Above: Formula for Proportions of the Human Face (and step by step video)
Below: Materials that I used in the video
Face Proportions For Portrait Drawing- Formula Hey welcome back everybody....Its Merrill, I recommend that you watch part 1 before you see part 2. Just click on the image if you havent seen part 1 yet. This is a very important video for anyone who wants to learn portraiture. In this video, I will model the formula taught in part 1 to teach you how to draw a face from your memory. In order to make things easy to remember, I will demonstrate my process step by step. People who memorize these steps will be able to draw a human face from memory without a reference image. Lets get started. Step 1: Draw an oval. Next put a horizontal line through the oval, slightly higher than the half way point. Then add four evenly spaced dots. These four dots will mark the inner and outer corners of each eye. Remember that there is one eye length in between the two eyes. It is imperative that the dots are evenly spaced. You will also need two bigger dots to mark the center of each eye. Step 2: Now add a rectangular shape. The rectangle should be taller than it is wide. The corners of the rectangle should line up with the two dots that mark the center of each eye. Step 3: Add the ears and eyebrows. The ears most often line up with the top of the eye and the bottom of the nose. Step 4: Add the eye shape. Generalized eyes are almond shaped. You will see the bottom of the iris but not the top. Most eyes also have a second line for the eyelid above the eye. Step 5: Add the nose. Notice that I did not add lines for the bridge of the nose. The only lines that exist on a nose are towards the bottom. Step 6: Add the lips. Generally, the top lip is M shaped and smaller than the bottom one, which is bowl shaped. When the face is calm, the corners of the mouth usually does not line up with the middle of the eye. Step 7: Add hair. Be creative.In this experiment, I have taken the most common formulas for facial proportion and tested them on a group of people in a similar pose. I used a computer program to help me take accurate measurements. I made sure that my control group was comprised of both males and females and were of many different races.
So lets get started with a very common proportion rule. The question is- Is it one eye length between each eye? The answer, as you can see, is yes. But this was the only rule that I found to be universally correct.
Lets stick with the eyes for question 2. It is often stated that it is five eye lengths across the face. It turns out that for 9 of the 10 people that I tested, that rule is incorrect. I found that if you included the width of the ear on to the face, then that rule would be closer to true, but definitely not universal. Of the control group, only one person, had a fit, so we can conclude that this proportion does exist, but it does not fit the majority of people and thus, shouldn't be part of a drawing formula.
I recently saw on the internet that the outer corners of the nose, should line up with the inner corners of the eye. Only one of 10 people that I tested proved that proportion to be true. There were also two people who came close. Once again, we can conclude that this proportion does exist, but it does not fit the majority of people and thus, shouldn't be part of a drawing formula. Most often, the outer nose lined up where the tear ducts met the white of the eye. For the record, I hope that the lady in the bottom left never catches a cold.
Question four asks: Does the pupil and iris line up with the corners of the mouth when the face is calm? I will warn you that this was the most difficult to answer, because the mouth is the most variable feature of the face. The shape slightly differs from person to person and it moves a lot. I found that only two people had eyes and mouths which lined up, but, everybody except the gentleman on the top left was extremely close. So, despite the results, I would include this measurement for a general face proportion formula, but I would also be sure to observe the person who I am drawing to get my answer. It is also important to note that 8 of the 10 peoples mouths fit between the lines drawn down from the middle of each eye.
Since question five is related to the placement of the ears, I changed a few of the photos in the control group. In order to gauge this, I had to be able to see the ears clearly. Most portrait formulas state that the ears go from the top of the eye to the bottom of the nose. This turned out to be a pretty accurate statement. Question six is directly related to question five and asks whether the nose and the ears are generally the same size. Although there were only two exact measurements, every other person was very close in measurement. So we can conclude that it is Accurate to say that the ear generally