Face proportion

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This topic contains 5 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by Riya P 4 years ago.

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    I'm new here so would like to know how to optimize my practice sessions for face proportion. I'm a beginner so can only draw neutral face expressions right now. But overall what do I do in 30sec, 1min, 5min and 10 min sessions? Please advise.


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    For the study of face proportion, I like to work slowly, rather than with a timer. There are lots of YouTube tutorials on proportion, such as with the Loomis Method. Studying those, and participating in the 100 faces challenge (even though I’m only about half done) have done well for me to lay a solid foundation of what happens where on the head. Now that I’ve got that foundation in place, gesture sketching is helping me to bring the people to life. But before I’d studied the face and features, slowly and in depth, gesture sketching was just frustrating: rather than fixing my problems, it made them more obvious.


    Thank you so much. That was of great help!?I guess I too should start slowly and then do these practice sessions, once I'm comfortable with what goes where and at what distance from other features. Thanks again!


    Ok, my advice would be the exact opposite.

    It might feel like faces with a strong expression are “more advanced”. But strong expressions mean that there’s visible muscles and movements, and gesture drawing like we focus on here is made for drawing movement. So strong emotion often winds up easier because you don’t have to think so hard about what muscles are moving.

    The main thing you use for initial proportions is a circle with a cross on it in basically all systems for faces. It doesn’t have to be a good circle, just a scribble. Same for the cross. The horizontal line is the eye line, the vertical one shows you where the nose should go. Get that in as a guide, then start working on what muscles seem most important for the expression. You won’t finish in 30s, but you aren’t ever supposed to. You do a bunch of bad drawings in a class. Then at the end you mark up each time slot with which one was best.

    One 30m class gets you a lot of bad drawings.

    6 gets you over 100 bad drawings. In a mere 3 hours of practice. It’d be really shocking if you were not better at faces and proportion after 100 drawings.

    Spending the same 3 hours trying to get proportions right on one drawing will not have as big an effect because most of your time is spent on tiny details rather than the big picture of how do noses and eyes fit together.


    Makes sense, thank you!

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