I start with a loosely sketched drawing…. I very quickly add shadow colors. Don’t forget the greens and blues. I like to give the eyes some detail so I have someone to look at 🙂 No such thing as “white” eyes.
The “whites” are full of color. The top of the eye is darkest because it is shaded by the eyelid… Never use pure black or true white as colors in your palette. Even “black” consists of many colors. I place my most-used colors on the side of my painting to save time.
Switch back and forth between your sketch and painting often… Pure white teeth look as fake as bleached-white teeth. Be careful… Teeth – like the whites of the eyes and skin – are very reflective.
Include some of the lip color around the mouth, cheeks, and chin. She’s coming to life… A hint of makeup makes her face light up – just like in real-life. …but don’t overdo it. Watch for the light source(s) in the eyes.
Otherwise, she’ll appear cross-eyed. Eyes are watery; make them appear reflective. Now for the hair. Think, dark-medium-light-lightest. Keep the strokes loose and free… Use the gradient tool to add in a complimentary color to the backdrop.
Don’t forget to sign your name 🙂