Drawing human face with values

So this week I tried out a drawing technique completely new to me. Usually I sketch, base colour and colour my drawings completely on one single layer. However, this time I tried out something different. 

1st step - The image

So, to begin with, I took my own Facebook profile picture and opened it on Photoshop and lowered the layers opacity to 95%, so it looked like this.

2nd step - The lineart

Next I drew the outlines on a new layer, focusing only on said outlines. You shouldn’t draw any special details or shadows on the lineart layer, such as outlines of shadows, the shadows themselves etc. Just the outlines of the person of your choice.

3rd step

In the 3rd step I created a new layer under my lineart layer, and filler it with midtone-gray. I also selected 6 more shades of gray ranging from almost pure white to almost pitch black (this is important; never EVER use pure white or pitch black unless you really know what youre doing. Trust me, it’ll look horrible.). I opened the original picture to my second screen as a reference and started sketching out the highlights and shadows. I painted the eyes completely on white. As a brush I used Photoshops basic brush on 0% hardness and opacity ranging from 20% to 43% to 80%. 

Step 4 to 5 - Detailing

I am very bad on documenting my progress so I’m trying my best here to explain how I did this.

First I merged the lineart layer and the basic colour layer. I started out on the darker parts of the image and blurred out the lines on those spots, and with the brush tool I made them less obvious part of the picture. Same with the lighter parts, such as the nose and the hand, except I painted over the lines with a brush, making them “magically disappear”

After all of this I started the detailing progress, and i started it from the nose, the hair and the eyes. I can’t explain how I do it, I just… paint and paint until it looks good to me. So here’s the overall progress so far;

Step 6 - Highlights and shadows

Because I am still studying myself and I do not completely seem to grasp the concept of drawing fingers, I gave up on them. But however I am not finished with the drawing yet. Next up I am going to use whites and dark greys to bring out the shape of the face a little bit more. So, I added another layer just so I don’t mess up my original drawing, and added highlights to the forehead, nose, cheeks, fingers and to the bit of showing skin on the bottom of the drawing.

Next up - some tiny little additions to the shadows. basically just eyelids, under the nose, lips and under the chin.

So yeah, here was the first part of the little walktrough of how I drew this picture. Next time I’ll try to add some colour and some more depth to this.