1. Question on Loomis's head construction method

UPDATED ON 29 Mar 2011:

Pls scroll to bottom of this thread for the latest update. Ignore the rest of this post.

My picture below is self-explanatory:

Last edited by Xeon_OND; March 28th, 2011 at 11:16 PM.

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3. Loomis imagines the x, y and z planes converging at the center point of the sphere and then draws the lines where the three planes intersect with the surface of the sphere.

In the illustration you attached, the sphere is tilted so that the x, y and z planes are all diagonal, but the premise is the same. Three diameters are drawn on the sphere so that they intersect each other at right angles. On an upright head, the middle line of the face as well as the ear line will be vertical and the brow line will be horizontal.

you can see the rest of the drawings from that set here if you haven't already seen them: http://www.scribd.com/doc/501782/And...Head-and-Hands They show the placement of the facial features.

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5. Originally Posted by PsiBug
Loomis imagines the x, y and z planes converging at the center point of the sphere and then draws the lines where the three planes intersect with the surface of the sphere.

In the illustration you attached, the sphere is tilted so that the x, y and z planes are all diagonal, but the premise is the same. Three diameters are drawn on the sphere so that they intersect each other at right angles. On an upright head, the middle line of the face as well as the ear line will be vertical and the brow line will be horizontal.

you can see the rest of the drawings from that set here if you haven't already seen them: http://www.scribd.com/doc/501782/And...Head-and-Hands They show the placement of the facial features.

Thanks Psi!

Ok, I assume

x = brow line
y = middle line
z = ear line

Btw, below are some of my sketches:

Did I draw the earline correctly? My problem is I dunno where to draw it.

I mean, after I've drawn the middle and brow line and have determined where the facial plane is facing, I dunno where to draw the earline (e.g: how far is it from the middle line).

That's my question.

Thanks!
Xeon

*PS* : I've all 3 copies of Loomis books, btw. In PDF format.

6. Here are three tips I've thought of to help explain the method to students over the years:

1. In drawing all three lines, it helps to remember that all are equators, and each is half of an ellipse situated symmetrically within the circle (see attachment).

2. It's a good idea to start with the vertical axis (shown by Loomis as a nail) and decide carefully whether it is the north or the south pole that you see emerging from the sphere, and exactly where that occurs. You then know to drive the middle line and the ear line through that point. You also know to draw the brow line to look like the equator to that pole, so make sure that the axis of its ellipse is at right angles to the vertical axis.

3. When you have the middle line and the brow line, think of the middle line as an equator and look for the point on the brow line that looks like its pole. The ear line has to go through that point too.
Last edited by briggsy@ashtons; September 8th, 2009 at 06:07 AM.

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Before you start on the head, focus on just drawing a ball. In this case something like a basketball, or a round ball that you can draw these lines on as guides. Maybe a styrofoam ball that you can push a rod or dowel through as the center axis. A toy action figure head might also be helpful. Study the real thing before you try and abstractly visualize it on paper.

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10. Originally Posted by briggsy@ashtons
2. It's a good idea to start with the vertical axis (shown by Loomis as a nail) and decide carefully whether it is the north or the south pole that you see emerging from the sphere, and exactly where that occurs. You then know to drive the middle line and the ear line through that point. You also know to draw the brow line to look like the equator to that pole, so make sure that the axis of its ellipse is at right angles to the vertical axis.
Thanks Briggsy! Now that's clearer a bit, but I still have 1 question:

The very first thing we do when drawing heads....do we start drawing the "nail" at any direction or location, since it's main purpose is only to establish the middle and ear line? Yes / No

Thanks!

11. Originally Posted by dbclemons
Before you start on the head, focus on just drawing a ball. In this case something like a basketball, or a round ball that you can draw these lines on as guides. Maybe a styrofoam ball that you can push a rod or dowel through as the center axis. A toy action figure head might also be helpful. Study the real thing before you try and abstractly visualize it on paper.
Oh yeah, I'm gonna get a ping-pong ball and then use marker pen to draw on it. (ping pong ball = those small blank balls used for table tennis)

12. Originally Posted by Xeon_OND
The very first thing we do when drawing heads....do we start drawing the "nail" at any direction or location, since it's main purpose is only to establish the middle and ear line? Yes / No
No. You put it in carefully to register your exact decision on whether the head you are drawing is tilting towards/away from you, and to one side or the other.

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14. One thing that I think will help you a lot is learning to draw ellipses in perspective. The lines you are drawing across the surface of the sphere are just the visible segments of the ellipses produced by intersecting a plane and a sphere. In Biggs' example he filled in where the internal "circle" would be, but because they are in perspective if that ball is tilted or the view is something other than straight on, they are squashed. There's a lot of technical stuff around getting a circle properly in perspective, but one of the most helpful tips I ever read regarding the matter was this: A circle in perspective, will be distorted symmetrically, perpendicular to it's "direction". That sounds complicated but basically think of it this way. Imagine the ellipse is the end of a cylinder. You should be able to draw a line through that ellipse in the direction of the cylinder, and that the shapes on either side of that line (the two halves of the ellipse) should be symmetrical. Basically you should be able to "fold" the ellipse along the line of that imaginary cylinder over on itself and it should match. Another thing that will help make the lines on your sphere more accurate is "drawing through." As in draw the entire ellipse in perspective, even the parts hidden behind the sphere, as thought the sphere were transparent, or translucent. This will help you see when your lines are off, as the ellipse will be off.

Hope I didn't just make things more confusing

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16. Thanks Biggs and Cthogua!

Ok, that helps to clear things up slightly further. I'll practice drawing these and try to figure them out, and also get my ping pong ball today.

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It's me again...sorry for being gone so long...I myself don't understand the "ball/plane method" myself.

Why is the first important line the brow line instead of the eye line, for one thing?

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19. Originally Posted by Rock Martin
It's me again...sorry for being gone so long...I myself don't understand the "ball/plane method" myself.

Why is the first important line the brow line instead of the eye line, for one thing?
Because the brow line is where the horizontal center of a head is (that is, if you look at another person's head face to face).

20. Hi guys,

Didn't want to start a new thread, so I've revived this old thread.

I've now started on Loomis head construction again and although I now have a better grasp of the concept compared to the time when this original thread was made, I'm still facing some issues.

I've been trying to find solutions like a mad man, holed up in my room for weeks until I'm going nuts, and I've no choice but to seek help here. I need help real bad.

My biggest problem now is with regards to when the head is titled up.

1) When the head is titled up, how do you connect the bottom of the chin / jaw area correctly to the neck?

2) When the head is looking up all the way such that the brow line is hidden from view, how do you estimate the distances for the placement of the bottom of the nose, the mouth and the chin? I've tried to draw through the sphere so that I can "see-through" how far the distances go on the other side of the sphere, but it's all totally based on random lottery guesswork. It's not even estimation.

3) How do you even know how much of the bottom of the jaw ("the canopy of jaw" area) to show?

Below is a construction of a normal head pose slightly titled one side:

I can still manage this sort of angle and other angles, everything except "looking-up" poses.

When the head is looking up, like this: and this, that's when I start to really screw things up badly.

Look at these 3 head drawings I did of the head looking up, based on references. You can see that the jaw area is WRONG, WRONG, WRONG!!! Without references, my bottom of jaw area will look worse.

I've also read and re-read all the Loomis-related threads in CA. I've looked at almost every head construction approach out there to look for clues in solving these 2 questions, from E.M. Gist to Loomis to Ron Lemen to Mentler to Bridgeman to Michael Hampton to KChen to Vilppu / Sheldon and to even Steve Huston, but none of them really show the procedures of how to connect the chin to the neck when the head is looking up.

Vilppu and Sheldon seems to draw the head using ovals, but they don't really show how to figure out the ear line like Loomis or how to draw the head in extreme tilts using ovals, so I gave up on their approach. Hampton didn't really go into detail in his book, while Steve Huston's method doesn't allow you to construct heads from imagination like Loomis. I believe same goes for Reilly.

Kevin Chen's head drawing notes are good, in that he uses a cylinder to explain the foreshortening etc., but from the diagrams on his notes alone, I can't figure out how he construct the head in extreme tilts and join the jaw correctly to the neck. From his diagram, I think he seems to have some solid solution to accurately drawing the head and the placement of the features from any angle, but too bad I can't attend his classes.

I've also looked at some neck anatomy but it seems irrelevant to this case at hand and it's like I'm sinking deeper and getting more overwhelmed the more info I try to look up.

I've also tried using a cylinder to construct the head instead of using Loomis' spheres, but I can't find working examples of this anywhere, and using cylinders for head construction will give lots of problems during the later stages (sculpting of planes and melding the spherical cranial mass to a cylinder), so I've decided to stick to Loomis.

Pls save me from the darkness. Any help or advice or guidance would be greatly appreciated!
Xeon

21. Look in a mirror, tilt your head back. Take a picture.

Or, buy a cheap skull and tilt it upwards.

Remember to draw through your object to obtain 3d effect.

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23. You're gonna have to eyeball it and see it as it is. And draw through the form, and use straight lines to see things in terms of plane. I think you're just going to need to drop all these construction systems for now and figure one out for yourself, so you can actually understand the planes and form. You're just drawing symbols as I see it. Keep perspective in mind, like in that upturned, front view, the hinge of the jaw is about horizontally level with the lips in 3D space, so by looking beneath them, they shouldn't be horizontally level in 2D with the effects of perspective. Also since you're looking beneath it, the plane of the jaw is going to be going to be level with you, so it's going to be closer to a straight line. And in the upturned, 3/4 view, the perspective is skewed because if you extended lines through the hinges of the jaw and the brow in your drawing, they won't converge. Again, I think you're just being way too formulaic, without actually understanding the form and how these systems convey them, really, it's all just knowing the form itself and understanding perspective.
Last edited by stabby2486; March 29th, 2011 at 12:30 AM.

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