An Obvious -- Yet Still Painful -- Confession

I suppose it's pretty obvious from my work, but I've done practically no portraiture since art school. And I wasn't very good at it back then, either. I'm sorely tempted to make excuses, or couch this in words that would be gentler to my ego, but the truth is it's a fundamental skill I have left woefully undeveloped. I need to change that.

These are my third, fourth, and fifth efforts from today. I console myself with two things. 1) I'm making different mistakes each time. Surely this means I'll be able to get better, right? 2) The photo I'm working from -- taken with a terrible phone under the many banks of florescent lights in the GenCon art show a couple of years ago -- is exceptionally poor, as reference photos go. (See how I don't understand her far cheek? Clearly it couldn't be my fault, so it must be the vague passages of shadows, highlights, and reflected lights are disguising the forms. I'm just not good enough to cover for it. Drat.)

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