How to do shading
This week we are going to look at knowing where your shadow areas are going to be.
This will all depends on where your light source is coming from.
I usually do this in colour (we will cover this in a future blog), but a lot of artists do the shadows in the drawing phase. So if you’re that way inclined have a look at the drawing for this week.
From left to right. The first guy is a typical male character and the light source is coming in from the right. Therefore all the shading would be on the opposite side. Notice what happens with eyes, nose and cheeks. Make sure that your shading takes into account the contours of the face.
Secondly, the smiling character. The light in this case is coming from underneath his face. This is probably the hardest to do because all the shading would be in areas which usually have no shading. So, this can be rather confusing, just plan correctly.
The 3rd drawing of the woman. The light source is in the same place as the 1st drawing although her head is slightly turned towards it. Look at the significant difference it makes to how you shade her. Now the shading doesn’t cover half the face anymore.
And lastly in the fourth drawing the light is coming from behind the character. So all his forward features would be in shadow.
When you choose a light source you need to consider what impact the shading will have on the character. Is this going to work with the rest of the emotion that you are trying to convey?
Tip: When you are trying to decide what to shade and what not to shade, look at the parts of the face that protrude. Chances are that those are the parts that aren’t shaded, they would create shadow behind them.
Practice makes perfect with this one. Experiment and have fun!