I thought I’d try something different this week and do a sketch while scanning in several stages to show the progression. This week’s subject is guitar legend Eddie Van Halen, circa 2007.
I start out very loose and geometric, aiming to establish the head shape and placement of the features. 80% of the caricature is figured out at this point, including the exaggerations. Eddie’s forehead is very prominent these days, and his square jaw and chin. His famous goofy grin and squinty eyes are still a big part of his look. I have zero concern about superficial likeness at this stage.
Now I begin fleshing out the sketch a bit, slowly indicating more specific features and expression. I rough in things like the mouth and other features very loosely, making adjustments and changes as I experiment. The likeness begins to take form at this stage.
I “knock down” the rough sketch lines with a kneadable eraser and start to draw with darker and more confident lines. This is still just a sketch so I don’t bother with perfectly clean lines but let things remain rather loose. I start indicating some values as well. I am still adjusting the drawing as needed… for example I have changed the neckline angle and kept the through line consistent along the back of his head.
The finished sketch. Eddie’s years of hard rocking have left their mark…