in the dress are about the same as those in the background.

In the effect of the lines in the face lie the chief merit and beauty
of this method of crayon work. When properly drawn, the lines represent
and give the grain of the flesh in a very beautiful broken effect. They
are drawn so as to leave spaces shaped like diamonds, but in the
finishing should be so treated as to lose their regularity, and to have
the effect of "broken diamonds." If you will examine the back of the
wrist joint when your hand is bent slightly backward, you will see more
clearly what is meant by the term "broken diamonds" in the slight
ridges which show the grain of the flesh. Begin with the forehead,
using the crayon point No. 1, and put in one set of lines straight
across, but curving downwards as the forehead commences to round off
towards the hair at the sides; then one more set of lines in the
direction that will produce the diamond spaces, continuing these two
sets of lines throughout the face. These lines intersecting at the
proper angles will indicate the grain of the flesh, if the line of
direction be carefully followed. Remembering that the face is not a
flat surface, make the lines darker in the shadows and lighter as they
approach the lights. The high lights on the forehead, the nose, the
highest point of the chin, and around the mouth, should, however, have
no lines over them.

Having put in these lines take a small handful of cotton, and rub the
hair and face over both the high lights and shadows, the motion
following the line of direction; that is, being straight across the
forehead, curving towards the hair at the sides, and circular on the
cheeks. Care should be exercised not to rub too hard, it being a common
fault of the beginner to rub the paper too much, and produce a dirty
effect. The lines should be merely rubbed until they are somewhat
blurred and indistinct. Remember that the crayon portrait is made on
the surface of the paper, and not rubbed into it. After it has thus
been treated with the cotton, go over the shadows with the crayon point
No. 1, and rub again with the cotton.

The face of the crayon will now be about three shades darker in the
lights than it should be when finished, and not quite dark enough in
the shadows. Finish it with the No. 0 crayon and nigrivorine eraser,
using the latter wherever a lighter effect is required; also break up
the regularity of the diamond spaces, and whenever a line shows too
prominently subdue it with the eraser.

If you would succeed in making good crayon portraits, it will be
necessary for you to cultivate a light touch with the crayon in

The eraser is one of the principal instruments employed in making
crayon portraits, and is used the same as if it were a crayon pencil,
that is, on that principle, the difference being that you make white
lines with it instead of black ones. Keep the eraser to a sharp point
in the following manner: take a piece of emery paper about three inches
square, and place it in the left hand between the index and second
fingers, holding the fingers about half an inch apart, and bending the
paper to fit between them; then rub the eraser in the crease thus
formed, holding it at an acute angle. Sometimes it is necessary to
sharpen the eraser with a knife or a pair of scissors before rubbing it
on the emery paper. In working with the eraser on the crayon paper do
not rub hard enough to remove all the crayon from the surface of the
paper, except in producing the high lights and the white of drapery.
Notice in particular in finishing the hair that where it touches the
forehead there are no lines, as the light and shade should blend
together so nicely as to leave no decided line between them.

Next: Dress Line Effect

Previous: Fourth Method Of Making The Background Stipple Effect

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