Watercolor Portrait of Kevin's Mom Joyce - Sketch on Arches Paper
This is the transferred sketch on my Arches watercolor paper. After transferring my guide lines to the paper, I further defined her features in pencil. Her face is quite small, 1x3/4" and the reference photo is very tiny and blurry. Of course not ideal for realism but I think really ensuring her features are refined as much as possible before starting with the watercolor washes will really help with the size limits.
Here is a close up of the portrait in pencil. Once the watercolor is applied most of the pencil lines will dissolve. This works with most pigments except yellow pigments so avoid using yellow for the first layer over a pencil drawing if you don't want the lines to show. Once dry, you can erase the pencil lines altogether or leave them as it is quite nice to have some of the pencil lines peeking through and adds crisper details.
If my client feels this captures his mom, Joyce, I will then lighten the pencil lines a touch with a kneaded eraser and then start building up her skin tones with watercolor.
This is the rest of her figure and shadow which will be the most refined area of the pencil drawing. The rest of the landscape does not to be quite so accurate so not as much time is needed during the sketching phase.