Helen had us do an interesting set of drawings, starting with an out of focus slide that you could barely see the face features. She suggested charcoal and gum eraser so you could pull out highlights. Working from general to specific information, every few minutes she focused and made the image more concise. I guess the same general principal as squinting at your subject to determine light and darks and general composition. I've worked very little with portraiture so it was quite a challenge for me. These are 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 8B graphite on card stock. (charcoal is so messy) I always think I'll get back to them and finish........on to the next thing. Someone asked for an ugly subject for the 3rd one, those are extended lips! For that one I used a pen and did not darken the features as I knew I would not have the option to pull out lights.
My quick self portrait is hard to post as I've heard others express. It is also pen on card stock, doesn't look like me, I've given myself bigger eyes and I look younger than I am. Helen's exercises gave me a little confidence to try. I would feel acomplished if I could draw a person that actually like them. I will keep trying.