Ah. I used to be a pretty fair portraitist, but my eyes, although they’re still good for day-to-day affairs, can no longer handle the fine closeup work needed (presbyopia). Shooping (or GIMPing, as the case may be) proved to be a Godsend. I’m pretty much at the stage of not caring how something is done provided that it looks good, that there’s art in the handling.
I think that these conditions are true for your intermediate stage here - it looks good, it has art. If you do put up the final drawing, give me a shout, please, so that I don’t miss it. I’d be interested in seeing where you take this.