TUTO | How to draw Heads and Hair

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34 / F / Lost in the woods
Posted 4/22/08 , edited 4/22/08

Front View

Begin by drawing a large circle. Divide this circle horizontally into thirds, and cut it in half with a vertical line. Do not worry if your horizontal lines don't split the face into even pieces; the proportions will be different depending on the style of face you want to draw, anyway, so its all right if they aren't exact.

Next, draw a little mark (a short line, not a dot) directly beneath the circle. In this particular picture, the distance from the circle to the mark is the same as the length of the lower third portion of the circle. This mark will represent the chin, so make sure it's a short line rather than a dot or the chin will be too pointy. Raising or lowering the chin mark is one way to adjust the shape and appearance of the face. Next, draw two diagonal guidelines. They should be tangent to the sides of the circle, and intersect the edges of the chin mark.

Next, you want to flesh out the face so it isn't so thin. Draw two rounded triangular shapes on each side of the face. Adjusting the thickness of the triangles and the height of the cheekbones (the place where the triangle bends) are ways to alter the shape and appearance of the face and draw different types of characters.

Now that you have the shape of the face down, you will want to add the eyes, nose and mouth. The placement of the eyes varies slightly with each character, but they generally should be located within the lower half of the circle. The nose is about halfway down the lower part of the face (the area below the circle), and the mouth is drawn directly beneath that.

Next, erase those diagonal guidelines and fill in the detail on the eyes. Now you have the basic shape of the face completed, and you can add whatever details you like, such as hair, clothing, jewelry, tattoos, scars, etc.
3/4 View

Begin with a large circle, just like you did with the frontal view, except now rotate all the guidelines up and to the left. This part of the head is a three dimensional sphere, so when you rotate it in any direction, the guidelines should follow the curves of the sphere. Divide the face up horizontally into thirds, and vertically into halves. Of course, because of the angle we are drawing this circle at, the guidelines are not going to divide the shape into equal sections, but just remember that if you rotated this shape back to a front view, it should look the same as in the first step of the tutorial for the frontal view.

Next, extend the curved vertical guideline down the sphere, and select a point beneath the sphere to represent the chin. The distance from the circle to the chin should be a little bit more than the length of the lower third of the circle. Draw two diagonal guidelines tangent to the edges of the circle that intersect the chin mark. Make sure the left guideline is steeper than the right.

To flesh out the face a little more, draw round triangles on the sides of each of the diagonal guidelines. The left side of the face should curve out where it touches the circle, and the curve of the right side should be more gentle and sloping. It may take some practice to get this to look right.

Next, draw the eyes, nose, and mouth. The eyes are located within the lower half of the circle. For more information on how the eyes line up at this angle, go to the anime eye tutorial. All of the features should line up along the central guideline. Do not let your features become lopsided! It won't look right, trust me. The nose generally starts right beneath the eyes, and the mouth right beneath the nose. Notice, though, that the mouth does not extend to the left of the nose; at this angle, most of it stays on the right side of the curved vertical guideline.

Refine the lines a little more, and you have completed drawing the basic shape of the head at a 3/4 angle. From this point, you can add whatever details you like, such as hair, jewelry, etc.

Here are some more heads, drawn at various angles. With every single one, I started with a basic circle and added the guidelines as I did in the previous tutorials (for more info on drawing heads at a profile, such as in the picture at the top left, check out the nose and mouth turorial. The proportions for these faces probably aren't perfect, because the pictures I used as examples had completely different sized features (a lot of them were guys... ^.^).

Of course, there are many other types of characters other than simple anime girls... ^_^ Here is a very small sampling of some other proportions you can try out. They all have the same basic shape, except some of the lines have been lengthened or shortened. In the top left picture, for example, the lower half of the face is longer and thinner, the cheeks are more sharply angled, and the eyes are narrower. On the top right picture, the lower half of the face is much smaller and the eyes are huge. Male faces tend to be longer and more angular, while female faces tend to be smaller and more rounded. Childrens faces, either male or female, are very small and round.



The hair is not a bowl sitting on top of the head.
The hair does not form a perfect circle at the top or back of the head. Even if the hair is tied back, there should be uneaven curves here.
The hair is coming from the scalp in strands. In it's most basic form, they are lines going from the head, outwards - gravity then pulls them downwards. (yes gravity does exist!) While in anime the "strands" aren't shown individually, even when clumped together they flow in a direction. From the head, out.
Bangs and hair rarely forms a strait line when they end.

First, start drawing the hair of the front face first. This is important as it gives the frame of the face. As you can see, there are lots of ways and style to draw it.

Then, after creating the fringe, you can start drawing the rest of the hair. This example shows that the hair is pulled back from behind the fringe line to the back of the head. Because its quite tight, used more lines to emphasise it. Add in small details like shorter strands to make it more lively and show layering to the length of hair. Finally, add the hair that flows down, hanging over her shoulders. TIP: Remember, hair isn't heavy, but it's still effected by gravity!

Next,guy's hair can really change their personality. Longer flowing hair might make him seem perhaps more feminine, emotional, or carefree. Whereas shorter cropped hair or very slicked back hair can make a guy seem more manly, serious, or perhaps irritable. Here is an example of middle length flowing hair. If you draw long or short hair it follows the same rules, start from the front and work with the way the roots grow. If you're having a hard time working out the flow of the hair, study your own, boyfriend/girlfriends, friends hair, or a magazine (no excuses, do your homework (^_^ )

Forming other parts of hairstyles:
Now that you have the basic idea of how a hair style works, I'll show you in more detail how to form great looking hair!

1. This is wavy hair, and pretty common. Often people have very curly hair when it's short, but as it gets longer the weight of the hair tends to pull out some of the curl, and you end up with waves. Add little details on the inside of the waves to create more realistic hair!

2. Curly hair is possibly the hardest to get a grip on drawing due to the details. Forming ringlets like this might take a bit of practice but it's worth it. Add little curly flicks at the bottom for a cute yet realistic look :"3

3. Wavy but more wild, add strands flicking off in different directions to give a hair style a messy fashionable look.

4. Straight hair, very common for Asian people, but can be found in many cultures. The first strand is layered or "chipped" hair, which has a soft end to it, and straight hair that has been cut directly across. They work off the same principle but can both have very different looks.

5. These are clumps of shorter hair, combine this sort of thing together and get a wavy or spiky hair cut. There are also small curls for a short curly hair cut.

Here's a few good examples of how the different hair styles sit, see how they are totally different styles but the sit in a very similar way. I've also drawn examples of hair blowing in the wind for wavy/curly hair and straight hair. With wavy hair it will get messier than the straight but they will both have fly away strands of hair ^_^
So now it's up to you! now remember, the more practice you do, the better you'll get (and the crazier hair styles you can manage!) It will be easier to plan out hair it it will start coming naturally to you so don't fret if you can't get it quite right the first time. If you get a bit lost for ideas, play with your own hair or a friends, look in magazines and on the web, you'll get inspiration in no time!

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30 / F / Germany
Posted 7/12/08 , edited 7/12/08
ooooh that heeelps a loot
11948 cr points
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31 / F / the hidden leaf v...
Posted 10/22/08 , edited 10/23/08
2457 cr points
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31 / M / SomeWheRe... ;)
Posted 12/3/08 , edited 12/4/08
i've been looking for a guide like this... thanks!!!
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29 / F / phil
Posted 12/6/08 , edited 12/6/08
4149 cr points
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29 / F / In my own world :3
Posted 1/23/09 , edited 1/23/09
Wow!!! I think I'm going to use these tutorials more seriously xD thanks!
Posted 1/23/09 , edited 1/24/09
wow.... this is awesome!
166 cr points
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32 / F
Posted 11/26/09 , edited 11/27/09
WOW thanks soooo much i have been looking for a good tutorial for a reeeeaaaaally long time and i found it
14 cr points
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32 / F / Canada
Posted 1/6/11 , edited 1/7/11
Love this
25 cr points
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25 / F
Posted 8/26/12 , edited 8/26/12
Thank you sooooooo much sensei! This will really help me with my drawing!
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