Learning to sculpt heads/faces






It’s been over a year since I posted here. In that time I got a degree and moved country. I want to get back into sculpting. Today I did a head, for the first time in AGES!


This took four hours. It’s meant to look like Harry Dean Stanton. It’s still a dynamesh so you can see some jagged edges - but I’m going for high volume rather than perfection these days. I think it’d be a waste of time to spend another few hours doing all the skin pores rather than another head.


Hopefully you can recognise who this is. I didn’t pay too much attention to the hair, it’s just to give the face some context really.


My housemate.


I spent a while on this one. It started off as a likeness of Michael Caine, but I couldn’t really find enough reference to make it 100% accurate, so I accepted that it wouldn’t look like him.I’m pretty happy with how it turned out. In my opinion the addition of wrinkles, especially the ones on the brow, really add life to the sculpt.

The things to improve are:

  1. the infraorbital furrow is a bit vague, and how it merges into the herniated fat under the eye,
  2. some lumpy-ness around the eyelid and sides of the nostrils - I just need to be more careful,
  3. the distribution and density of wrinkles.


I went for a young face this time. With some polypainting. I may try to render this with displacement and SSS in Max/Vray. I haven’t done it before so it’ll be tough.


nice work, you have made lots of progress especially the heads. I encourage you to continue because I think you have made the harder part wich is the beginning.
I really like the last heads like the old woman, or the young man (last one).
Can I ask you how long (time) do you worked on them ? Are you (always) using references ?

Anyway good work, I hope to see more of you.


Don’t worry, I have no intention of quitting! This improvement process is a very long term project (several years) and I intersperse it with other projects. Right now I’m working on a hard surface project. After that, I’ll come back to this.

Unfortunately I can’t remember how long these took. But I estimate that the last few took 10 - 15 hours. As with learning ANYTHING, speed is not a priority.

I did use reference for the last few heads:
a girl from 3dsk
Harry Dean Stanton
Theresa May
My housemate
Michael Caine
Emma Watson (last one)

On most of these I failed to achieve a likeness. My housemate is the most accurate. I believe this is because I took a huge amount of consistent photos in a controlled environment from specific angles. Rather than mixed resolution photos from online, with random angles, facial expressions and even different ages of the same person!