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Jacob 1 Year

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


I did this one based on a portrait of our oldest son that I just loved the way it turned out. So, I felt that I needed to draw it.

I used a regular #2 pencil, and a couple different sizes of blending stumps (tortillons). I enhanced the lights in the background to be a little more prevelant than the ones in the actual portrait.

All in all, I am happy with the way it turned out. I did this one in 2005, Jacob was 5 by the time I drew this. It took me I would say maybe a couple of hours from start to finish.


***Note from Kerry:
Michael, this is oh so lovely. Tell me you have it framed?!
Thanks for providing the time line etc, that is terrific info for all concerned and it gives a great guide to go by. xx

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Jayme Portrait

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)



I decided to do a series of Family Portraits for my family. I started with our beautiful daughter Jayme. Some of you remember her, she is the budding artist......
I did this one with a mechanical 2B, mechanical HB and also a regular 2H. I also used a kneaded eraser, and graphite eraser, and a retractable eraser, plus several sizes of tortillons.
I also used a grid on this one.....my first time using a grid......all together (seeing as how I forgot to keep track), I have I think close to 15 hours invested into this one......
I am also including the original picture I used for reference. It amazes me with the "high resolution" scanners, how much detail you loose in the scanned drawing....go figure.....


artist
Note from Kerry:
Hi Michael
First up, I have to say that Jayme is so very beautiful!

I imagine your drawing has come out lightly due to the scanning process? Computers, scanners etc, sure do try our patience.
I think you've done a great job!
Have you shown it to Jayme? Does she like it? Usually, we don't like our own portraits so I guess it's not fair to ask the sitter for a critique.

We are about to have a storm here so I have to shut down the computer - I'm already in enough bother trying to re-do the last 2 months work so I won't tempt fate further!

I can't wait to see the family portraits - it's a great way to keep your mind off your impending op.

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Jennifer Love Hewitt

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


One of my personal fav actress'......Jennifer Love Hewitt is to me beyond georgeous!!

I am not completely satisfied with the results of this portrait, but it is an improvement. I'll just keep drawing and trying till I get them right.

I did this with 3 different pencils, and I only used a blending stump on the dress....nothing else. This took me about 5 1/2 hours.


***Note from Kerry:
Well, well, well - 5.1/2 hours hey? You have impressed me Mr Betz! For someone who has no patience I can't help but be terribly impressed with this piece of yours. To know there's no blending stump used on the hair (which is awesome), that is unreal. You've done a mighty fine job Michael.

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Stevie Wonder

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


Again, I am not a huge Stevie Wonder fan. I do appreciate his work, who wouldn't? But, as I stated before, if it will sit still long enough....I'll draw it.

My kids had a book "How To Draw 50 Celebrity", and this pic was in there....so I did it.


***Note from Kerry:
Michael, this is terrific. The beads are great, good job! I also like the way you've done the calligraphy within the drawing.


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Pope John Paul II

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


I actually drew this back in 2005 right after the Pope died. I am not Catholic but a Pope dying is kind of a big, significant event.
It was done with my mechanical pencil and a home-made tortillon. It is 11x14. I had actually forgotten about this drawing, but I was looking for something in our garage for our daughter Jayme, and found a tube with a couple of old drawings in it. Sorry about the quality of the image, but it was too big to scan, so I took a photo of it and adjusted it in Photoshop.


artist
Note from Kerry:

Gee Michael, this is a fantastic piece and a wonderful tribute to the Pope. Did you say you don't do portraits much? The image at top left has me spellbound, I love this!

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Figure Drawing

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


This is another of the 6 pieces I had working. There is more to the drawing*, but we needed to make it safe for this site. It's all about compromises Kerry....hehe.

I used my usual 3 pencils, and a combination of blending stumps and pencil shading. This took me two days working a couple hours a day.

*if you want to, you can see the whole drawing on my deviantart.com page.


***Note from Kerry:
Hey Michael,
Good compromise! Good drawing. I do admire the way you are working on obtaining more patience with your artworks. The shading effect is excellent, good job mate!

I couldn't find your page at deviantart, is there a trick to finding it? You can copy and paste the link here in the comments - if you want to, that is.

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Jesus Baptised

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


I did this one several years ago, and for a very long time it was hanging in our hallway. I took it down when we moved and it kinda got a little messed up.

It is a larger drawing than I usually do, 11" x 14". My scanner does not go that large so I couldn't scan in all of it, but you get the idea.

This one was done 7 years ago, before I started using a mechanical pencil. The whole thing was done with a regular #2 school pencil, and the shader I used was a home-made rolled up one. This took me a few hours.


***Note from Kerry:
Hi Michael, your drawing is lovely, inspiring and totally brilliant. You're aware that I love the calligraphy on your drawings, it's like the final touch to a masterpiece. I could stare at this for hours and still marvel at different effects you managed to create with a mere pencil.

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Bikini Girl

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


I was not sure if I was allowed to post this one or not....I kept her clothes on...lol. I do nudes as well...(hint, hint...hehe). I just love drawing the female form. The lines are so smooth, and flowing. Men are more hard, chiseled, not as soft and attractive forms.

I honestly do believe that women are proof that God is an artist also.

This one, I drew on paper, then just played with the coloring and saturation a bit in Photoshop.


***Note from Kerry:
Hi Michael!
It's great to see you aren't scared to draw whatever you put your mind to -- and you do it so well!! Your light and shade is good and I like the color effect.

Yeah, sorry about the rules but we are doing the right thing by thinking about the kids that love to visit here. We are introducing them to art gently.

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The Marx Brothers

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


I don't really know much about the Marx Brothers. They were just a hair before my time, but I do recall my Mother watching some of their movies on TV.

I saw this picture in a drawing "How-To" kinda book. So I decided to do it. I didn't do the shading and stuff in this one, I wanted it to be "natural" so to speak.


***Note from Kerry:
Hi Michael,
I love your drawing style, I like this drawing as it is because it makes it "crisp" and easier to study. I think you've done an impressive job here.


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Obama Portrait

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


I did this as a WIP (Work IN Progress) on a Facebook group I am in, from members of drawspace.com.
I decided I wanted to do a larger portrait, see how well I could do it. This is 9 x 12, done with a 2B mechanical pencil, an HB mechanical pencil, several sizes of tortillons and blending stumps, a kneaded eraser, a retractable eraser, and a gum eraser.
All together I have 15 hours over 4 days on this one.


artist
Note from Kerry:
Hey Michael,
So you continue to impress me with your dedication! It is good to see you are learning to acquire more patience and your drawings really show that.

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Nikki And Rico

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


This is the portrait that I have been working on that I mentioned before, the one that is going to be a gift.
This is my niece Nikki and her boyfriend Rico.
I did this with a mechanical 2B pencil, a mechanical HB pencil, a kneaded eraser, a typwriter eraser, and several sizes of tortillons and blending stumps.
This took me quite some time to finish. I am kinda proud of this one.
The next time they come to town, I am going to give it to them.....I think they will like it.


artist
Note from Kerry:

Hi Michael,
I think your portrayal is outstanding artwork! Your niece is going to be thrilled once she sees the dedication you obviously put into it. It's perfect right down to the reflection on her glasses. Great work, buddy!

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Army Ranger

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


Here is my first piece of my "Incomplete" collection. This is (well, was going to be) an Army Ranger that was in a book my son Jared was reading.


***Note from Kerry:
Hi Michael,
It takes gumption to show incomplete works but it is clear to see there's nothing wrong with this one. Your little 'impatient' streak must have taken over and that's a pity, it looks like it has good potential. I hope you get time to finish it, ... one day...

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Alexis And Sophie

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


I did this drawing about 5 years ago. They are the daughters of a former friend. He had seen some of my other drawings and wanted a tattoo design of his daughters.

I included the actual photo used for comparison.


***Note from Kerry:
Hi Michael,
That's a fantastic drawing! You did a brilliant job on the hair highlighting, it's amazing. Did your friend get to see this?

p.s. I am very pleased to see your 3 children participating on this site, you are a good Dad!

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Mouth Study

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


This is a mouth study I did. The top 2 are examples from Lee Hammond's How To Draw Lifelike Portraits From Photographs, the second one is a gridded exercise from the same book, the bearded one is from that book also and the smaller one on the bottom is a freehand one from a picture in a magazine.

I used only a 2B mechanical, and an HB pencil with a kneaded eraser and a retractable eraser....oh and tortillons also.


artist
Note from Kerry:
Hi Michael,
This is really great practice work and it shows me your fine style that I am automatically drawn towards. I wish my practice pages looked like this with those outcomes!

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Nose Study

by Michael Betz
(Las Vegas)


I did this one as a study of noses.
The top one is an example from Lee Hammond's book, How To Draw Lifelike Portraits From Photographs, the second two (side by side) are gridded exercises from that same book, and the bottom three are freehand ones I picked out of magazines.

I used a 2B mechanical, a regular 2B and 2H and only 2 tortillons. Oh, and a kneaded eraser on some parts.....


artist
Note from Kerry:
Hey Michael,
These are great! Do you mind if I ask what paper you are using? It looks like photocopy paper - very smooth - it's the one I love to work with the most.

I just finished doing some exercises like this in my sketchbook but I didn't like the texture or the end result. Made a mental note to go back to photocopy paper!

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