General Joseph Hooker
Some important stylistic influences in these portraits are the work of illustrators like Barron Storey, Max Altekruse, and Gary Kelly. I owe much to Detroit area artist Max Altekruse, who I had the pleasure of working with at McNamara Associates from 1981 to 1995. Max is one of the great classically trained illustrators still working. He trained at the New York Artist's League more than 45 years ago and is skillful at making every corner of an illustration fascinating to look at.
The details in the faces of these illustrations are formed from abstracted shapes. The nose on General McClellan, for example, is treated like an elongated cube shape and is defined by distinct edges. Finding edges, even in the subtle contours of the cheeks, gives definition to the face and creates opportunities to accentuate the style of the strokes. This is a fundamental lesson I learned from studying the works of great illustrators like those mentioned above.
Almost anyone can render a face and create a likeness, but top level illustrators can bring out a unique stylistic quality that makes their work easy to identify. A great example of this is the poster illustration of Drew Struzan. Visualize the Indiana Jones poster artwork and you will get an idea of what I am talking about.