View Full Version : character: Human Head!

06 June 2003, 10:19 PM
Hey there!

so... here's the story. I just finished 9:th grade and have a nice long summerholiday, so I'm hoping to learn how to model a human head :)

This was my first attempt for the summer (about the third ever for me, but that's not important...)

I used wings3D to model, because I like it.

I've got some... questions abot the whole head modeling thing aswell:

1.This particular head looks like it belong to a, umm... 16-20 year old dude, how can I make him look older, and what is making him look so young?

2. I'm not pleased at all with the head myself, but I can't put my finger on what's wrong, so... what's so wrong?

screen caps from wings:

and a wire, a rather messy one I might add...

it's a wip by the way.

so, I hope that it's not required to be a pro to post in this area. I posted here because I really wanted pure advice about this whole headcase.

06 June 2003, 10:32 PM
Hey KalasFixaren,

The best way to model a head (especially the first time), is to have a good reference. May we please see the reference pic? Front and side will do.


06 June 2003, 10:35 PM
To have an older haed try removing the blowned look from the side view. I mean It looks a bit baloony. What I might suggest is getting an anatomic book as a reference. To look old you need creases. Some veins. Some wrinkles. Pouches under the eyes. Cheak lines. Extruded jaw.

The more you accentuate those, the older he will look. I'd be carefull to place the point at the end of the mouth so that the end of the lips fade into the face. And bring the nose in the face alot. Work on the angle of the nose holes etc. Give an almand like shape to the eyes with a place for the little red thing in the corner of the eye. (sorry I'm french)

The nose feels too boxy too.

And be shure to assimitrise the face. No one on earth has a face that is a perfect miror of it self.

Hope this all helps!

Dave Black
06 June 2003, 10:35 PM
You're proportions are totally off. That's primarily what's wrong with it.

The eyes are too far apart. Try to keep one eye width between them.

The nose is both too wide, and also way too far down on the face.

The chin is too thin in contrast with the rest of the face.

Try looking up the "Human Head Canon", or "the canon of the human head".

The human body and face is all about proportions. The structures themselves can look fine alone, but it is the extreme subtly of their relationships that define them as human.


06 June 2003, 10:36 PM
I am by no means a professional; I am still modelling a human heads myself, and it takes a lot of practice. But from what I have experienced, I can give you the following advice.

1. Use image planes. If you look at the profile, the neck is to thick, and the face is somewhat elongated like that of a mule or reptile. While you can tell it has human characteristics, it looks more humaniod than human.
2. The eyes are too far apart.
3. The neck comes out too far in the jawline.
4. The pectoral muscles are too small for the rest of the body. Proportions are an issue.
5. The cheekbones... are visible in the front view, but not side.

Nice edge loops for the eyes and mouth though.

Go to and look at some front and profile views of humans. Use these when you model. You might want to pull the face back a little, perhaps by scaling it so it doesn't have such a downward sloping angle.

Once again, you should use image planes or sometype of reference pictures... which I am assuiming you did not. The best way to start is by being well prepared.

Hope that helps.


06 June 2003, 10:47 PM
First off, your doing pretty well. The mesh has basic edgeloop structure which is good. (check out the TOPOLOGY THREAD ( for more), then there's Wiro's Head Tut ( which should work nicely with wings.

Nose. This s a big problem area. If you have a problem with facial features be sure to have a mirror handy. Check your own nose out. Use your hands to get a greater sense of depth. Does the base of your nose extend smoothly out to the bridge (crest, what do they call that?)? No. It should begin roughly around the same place as the cheekbones.

Also notice the severly projecting area right at the nostrils, this is too far forward for a non-distorted face (not to say that such people do not exist, its just not within the limitations of the norm)

Eyes should be one eye width apart, and the face roughly 5 eyewidths wide.

Study your anatomy. Dont be afraid to start over to get it right. The basic proportions should be down before you add detail.

06 June 2003, 10:58 PM

All of the problems with this model come from the fact that your knowledge of human anatomy is rather underdeveloped. Pick up a good anatomy book, perhaps by Andrew Loomis and study the human form, watch people in real life and even make sketches if you like. Drawing the human body is the best way to understand its subtle details. Then take that knowledge to the computer and you'll quickly become a master.

Here is the link to one of Loomis' books:

Keep up the good work!


06 June 2003, 11:04 PM

06 June 2003, 11:11 PM
We were told to help.... so here's a helping link.

06 June 2003, 11:16 PM
Just want to mention that nature isn't "perfectly canonized" and by following the canons that we either identify in others or in the anatomy books, you will lose some of the quirky features of the diverse shapes and forms of the human head.

In regard to your model; I think his neck is too thick, specifically in the front under the jawbone.

An other thing I'd like to point out, is the tip of the jawbone, which seem a little to small imho.

06 June 2003, 12:18 AM
The pects look odd. They need to be more spread out at the top. If I were him I would fire his personal trainer. Also the part of the neck where the shoulders taper up to the head. That part should be moved back more. The muscle that is there is part of the back (the trapizius I believe?) It's not really in the center it's coming off the back and the back of the shoulders. Hey it's a good start though!

Tim Deneau
06 June 2003, 04:01 AM
I strongly suggest buying The Artist's Complete Guide to Facial Expression (Gary Faigin). A better understanding of the human head will drastically improve your work. Anatomy books in general are great, but they usually can't cover the complexity of the face.

Pay attention to detail, don't let your memory fill in the places you don't quite understand. The lips are a clear example of this, you have abstracted a complex form. The bottom lip should make a smooth transition into the chin (there is only a difference in texture) and in the center it is actually concave. The corners of the mouth tuck down and under, they do not meet sharply.

Study more and you'll be set.

06 June 2003, 07:56 AM
Fantastic critisism! :applause: Thank you so much!

I did use a reference, but I think that I forgot to turn on ortographic view while working with it ;)

hmm, I guess I'll start over, but first I'll go through all the nice links you've posted, and I'll be sure to keep everything that you guys have said in mind.

And I'll consider buying an anatomy book too, but it's expensive :annoyed:

I'll be sure to post my next head aswell!

Thanks again for the great critique, you guys told me alot of stuff I had no idea about

06 June 2003, 03:02 PM
Check this out before grabbing an anatomy book. Its already been sorta posted, (the site) but its a scanned anatomy book from a master. HERE (

06 June 2003, 06:14 AM
You really need to look better at your references. The proportions are way off.

If you are having trouble getting the reference to look right on the viewport, there are tons of good tutorials on thenet on how to do it. Just look up "modeling head" in google.

07 July 2003, 11:40 PM
I'm back from the dead

A new head now. umm, it's about 3 and 1/2 hours work so far. I'm not thrilled about the front view but as usual... can't put my finger on what's wrong, I'm thinking along the lines of cheeks

anyways, here:

the messy mesh...

I feel like a hopeless case :D

07 July 2003, 10:28 PM
Guess who's back? ;)

well... I've updated the head above a little. As usual they are screen caps from wings3D, I would render it, but I can't because I'm not at home... And the computer I'm using is veeery bad, I doubt it has a graphic card ;) so try to look past those weird bugs in the smoothed one...

anyways, I'd really appreciate your help with the head...

I think I'll take on the ears now, so I have the general shape there...

PS. Sorry for the quality of the pics, bad compression...

edit: If pics aint working, right click them and press properties and copy and past the address...

08 August 2003, 09:52 AM
your latest updates aren't showing...:)

08 August 2003, 10:50 AM
I guess I'll pull of ye old attachment trick then :)

08 August 2003, 10:58 AM
crap... Can't get two views in one picture, file size gets too big :)


08 August 2003, 11:00 AM

08 August 2003, 11:04 AM
wire will come when I've fixed my website...

there we go... It might work now

08 August 2003, 10:03 AM
its looking good :)

the only thing that seems to bother me is the head is egg shaped when you view it from the front.
what you should do is either give the cheeks a bit more defination from the front.

but its getting there.

CGTalk Moderation
01 January 2006, 12:00 PM
This thread has been automatically closed as it remained inactive for 12 months. If you wish to continue the discussion, please create a new thread in the appropriate forum.