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Main proportions of a head

Main proportions of a head

Question from Wayne, Drawing Academy student

In the “Drawing a face” lesson, the 1/3 placement of the nose, eyebrow, and hairline uses the top of the hairline and bottom of the chin as the outer dimensions to calculate the 1/3-1/3-1/3 and not the top of the skull and chin. This leads to the question: How much room do I allow for the hairline to the top of the skull before I divide it into thirds?

I really appreciate your help and critique of my work. It has taught me to pay more attention to detail.

Answer from Vladimir London, Drawing Academy tutor
Watercolor artwork by Vladimir London

Hi Wayne,

Many thanks for your question.

As you already understand, the thirds of the total head height and the thirds of the face are not the same.

The main guideline of a face is the eyeline, which divides the head in half:

Main proportions of a head

After that, you need to measure the distance from the eyeline to the line of the eyebrows on the model. Because these two lines are quite close, it is easy to do.

Main proportions of a head

Then you divide the distance from the eyebrows line to the bottom of the chin in half; this would be the base of the nose:

Main proportions of a head

It is the same distance as from the eyebrows to the hair roots:

Main proportions of a head

I hope this helps.

Best Regards,
Vladimir

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This Post Has 1 Comment

  1. Wayne says:

    Thanks – that is a tremendous help.

    I only stumbled across it when I was comparing my screen captures. I think other beginners might have the same problem if they don’t realize the difference between the thirds of the head vs. the thirds of the face area such as I did.

    Again, thanks for your quick reply.

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