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Thread: Andrew Loomis Head Drawing Question

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    Andrew Loomis Head Drawing Question

    Hello,

    I think everyone knows Loomis and his famous ball aproach to construct the proportions of the head correctly. I studied the Loomis books before but after an unsuccessful portrait drawing I decided to go over it again and brought the books down from the shelf.

    Well, in short, I realized that, I am unable how to correctly get a slice from the sides of the sphere as Loomis does. Does anyone know how to get the slice from the sides of the sphere out perfectly? I believe the portion of the slice that you take out is crucial about correctly structuring the whole head. If the slice is narrow the face looks so wide if the slice is wide the face looks narrow. The slice must be taken out in a way that the face looks not narrow nor wide. Does anyone one know the trick? Thanks.
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    THe goal is to use it as a guide to show you the top front and side planes of the head. Even loomis doesn't use it exactly the same way every time. You have to use it in conjunction with observation or other theory like width to height measurements for accuracy. Once you learn proportion well enough you can forego all the guides and just draw the head the way you want to.
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    The loomis ball was one of the first tricks I learned. It is just one simplification upon many and as dpaint mentioned, it can be used in many different ways. It is important to know a lot of different ways of seeing an object (like a head) in order to be flexible and able to pick the methods that are best for what you are trying to do in whatever image you're using. The loomis ball is just a way of seeing it. It is a trick, not a method. Don't take it too seriously - learn the lesson it is teaching and move on.
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    Ok. thanks for the answers.
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    Hahah dude i remember when studying Loomis, I had the exact same question. I guess I just always eyeballed it. Sometimes the results were pretty wonky because of where I would place that slice. Everything else seemed to hinge on that. In all reality the skull is more egg shaped I think..

    But one thing that helped me is to get a skull model to work from. Do a bunch of skull studies mixed w/ head construction and you'll figure your own way
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    Umm, loomis is a guideline. Combined with observation, to equal what you are trying to do. He's not an end all be all because not all faces & heads are alike. He gives you a starting point and a reference.

    That's it.
    Last edited by OmenSpirits; December 2nd, 2010 at 12:46 AM.
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    From what I remember when I learned from that fine book is what everyone else is saying.

    The circle you make dose not have to be perfectly circular it can be oval or squarish as well. Might help you make the face shapes you want.

    Just remember that the general spacing rule for eyes. Eye space, eye, Eye space, eye, Eye space. Sure that rule can be broken but its one that you should follow. It will help you to know where to cut off the sides.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CrazedIvan View Post
    From what I remember when I learned from that fine book is what everyone else is saying.

    The circle you make dose not have to be perfectly circular it can be oval or squarish as well. Might help you make the face shapes you want.

    Just remember that the general spacing rule for eyes. Eye space, eye, Eye space, eye, Eye space. Sure that rule can be broken but its one that you should follow. It will help you to know where to cut off the sides.
    Thank you CrazedIvan,

    So do you know how to understand or how to measure the distance between the eyes when the head is in a 3/4 view? I know when you are looking the face directly from a 90 degrees angle, the space between each eye is one eye. But I think this rule changes when the head is in 3/4 view. It's always a pain for me to detect the correct distance between the eyes when the head is in a 3/4 view.
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    It is still one eye width. The width of the space between the eyes is reduced by the same proportion as the eyes themselves, so the eyes are still an accurate measure.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3igAnt View Post
    Thank you CrazedIvan,

    So do you know how to understand or how to measure the distance between the eyes when the head is in a 3/4 view? I know when you are looking the face directly from a 90 degrees angle, the space between each eye is one eye. But I think this rule changes when the head is in 3/4 view. It's always a pain for me to detect the correct distance between the eyes when the head is in a 3/4 view.
    Yeah, that's the part that always confuses me. More specifically, Loomis helps you locate where the eyes and mouth and etc will be placed by drawings the circle and browline and etc , but I don't understand how Loomis accounts for foreshortening (when the head is at an angel). Whenever I post a portrait here on conceptart, everyone complains that my eyes are too short, or my mouth too long

    Personally, I am not attached to Loomis and am interested in any other methods people might use, too.
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    Quote Originally Posted by fritzthefox View Post
    It is still one eye width. The width of the space between the eyes is reduced by the same proportion as the eyes themselves, so the eyes are still an accurate measure.
    No comprendo. Could you maybe demonstrate with a sketch, please?
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    Sorry, no time to upload a visual aid. Try to think of it this way:

    If you divide a ruler into thirds and turn it at an angle to your field of view, each third of the ruler is foreshortened equally, yes? The eyes rest on more or less the same plane on the face, so the same principal applies (although perspective modifies it slightly). Think of the ruler as representing both eyes and the space between them.

    Perspective and the rounding of the face mean this won't be a precise measure, but thinking of it that way might get you in the ballpark.
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    Quote Originally Posted by fritzthefox View Post
    If you divide a ruler into thirds and turn it at an angle to your field of view, each third of the ruler is foreshortened equally, yes?
    No. It's not like it gets smaller equally, the proportion between the points change. Perspective distorts by distance.
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