have proved to yourself to be right. It is my job here to give you the working materials with which to make your own effort successful rather than to show that anyone can succeed. Success comes only with personal effort» aided by whatever knowledge the individual can apply along with the effort. If this were not true, we would be able to do anything in the world simply by reading books. We all know this is not true. There are books on almost any subject. Their value depends upon the amount of knowledge they contribute and on how well it is absorbed and put into practice.
To draw heads well, the artist must detach his mind from the sitters emotional qualities and develop an objective viewpoint. Otherwise he could go on drawing the same head forever, almost each moment noting a subtle change of expression, or a different mood in the subject. One face can vary in a thousand ways, and a drawing must show the effect of a single instant. I^et him think of the head as only so much form in space, like a piece of still life rather than as an ever-changing personality.
To the beginner there is a certain advantage in drawing from a cast, or from a photograph, for at least the subject is not moving and he can regard it objectively. It is logical that our book begin purely from an objective approach with a form most like the average head, with average features and average spacings. Individual characteristics arc much too complicated until we are able to tie them into a basic structufc, one that is reasonably sound and accurate. Let us fix in our minds that the skull itself is the structure and all the rest merely trimmings.
Anatomy and construction can appear dull, but not to the builder. It might be dull to learn how to use a saw and hammer, but not when you are making a building of your own. It may be hard to think of the head as a mechanism. But if you were inventing a mechanism, it would never lack interest. Just realize that the head must be a good mechanism in order to be a fine head, and you will draw it with as much interest
\D AND HANDS
as you would have in putting a part into a motor which you wanted to give a good performance.
It is evident, then, that we need to start with a basic shape that is as nearly like the skull as we can get it. Looking at the cranium, we see it most nearly like a ball, flattened at the sides and somewhat fuller in the back than the front. The bones of the face, including the eye-sockets, the nose, the upper and lower jaw, are all fastened to the front of this ball. Our first conccrn is to be able to construct the ball and the facial plane so that they operate as one unit which may be tipped or turned in any manner. It is of utmost importance that we construct the head in its complete and solid form, rather than just the visible portion of it. Naturally we cannot see more than half the head at any time. From the standpoint of construction, the half we cannot see is just as important as the visible half.
If you look at Plate 1, you will note that I have treated the ball as if the under half were transparent so that the construction of the whole ball is made evident. In this way the drawing On the visible side of the head can be made to appear to go all the way round, so that the area we cannot see can be imagined as a duplicate of what we do see. An old instructor of mine once said. "Be able to draw the unseen ear," which, at the time, puzzled me no end. I later realized what he meant. A head is not drawn until you can feel the unseen side.
It must be obvious from the preceding that it is impossible to draw the head correctly by starting with an eye or nose, oblivious of the skull and the placement of features within it. One might as easily try to draw a car by starting with the steering wheel. In all drawing no part can be as important as the whole, and the whole is always a fitting together of proportionate parts. We can always sulxlividc the whole into its parts, instead of guessing at the parts, hoping they will go together in the proper proportions. For example, it is easier to know that the forehead is one-third of the face, and what its position is on the skull, than to build the skull from
PLATE 1. The basic shape is a flattened boll
The cranium is more like a ball than anything eke. To represent the ball as a solid sphere, we must establish an axis, like the nail through the ball at the top. Through the centers established by the axis, we can divide the ball into quarters and again at the equator. Now if we were to slice off a fairly thin slice on each side, we will have produced a basic shape that very closely matches the cranium. The "equator" bccomcs the brow line. One of the lines through the axis becomes the middle line of the face. About halfway up from the brow line to the axis, we establish the hairline, or the top of the face. We drop the middle line straight down off the ball. On this we mark off two points about equal to the space of the forehead, or from brow line to hairline. This gives us the length of the nose, and below that the bottom of the chin. We can now draw the plane of the face by drawing in the jaw line, which connects about halfway around the ball on each side. The ears attach along the halfway line (up and down) at a distance about equal to the space of from the brows to the l>ottom of the nose. The ball can be tipped in any direction.
PLATE 2. The all-important cross on the boll
The "pross," or the point the re the bmw fag posses the mfc^C MflC 9f the .face,\ is the key point of the construction of the whole head. It determines the position of the facial plane on the ball, or the angle from which wc see the face. It is easily spotted on the model or copy. By continuing the line up and down, we establish the middle line of the whole head. Wc draw the two sides of the facc and head from this line. By continuing the brow line around the head wc can locate the cars.
the forehead. Perhaps we have always thought of the head so much in terms of belonging to a definite individual that we have never considered it in a mechanical sense. It perhaps never occurs to us that a smile is a mechanical principle in action, as well as evidence of a beaming personality. Actually the mechanics involved in a smile arc the same as those used in a drawstring on a curtain. The string is attached to something fixed at one end, and to the material at the other. Pulling the string buckles the material. The cheek plumps out in the same way. The working of the jaw is like a hinge or a derrick, but the hinge is of the ball-and-socket type. The eyes roll in their sockets like a ball bearing held in place. The eyelids and the lips arc like slits in a rubber ball, which naturally close except when they are pulled apart. There is a mechanical principle !>cncath every expression put into action by the brain. Underlying the flesh of the face arc muscles which arc capable of expansion and contraction, just like all the other muscles of the body. We discuss this interesting material in more detail later.
We start drawing the head by establishing points on the ball and on the facial plane. Both the ball and the facial plane must l>e sulxlividcd in order to establish those points. No matter how much you draw, how skilled you get to be, how well trained your eye becomes, you will always have to begin by building the head correctly, just as a carpenter, no matter how long he has worked, always measures a Ixxard before he cuts it. Const ruction of the face and head depends upon establishing the points of measurement. Any other way is l>ound to l>e guesswork, which is a gamble any way you take it. For the one time you guess right, there are many inevitable mistakes.
The most important point in the head from which to build the construction of the face is the point immediately^aboyo thc bridge of the nose, between the brows. This point remains always fixed and is indicated by the vertical line of the nose and the crossline of the brows. On the ball this is the junction of the "equator and "the prime meridian." the two lines that cut the ball in half vertically and horizontally. All meas-mvmeiUs spring from this point. About halfway up from .this point to the top center of the head we get the hairline, and have therefore spaced off the forehead. Dropping down an equal distance below the crosspoint. we get the length of the nose, since the distance from the tip of the nose to the brows is. on an average, equal to the height of the forehead. Measuring the same distance down, we got the lx>ttom of the chin, for the distance from the bottom of the chin to the base of the nose equals the space from there to the brows, and from that point to the hairline. So it s one, two, three spaces, ail equal, down the middle line of the face. See Plates 3 and 4. I suggest you take paper and pencil and start drawing these heads, tipping them in every possible direction. This can well be your first real period of study. What you do now will affect everything you do from here on. Plate 4 will give you an idea of how to place the features properly. The placement is more important than the drawing of the features themselves. At this stage it is not too important that the details of the features be correct. Get them to fall within the construction lines, so that the two sides of the face seem to match, whatever the viewpoint.
The next time you work with this book, turn to Plate 5, which is a simplified statement of the bone structure. No one detail of the bone structure is of great importance, but its total shape is of paramount importance. Within the shape we must locate the eye-sockets, spacing them carefully on either side of the middle line. We locate the two cheekbones opposite each other, and the bridge of the nose, which must lie on the middle line at the top and extend out from the middle line at the bottom. We locate the corner of the jaw and bring the jaw line down to the chin. Every head must be constructed so that all the features balance on the middle line. Plate 6 gives you more of the actual appearance
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