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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
Anime Style Heads
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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
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.
Anime Style Heads
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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
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. Anime Style Heads http://www.animeextreme.com/julie/head.html (4 of 5) [3/7/2000 13:29:51] If you have any questions, or think I need to explain something in more detail, please email me. This page is created and maintained by Julie Dillon. All material is copyright by their respective owners. If you have any questions, comments, et cetera, please send them here. Arigatou gozaimasu! This site © 1998, 1999 by Julie Dillon. All rights reserved. Anime Style Heads http://www.animeextreme.com/julie/head.html (5 of 5) [3/7/2000 13:29:51] Facial Expressions Changing the expression of an anime character isn’t particularly difficult, but it helps to know which features need to be adjusted for each type of emotion. In this tutorial, I will show you how the various parts of the face work together to convey different emotions. Once you learn what features to change to achieve the look you want, you should be able to draw any emotion you like. Please read through my other facial tutorials, though, since it helps to have a working knowledge of how the features should be aligned before you begin. I’m going to start by showing you how to draw a sad face. Mildly happy characters are found all over my other tutorials, so I’m not going to cover those here. 😉 The major deciding factor of the expression of a character is the eye. In this picture, the irises are very large, the eyebrows are angled upwards towards the center of her face, and the lower eyelid has been curved upwards. Raising the lower eyelid can help to convey a variety of strong emotions, from happiness to sadness to anger. The size of the irises can change the expression more than one would think; very large irises, such as the ones shown here, can make the character seem more upset, while very small irises (as shown in one of the pictures below) can put added fury into the eyes of an angry character. Oh, and I didn’t draw them here, but added light glares can also make the character seem more emotive. The mouth also helps determine the mood of your character. In this picture, the mouth is kept small and curves downwards. All the elements put together make this character seem sad, maybe even somewhat shocked, like someone just hit her with some really bad news or said something mean… ^^
This form of sadness is more subdued. The character seems
depressed, but not as sad as the previous example. The eyes are
smaller here (partly because this is a guy ^^), and the mouth is larger and does not curve down so far. The angle of the eyebrows and the arch of the lower eyelid still let you know that this character is upset about something. This picture is sort of a transition between sadness and anger. The eyebrows curve down sharply and his mouth is drawn so it looks like he is shouting, both of which indicates that he is mad, yet his irises are still very large. This sort of makes him look like he is angry, yet hurt or upset at someone or something. Expressions http://www.animeextreme.com/julie/expressions.html (1 of 4) [3/7/2000 13:30:05] This guy is clearly very ticked off, even though he isn’t shouting. ^~ You can draw angry people without them
screaming their heads off. In this picture, the eyebrows
are close to the eyes and angle down sharply (I also
drew the folds in the skin caused by drawing ones
eyebrows together like that), and the mouth angles
downwards sharply. The eyes have been narrowed, and
irises are very small, which helps to make a character
look even more angry. ^^ I’m not sure about this one; he looks both confused and ticked off. Alternating the angles of the eyebrows like this indicates confusion or incredulity. To add to the expression, draw the mouth slightly off-center, as well. Its surprising how often anime characters talk with their eyes closed… ^^ I wonder how many people actually talk like that…?
Anyway, closed eyes can express a variety of emotions. Here, they
express impatience or annoyance, but they can also express
calmness, happiness, or smugness. Flip the eyes around and have
them curve upwards, and they can express extreme sadness, as well
as excitement. For this particular picture, I made the eyebrows angle
downwards and drew the mouth open. Notice how I drew the upper
left lip slightly raised; this helps whatever emotion you are trying to
convey seem more negative, whether you are drawing anger,
unhappiness, or impatience. ^^ Happiness is one of the most common emotions you see with pictures of anime characters. Excessive happiness or excitement can be expressed by large eyes, highly arched eyebrows, and a big smiling mouth. Other features such as extra shinies in the eyes and the upward curving of the lower eyelid are also common. On a side note, more kawaii characters tend to have huge eyes, and small noses and mouths (unless their mouth is open, as in this picture). Expressions http://www.animeextreme.com/julie/expressions.html (2 of 4) [3/7/2000 13:30:05] This character is happy, as well, but not to the extent as in the previous example. The emotion is much more subtle. Notice that the eyebrows have been lowered (though they still arch slightly) and the curve of the mouth is very slight. The lower eyelids are arched, though, and the irises are still pretty large, so though the characters’ contentment is not as obvious, it is still clear he’s in a good mood. ^^
To express surprise or shock, enlarge the eyes and make the
pupils smaller. This is particularly apparent in anime face faults,
when a character is so suprised that his/her eyes become almost as
large as the rest of the face… ^^ In this particular example, the mouth is drawn really small, but other sizes will work too. This guy isn’t particularly exciting, he just looks irritated. The irises are small, the eyebrows are arched down, and the mouth is small and slightly off center. I can’t think of much else to say for this one… ^^
If you have any questions, or think I need to explain something in more detail, please
This page is created and maintained by Julie Dillon.
All material is copyright by their respective owners.
http://www.animeextreme.com/julie/expressions.html (3 of 4) [3/7/2000 13:30:05]
If you have any questions, comments, et cetera, please send them here.
This site © 1998, 1999 by Julie Dillon. All rights reserved.
http://www.animeextreme.com/julie/expressions.html (4 of 4) [3/7/2000 13:30:05]
Anime Style Hair
I have often heard artists tell me about difficulties they’ve had with drawing anime style hair. In this
section, I will show you some examples of basic hair styles. I know this section is not nearly thorough
enough, but I’m not quite sure what else to do with it. If you have any helpful suggestions, please email
me. ^^ Okay, lets start with something simple. Basic anime hair consists of two main sections: the bangs in the front of the face that hang down over the eyes, and the larger back portion of the hair that hangs down around the shoulders. This hairstyle is very basic, with big rounded bangs coming down over the front of the face, with the rest of the hair resting where the shoulders would be. In these pictures, you can see how the hair sits on the head; always make sure that the hair is large enough for the head to sit underneath; I’ve seen some pictures where the artist drew the hair too small because he/she forgot to take into account the size of the head beneath the hair… ^^
There are several variations
you can do with this basic
shape. Changing the length
and position of the bangs and
the shape of the main portion
of the hair can let you
experiment with a variety of
hair styles. In the top left
picture, the hair is very
angular rather than rounded,
Anime Style Hair
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and bangs and main section
are almost indistinguishable.
In the middle picture, the
bangs are large and wavy;
notice how they rise high
above forehead. The rest of
the hair is pulled back in a
ponytail. In the bottom
picture, all the hair is pulled
back behind the head except
for a few long strands of the
bangs, which hang down on
the sides of the face. Anime
characters are well known for
their gravity-defying hair
styles, so its okay if the hair
curves and arches
unnaturally. ^~ Here are some examples of hair that has been pulled back. In all three cases, though the hair is bunched up in a ponytail, it is still very thick. On the top picture, you can see that the hair goes down the back of the neck, it doesn’t just stop at the back of the head. A lot of times strands of hair stick out or drape down from over the ears, so you may want to add those. Anime Style Hair http://www.animeextreme.com/julie/hair.html (2 of 4) [3/7/2000 13:30:18] Braids are another common problem area. They really aren’t that difficult, though. You can make them as detailed or simplistic as you like. On the left picture, I drew intersecting inverted teardrop shapes to represent the woven strands of hair. The bottom is tied off, and frays out slightly. The picture on the right is just a series of blunt overlapping diamonds. Simple, but you can still tell what it is. ^^
Here are a few more examples of different hair
styles. Look at other anime pictures on the
internet and study the styles, as well. It takes a
lot of practice to be able to draw the really
detailed flowing hair, so right now practice just
getting the shape of the hair to look right.