Halfway through my studies at the International Face Painting School Olga challenged me to create my own Spiderman design. The idea of having to create a ‘new’ Spiderman really scared me, but it inspired me even more. So much more than I started sketching right away and even tried one sketch on my son the same day… And it became one of my exam designs!
In this tutorial, I will show you a similar and improved design. I made it smaller, used a different way of highlighting and left the eyes open (because my son really doesn’t want his eyes to be painted anymore 🙂) and made them more round too. But the structure of the design is all the same.
The two different versions will give you the opportunity to choose the size and details you like most and implement them in your own Spiderman design. 😘
- Global Funstroke Melbourne
- Mehron Beach Berry Red
- PartyXplosion Black
- PartyXplosion White
- Ultimate Graffiti Eyes Stencil Kit
- Loew-Cornell Round Brush #4
- Loew-Cornell Round Brush #3
- Kryolan Dreamblend Wide Chisel brush
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Step 1: The base
The eyes of Spiderman have a very distinct shape, although they changed a lot throughout history. But the main features are always the same: the highest point is on the outside and the bottom contour is not flat but has a slight angle. A kind of triangle that has fallen to the side.
If you are not sure about the eye shape it is always best to sketch them first, using a small round brush (#2 or #3) and watery white paint.
Normally I don’t sketch the eyes anymore, especially not when I am painting an entire white eye. But, in this case, I did, because I wanted to use a (blue) split cake for the eyes, so I needed to know the exact shape.
After sketching the eyes, I loaded a wide chisel brush with the two lightest colors of a blue split cake and painted a narrow band of color inside the eyes.
I rounded off the top and varied the width of the band depending on the place, to create nicely shaped holes for the eyes. I used a chisel brush instead of a flat brush because I wanted a soft contour and not a hard line.
Next, I loaded the same brush with bright red paint and drew the red base of the mask. I curved the contours so they would suit the shape of the face.
The most important thing when painting this red base is keeping enough space in the center for the spider legs. If you make it too narrow in the middle, the legs will be too close to each other and especially near the nose that looks really odd.
Step 2: Drawing the spider, the eye contours and adding texture
I chose to use a (dot) stencil here. I added some blue dots in the eyes and red dots on the forehead and cheek using the same paints I used before, all that to balance the design.
After adding the dots I loaded my favorite brush, a Loew Cornell #4, with regular black and outlined the eyes. Like I said before, the eyes have a very distinct shape. The width of the black outline e.g. varies and the top is pointy on the outside but rounded on the inside.
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Next, I drew a spider in the middle of the design, using the same brush and paint. The placement of the spider is so that the separation between head and body is in the central focal point and all the legs are directed to that same point.
Step 3 (optional): Adding faint highlights
To add a bit more depth to the spider and the eyes, I painted some faint highlights on the black parts, using the same split cake and chisel brush I already used for the eyes and dry paint consistency.
Step 4: Adding white highlights
There isn’t a lot of white in this design, because the eyes aren’t covered completely. But Spiderman really needs white. So we add white highlights.
In this case, I highlighted the web and spider using a round brush #3 and regular white paint.
As you can see, I didn’t place all the highlights in the right spots (and my son wasn’t exactly in the mood to correct it 😉). But it really doesn’t matter much. It is great if you do, but if you don’t, it is okay too. Children don’t see details like these and the reason we face paint is to make them happy, right?
So, even if you have made mistakes, just smile and say that they look absolutely amazing! That will put a big smile on their face (unless they are not really in the mood for face painting 😄).
Ready to roll!😎 And one more side view…
For the best placement of the different elements in this design, you can rely on the focal point theory.
As you can see in the picture below, I used a lot of them: the central FP for the position of the spider and his legs (and the direction of the cobweb wires!) and the intermediate and cheek FP’s for the shape and placement of the eyes.
But I also used the chin and top focal point to determine the shape and direction of the mask and web.
Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions about this design, or if you need some feedback on your own design!
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