Adobe Illustrator: Marilyn Monroe Portrait (cont)

28/01/2014 § Leave a comment

Yesterday we continued with our Marilyn Monroe portrait with Stephen and managed to get a little bit further with it. Here’s where I got up to:


We started off by creating the eye. We turned off our head and hair layer so that we could see our original image clearly and then used the pen tool to draw and fill the black eyeliner which is the main shape of the eye.

The next step was to create the eyelashes, now from personal experience, drawing realistic eyelashes isn’t an easy thing to achieve and I still believe that mine above could do with some more work. However, Stephen showed me a way to create them that I hadn’t used before – I don’t know why as it’s so simple really! Using the pen tool we drew a simple curved black line (6pt) and chose Width Profile 4 from the drop down menu. This gave us our eyelash shape, all we had to do then was position it and copy and paste it again.

For the white of the eye, we simply drew and filled out a shape slightly bigger than the opening and sent it behind the eyeliner. The blue pupil was simple too, holding down ALT we used the ellipse shape tool make a circle slightly bigger than the eye itself. To rid us of the excess eye, we used the scissors tool to chop it off. Straight forward!

Moving on to the eyebrows, I thought this would be very tricky as they need shape to look realistic. Back to the pen tool, we drew our basic line with quite a large stroke, used Width Profile 1 and changed the cornering to round. Done! For the little shape marks to highlight the nose we used the same method, we chose the correct Width Profile for the menu, a fairly slim stroke and drew our curved line with the pen tool.

I couldn’t get over how simple and straight forward it was! We then very quickly got shown how to create some of the shadowing down one side of her face with the line tool. I’m still working on making it look how I want as the pixel width between lines is too large and the shaping is a little off but that can easily be adjusted. Here is my my Marilyn so far (ignore the shadowing for the time being!)

Marilyn So Far


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