Faces art reference

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Comic Art Reference – Faces in Perspective

Faces in Perspective

Drawing the face in perspective can be a challenge. Here’s a perspective sheet I found by concept artist and illustrator Alfonso José Elola.

What Alfonso has done is drawn a single face from different angles. He’s drawn the head from the front to both the right and left three quarters view. He’s also shown examples of a top view to a bottom view. Using comic book terminology, Alfonso has drawn the heads using a bird’s eye view to a worm’s eyes view.

There is a box encasing the head to help us better understand how perspective comes into play when drawing the head from these different angles.

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Discover these free websites offering a range of portrait photographs and take your illustrations to the next level

Studying the shapes, lighting, proportions, and details of real-life models is one of the best ways to practice your drawing skills. We can also rely on photographs, which is often a more convenient way of working with different subjects.

This is especially the case when it comes to portrait drawing. If you find good references, you’ll have a continuous stream of inspiration that allows you to practice drawing faces with a range of unusual features. We have compiled this list of the best websites for sourcing different faces so you can practice your portrait drawing skills.

LIFE Photo Archive

If you would like to focus on drawing notable faces from history, this archive created by LIFE magazine (and developed together with Google) offers up millions of photographs. It contains material from key moments in politics and entertainment, all of which have been shot using incredible lighting and interesting angles. This collection is limited to non-commercial use.

Portraits from Pexels

This popular stock photo site has a collection of more than 10 thousand portraits. You can search by categories, such as models, men, or women. Most of the portraits have an editorial feel, which you might find useful if you are planning to add color and texture to your drawings.

Mark Michaelson Collection

This is, without doubt, one of the most interesting websites on our list. Photographer Mark Michaelson has collated a collection of photos taken of people when they were arrested. You will find peculiar faces with often moving or surprising expressions.

Folio Montreal

This fashion website offers a great range of faces, featuring editorial portraits shot by well-known photographers, which feature hundreds of different models. This resource is great for drawing the same person making different expressions, or practicing front, profile, and three-quarter views.

This Person Does Not Exist

Some may find this website disturbing. Every face that appears on this website has been created by artificial intelligence that was developed by Nvidia researchers. You will likely find it surprising just how realistic each portrait seems, despite being generated by an algorithm. To see a new portrait, just refresh the page. You will also find information about how the site works.

Portraits on Freepik

This popular site of diverse design resources has a collection of more than 1.3 million portraits. You can select different categories to filter your results, such as gender or age. Be warned that a lot of the portraits available on this website are your typical stock-style images: in other words, the poses and expressions are not very natural-looking.


This website is a Flickr search engine. When you enter search terms, you'll bring up all the images that have been uploaded with those tags. Searching for the word “portrait” returns more than 2.4 million results. Click on each image to discover its usage rights.

CC Search

This is a search engine for Creative Commons-licensed images. When you search for the term “portrait,” you will bring up more than 10,000 images. Each image includes information about the usage rights. You can filter your search results by source, aspect ratio, author, etc, using the menu on the left.

Portraits on Unsplash

The artistic styles of the work shared on this platform are what make it stand out. In Unsplash’s collection of portraits, which can be used in exchange for a credit, you’ll find interesting images and collections shot mainly in black and white by specialist portrait photographers. If you use the advanced filters, you can search the collection by age, gender, and much more.

Sours: https://www.domestika.org/en/blog/6923-10-free-websites-for-sourcing-reference-images-for-drawing-portraits
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Frequently Asked Questions

Are there any female face drawing reference paintings?

We collected 36+ Female Face Drawing Reference paintings in our online museum of paintings - PaintingValley.com. Cartoon Female Face ... Face, Body Help To D... Face Character Sketc... Female Head Diagram ... Drawn Horns Female H... Face Drawing Referen...

What kind of art can you use as a reference?

Figure Art Drawing, Painting, Sculpture, Digital Art, Animation, Graphic Novels, Comics are all possible using Art Models photos as a reference.

When to use a face as a reference?

Use the face mesh as a scale reference, for example when you're creating objects like glasses or hats that you'll track to the face. Using this mesh as a reference will mean objects are the right size when you import them into Spark AR Studio. Use 3D software to move the points in this object, to distort the shape of the mesh.

Are there any reference photos for drawing figures?

If you are learning how to draw the figure, this huge catalog of pose reference photos will give you loads of material from which to practice. Seasoned artists will find life drawing figures for all kinds of work; personal projects and those for sale.

Sours: https://useenglishwords.com/results/art-reference-faces/
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Drawing References and Resources

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Interesting Content's insight:

As you can probably tell from the title, this guide is about drawing the eyes, lips and nose. 

Interesting Content's insight:

This simplified reference guide explains the anatomy of the human face and proportions of different facial features. If you're looking for a quick guide for your portrait drawings, this is it.

Interesting Content's insight:

This comprehensive reference guide will help you improve your portrait drawings and give you a better understanding of  the anatomy of the human head. It includes tips about skeletal structure, facial proportions, and facial muscle groups.

Sours: http://www.drawingreferences.com/?tag=face+drawing+reference

Art reference faces

How to Draw Expressive Faces


Magdalena Proszowska, or simply Magda Proski, is a popular artist well-known for her stylized, eye-catching portraits and illustrations. She is working as a Senior Concept Artist in the German-based Ubisoft studio, currently fully involved in “The Settlers” game title. She joins her love for storytelling and world creation in expressive illustrations with lifelike characters at the center. Magdalena is a self-taught digital artist, a frequent speaker at local events, and a guest teacher at Game Art universities in Cologne and Dusseldorf in Germany.

Portfolio: https://www.artstation.com/magdaproski



Head construction

The face is one of the most complex objects to paint. It is full of bumps and cavities just like any other dimensional object, but the face also tells stories, invokes emotions, and creates the illusion that there is a real person looking at the viewer from a flat two-dimensional canvas. In the modern world, we are used to seeing photos of people at every corner. Imagine times where photography did not exist – what incredible experience it was to see a painted portrait of a human being!



There are as many ways to construct the human head as there are artists out there. The head and face are made of two types of materials: the hard and unmovable bony skull layered with soft and flexible muscle and fat. The skull can be simplified to just three geometric shapes: an elongated sphere, box, and half-cylinder.



Learn the shape of the skull by heart if you want to improve your portrait skills. This part of the head is unchangeable and similar for everyone. If you can construct a correct-looking skull, you can stylize the face in any possible way and always make it look believable. The skull has just one moving part – the jaw. It has quite a flexible joint; besides opening and closing the mouth, it can also move to the sides and back and forth! Try to make an underbite or grind your teeth to see what I mean.



To make it all possible, our jaw joint became very special. When you open your mouth, the pivot (center of rotation) is not stationary, but your whole jaw moves slightly forward! Place a finger on the side of your cheek where you can feel the bone. Now open and close your mouth to notice the forward and backward movement of the jaw. Now you know why you need to move the chin forward when drawing a person with an open mouth if you want to achieve a believable look.



Dimensions of the face

The skull is very important for the basic construction of the face, but the real likeness of a person is in the shape of the soft tissues attached to the bone. As previously mentioned, the skull is covered by layers of muscles and fat. Some areas are quite thin so you can easily see the shape of the skull beneath it. Other regions are quite thick and will move dramatically with different facial expressions.



The green pattern on the face shows the areas where the skin is the thinnest and you can easily feel bone beneath. Those regions of the face are covered by very thin muscles and a low amount of fat, resulting in minimal changes of shape. Places like the cheeks, lips, and skin around the eyes can change shape a lot depending on the facial expression. It is worth noting that we can still observe surface changes on the green areas due to skin stretching or wrinkling.


After learning about the skull, the second most important thing to remember is how spherical the shape of the face is. The face is not a flat plane that moves in space. It is necessary to keep in mind that all features are placed on the round surface of the head.



Face expressions

When you smile, you do not only lift the corners of your lips up. There is a cascade of muscle movement following the expression to create a real smile on your whole face. The eyebrows, eye shape, wings of the nose, shape of the mouth and much more – all will move depending on the emotion that is expressed.


Observe your friends and make different faces in the mirror to study carefully how different people construct emotions using their faces. You will improve in no time and your drawn characters will become more believable than ever before!


1- Neutral, 2- Joy, 3- Sadness, 4- Shock, 5- Fear, 6- Anger, 7-Disgust


The picture above shows simplified basic emotions with directions of muscle movement (green arrows) and creation of wrinkles (blue lines). If you want to keep your characters looking young do not suggest wrinkles with black lines, as the more wrinkles you draw in lineart on the face, the older/uglier the character will look. Instead, place your attention in the subtle shape of the eyes, eyebrows, and mouth as they have a huge spectrum of possible movement.


Movement of the eye and eyebrow

People often call the eyes “the windows to the soul.” It is true, eyes are extremely an expressive feature of the face. Just eyes by themselves can tell you if a person is smiling, scared, or angry! There are many groups of muscles surrounding the eye. The eyelids can be pulled wide to show whole the iris, or area around eyes can be contracted to squint eyes and create wrinkles. The eyebrows on their own have separate groups of muscles to pull the outer and inner ends – that is why eyebrows can curve up and down and create a wave shape! Additional special muscles can pull both eyebrows together above the bridge of the nose.



Observe the image above. Those are just a few examples of possible eye expressions associated with emotions. J1, J2, and J3 show expressions of joy. The eyebrow is neutral or slightly pulled up. Most importantly, the outer eye corners are squinted and elevated by the cheeks when we smile. The squint makes a real difference between an honest or faked smile.



A1, A2, and A3 are expressions of anger or disgust. The muscles above the bridge of the nose do heavy work here. They pull the eyebrows down and together, creating many wrinkles between the eyebrows and on the bridge of the nose.


F1, F2, and F3 express shock and fear. This is the only expression when you want to show the full iris not overlapped by eyelids. Different eyebrow shapes make wide-open eyes express different emotions, from surprised to horrified.


Movement of the mouth

The lips are surrounded by multiple groups of muscles, giving them an endless arrange of shapes. This allows us not only to express emotions but also let us make a variety of sounds. Below you will find just a few examples typical for expressing joy, fear, and anger. While drawing the mouth, be aware that when the teeth are separated, the chin must be lowered. The top lip can roll up and show the teeth with a delicate curve, like in smile S2 and S3, or with a more aggressive line to express anger and disgust (G1, G2, and G3).


Ever wondered why the corners of the mouth are suggested with a small curved line? The corner of the mouth includes a node (N) to which a lot of muscles are attached. See the S1 diagram. The node is a spherical shape creating a small curve (shadow) at the corner of the mouth.



Mouth muscles can work unsymmetrically. You can smile with just one corner of your mouth. Observe in the mirror how many faces you can make!


Movement of the nose

The nose is an unappreciated feature of emotions, but when treated right, it can add subtle yet important expression to the face. Notice that the nostrils stretch together with the mouth in N4. The nostrils will open wider when you inhale deeply. This can create an intense look on your character like in N5. When angry or disgusted, we wrinkle our nose like in N2 and N3.


N1 – neutral, N2 – disgust, N3 – angry disgust, N4 – shocked, N5 – intense


To conclude this introduction on drawing facial features, don’t be afraid to experiment, mix together different emotions, and create unique expressions for your characters. Most importantly, observe from nature! The mirror is an essential tool for any character artist.


Creating illustrations focused on expressing emotions

Understanding the basics gives you unlimited potential for stylizing your characters. Let’s go back to the beginning of this tutorial where I showed you the basic geometrical construction. Modifying the proportions of those elements allows us to create stylized and believable faces.



Operating with simple geometric shapes also helps you to control the tilt of the head in perspective. I went for a cute character with big eyes and a round face. I increased the size of the middle box and made the half-cylinder shorter. In the next step, I draw a skull fitting those proportions and a full face on top of that.



For a genuine smile, I keep in mind to raise the eyebrows and overlap the lower lid with the cheek. Notice how the stretched mouth lifts the cheek and makes the shape appear rounder.


Sours: https://www.clipstudio.net/how-to-draw/archives/157239
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How to draw a face

Have you always wondered how to draw a face but never known where to start? Then this is the guide for you. We understand that every face is completely different with many features ranging in shapes and sizes, but if you get a good grasp of the basics, you will be able to build up your confidence enough to help you experiment later down the line.

We are going to teach you how to draw a face step-by-step, starting with the initial structure and features and then progressing to emotions and details. We have included plenty of references and specific technique tips to help you along the way. And once you’ve mastered them, jump to our advanced section, where you will find more tips to help you draw expressive and characterful faces. 

Make sure you check out our roundup of the very best how to draw tutorials — from roses to dragons, we have a range of brilliant guides to cater to all your sketching desires. If you are looking for a tool to help you on your drawing journey, then take a look at our line-up of the best lightboxes. 

Click on the icon at the top-right of the image to enlarge it.

How to draw a face

Initial drawings

01. Start with two circles

The first stage in learning how to draw a face is drawing two overlapping circles. Where they intersect is the eye level. From there, put a centre line down the two circles. This gives the basis of the human head. 

02. Add construction lines

Draw two lines slightly in from either side of your circles. These will indicate where the forehead and cheekbones sit. From the centre intersection, place a triangle for the nose and mark out where you want the mouth to go. Then add two triangles for the eyes – these will also help you locate the eyebrows and eye sockets.

03. Explore different proportions

You can experiment with different sized circles to give different head dimensions, perfect for any ideas you have of different faces to draw. The more squashed the circles, the wider and heavy the face, while the more elongated the circles, the longer the head shape.

04. Line up the features

Always remember that the eyes, nose and mouth are on the same plane on the face, otherwise things start to go a bit lopsided and weird! Imagine the facial features are wrapped around a cylinder, so they have a natural curve. 

Position the top of the eyebrow and bottom of the nose so that they’re lined up with the height of the ear. This helps the face look more natural; giving it a flow, and stopping it from feeling flat.

05. Start with the eyes

Your character’s eyes are crucial to conveying the right emotion – a key part of conquering how to draw a face. Try to keep them focused and tell a story with them. Give the top eye a thicker line to indicate a shadow from the eyelid, and add a light source to give them life. Longer and thicker eyelashes create a more feminine look.

06. Add in the nose

Noses can be pretty difficult to get right. I initially create a triangle with a diamond shape for the tip of the nose. From there I draw nostrils, remembering to add line weight and shadow to the bottom of the nose. I keep the details light, adding only what’s needed.

07. Try different lip shapes

I keep a little sketchbook to practise different lip shapes. Study films and TV programmes to see how actors exaggerate their mouths. Experiment and explore different mouth shapes. Try to convey ‘oh’, ‘ah’ and ‘esss’: this will help when you want figures to look like they’re having a conversation.

08. Consider differences between male and female faces

The male face is a harder, angular shape. The female face is softer and rounder in general. For women, try to depict fuller lips, larger eyes and rounder cheeks. These are not hard and fast rules, though – just a guide.

09. Finish with some hair

Of course, learning how to draw a face and head also means learning to draw hair. When drawing a character’s hair, I first create the basic hair shape, noting that the hair is bigger than the scalp. I then add direction to the hair, remembering to draw strokes from the crown of the head. To give hair a more natural appearance, I introduce a sense of weight to the bottom of the shape. Trying drawing the hair shape with a thicker outline and thinner internal lines. This gives it direction.

Advanced Techniques

10. Exaggerate emotions

Once you’ve got the basics it’s time to have some fun with your figures! As a general rule, try to make the character over-act, to really convey the emotion in your drawing. I usually start with a super-quick gesture drawing to capture the emotion I’m after. Look in the mirror and exaggerate your facial features. Try to put feeling into the drawing.

11. Use photo references

When drawing characters, try to get into their mindset: how they’re feeling and where they’re coming from emotionally. Then act out the expression, using a mirror or photo reference to capture the emotion. Always try to get that perfect snapshot moment, and make it look as dynamic as possible.

12. Add creases

Adding facial lines to characters can emphasise an expression, but it’s important to bear in mind the age of the person. The more character lines and emotion lines you depict on a face, the older a character will look. Men usually have harsher lines and females have fewer. Younger characters will have also have fewer lines around the eyes, forehead and mouth. This is a good excuse to put together a reference library of different faces to draw – young and old.

13. Make subtle tweaks

Sometimes, though, subtlety is required. A slightly raised eyebrow or smirk can be very effective. Adding just a touch of emotion or quirkiness to the character can make them feel natural and lifelike.

14. Try new facial expressions

Grab every opportunity to experiment with the expressions. Try to push what you’re used to drawing, and look at yourself in the mirror to see how the face can move. Try and be whacky with the different facial expressions, but be careful not to hold your breath for too long!

15. Explore feature close-ups

Both the eyes and mouth are expressive. A powerful technique when drawing a comic page is to use a close-up of one of them. Consider illustrating an open mouth, snarling teeth or stern lips. Using just one area of the face will really push you to convey the emotion and sell the drawing.

16. Remember body language

While thinking of different faces to draw, you also have to think of the different figures' varied body languages, which will show in the close-up. A tilt of the head or shrug of the shoulders can emphasise an emotion. I draw beyond the panel to check that the body language is working and is anatomically correct. Remember to have fun and try out new things!

This article was originally published in ImagineFX, the world's best-selling magazine for digital artists. Subscribe here.

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Neil is a comic book artist known for his work on Spider-Man, Dark Avengers and Fantastic Four for Marvel Comics, Justice League and Justice League United for DC Comics, and Dr Who and Assassins Creed for Titan Comics.
Sours: https://www.creativebloq.com/digital-art/how-draw-faces-without-reference-21514096

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