Mapping Out Portraiture

Term: 1 Year: 2013

Session 1:

Students explore and discuss facial features whilst viewing various photographs and ‘realistic’ portrait paintings/drawings/prints. Mirrors are also available for viewing of own features.

Teacher explains and demonstrates the formula for mapping-out features for a generic face.

Referring to formula sheets, students practice sketching basic features including eyes, mouth & nose.

Session 2:

Sketching lightly, students ‘map-out’ the size and position of basic facial features on A3 paper. An A4 egg-shaped template is useful for students requiring a starting-point. Once in position, features are adapted slightly, and hair, neck and clothing added to create individual character.

Major lines are then redrawn firmly with pencil so they are prominent.

*Photocopy twice – once on white A3 cartridge (130gsm) and once onto black cover paper
(Yes…the lines can be easily seen!)

Session 3:

Students ‘draw’ over the major lines of their portrait with PVA glue.
*I use long narrow bottles with a fine nib but 125ml dispenser bottles suffice. It is important that the hole in the nib is not too large (Hint: rather than cutting off the tip with scissors, poke with a large needle and manipulate until desired hole size is achieved.)

On scrap paper, students practice controlling lines of glue. (Hint: Dragging tip of nib lightly along paper surface helps to eliminate the wobbles.)
When confident, students trace glue lines over the significant lines on their black photocopied portrait.
(Starting at the top reduces the risk of elbows in glue)

Put aside to dry completely.

On white portrait copy students explore colour mixing properties of soft chalk pastels ~ using fingers, ‘paper stumps’ and cotton buds to blend.

Session 4/5:

Students select a ‘natural’ or ‘freaky’ colour scheme.

All sections are to include at least two blended colours.

A contrasting background is encouraged to heighten the dramatic effects of colours in combination.

*If stacked between sessions, store portraits with a piece of clean paper between each sheet

*Ideally spray with workable fixative.

Early finishers continue working on the white copy of their portrait.

Lynn Jennison
Visual Art Teacher
Dingley Primary School
Suitable for level 4