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Basics of Figure Painting (Continued)

By Michael Johnson


The following is a very basic process for painting eyes.





Enamel Paint Colors Used

  • Flat Burgundy or Maroon

  • Flat Black 

  • Flat Light Gray

  • Flat Light Blue, Light Green, or Light Brown (Depending on Preferred Eye Color)

  • Flat White 

  • Testors "Dullcote" spray paint



  • Small detail brush- Sable Hair or soft bristle

  • Fine point pen

Part II: Eyes

Eyes Step 1 Step 1 (Base) - Paint the entire eye area with a Burgundy base (Include the inside of the lower eyelids and tear ducts)
Eyes Step 2 Step 2 (Dark Shadow) - Paint the inside of the upper eyelids with a flat black (This will add contrast and simulate the eyelashes).
Eyes Step 3 Step 3 (Eyeball) - Paint each eyeball with light gray. 
Eyes Step 4 Step 4 (Mark the Pupils) - Use the fine point marker to mark the location of the pupil in each eye. Using a marker will reduce the chance the final figure ends up cross-eyed.
Eyes Step 5 Step 5 (Define the Cornea) - Paint the entire cornea area using flat black.
Eyes Step 6 Step 6 (Color the Cornea)- Use your preferred eye color to paint the cornea, leave a flat black edge around both sides of each cornea.
Eyes Step 7 Step 7 (Add Pupils) - Paint the pupils using flat black.
Eyes Step 8 Step 8 (Add Highlight) - Paint a small flat white dot on the right half of each pupil.  
Eyes Step 8 Step 9 (Dullcote) - Spray the figure with dullcote to seal the paint and blend the details.  Some people add a spot of glosscote to the eyes, but I don't like the effect as reflecting light tends to wash-out all the details that were painted into the eyes.  
Multiple Views of Completed Figure 

Eyes View aEyes view bEyes View c

Continue to Part 3, Eye Brows:


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