I'm not so sure copying a master is a great thing to do, but it sure does tune you in to what they did in those vague areas, the ones that are indistinct and fade into the background. It would be interesting to copy a painting. If it didn't kill you, it would make you stronger.
I spent a little time online too today exploring the Portrait Society of America. I was thinking of membership, but discovered I wasn't ready. While I'm sure my dues would be appreciated, I want my skills to be closer to those of the other members.
The winning portraits in their last membership show were much more developed than anything I've done so far. What caught my attention was that few of the winning portraits were head and shoulder or three quarter figurative poses, they were people involved in something or with some others. That observation sent me to my reference photos to see if I had any photos that would work. I found a couple, but most singled out the subject. I'll have to make a photographic change. It's time to start JD, he came close and I did find a usable photo of Ellis. It's also time to take a formal portraiture class. Where is Spring? I'm in a hurry.