Artist-How-To: Artist's eBooks to Support and Inspire Creativity

*All images and words copyright of Diane Dobson-Barton dba as Barton Studio 2002-2009

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Facial Proportions - Taken from our zine 'Drawing'

Facial proportions can vary according to ethnic background and gender. Traditionally men have more angular faces and more pronounced brow just above the eyebrow line. Examine the images shown to see how the eyes fall in the middle of the entire skull, between the tip of the head and chin. In-between the eyes is a space equal to the width of one of the eyes. Halfway between the eyes and the tip of the chin is the line where the mouth opening will fall. Although the model on the left is a young adult female the proportions are the same as an adult. Her features are simply softer and less angular than what would be found in an older mature looking individual.

Remember these are merely guidelines and will need to be adjusted to fit the subject that you are depicting. Below is that of a middle aged male’s profile. When you are drawing a subject keep in mind where your light source is coming from. The same rules apply to drawing a human being as to drawing anything else. The trick is to be objective and to over romanticize, draw what you see and not what you‘think’ you are seeing. Look at the subject carefully and try to look at the person you are drawing more then the paper you are drawing on. Always work from life whenever possible, if you can not find a model or do not feel comfortable doing so as of yet, simply use a mirror and do a self portrait.

Diane Dobson-Barton / 806 S. 10th / Humboldt, KS / 66748 / (620)875-6644 /

*All images and words copyright of Diane Dobson-Barton dba Barton Studio 2002-2009 ©