You’ll learn how to draw a skull in this lesson from Laurie B. You will be going over the basic fundamentals of head construction which is very important to learn before diving into drawing full blown faces.
The skull is the perfect place to start with this because when you fully understand how the skull is put together it makes drawing all of the other details on top of the skull so much easier.
The skull starts off with an oval. Notice that it’s squished a bit vertically. There are a few different variations out there on how to create the skull, but this is one of the easiest while still being fairly accurate and quick to both learn and draw.
Next you’ll want to divide up the oval that you drew in the previous step with a horizontal and vertical line. The vertical line passes through the middle of the oval, while the horizontal line is dropped lower where the eye line of the character will be.
Next, draw in the mandible (the jaw) with a curving line going down from the eye line where the nose will eventually be, and then dropping down in to the muzzle, or the front of the jaw.
The next step in learning how to draw a skull is to put in the line across the jaw for the teeth. The line of the teeth follows the line of the lower part of the jaw and then curves up to hinge onto the major form of the skull.
Finish off the teeth by indicating some simple lines. Don’t worry about making the teeth perfect at this point because the majority of the time you won’t be drawing them individually on your character because they will be hidden by the skin.
The spine attaches to the skull on the back part of the head. It’s a beginner mistake to draw the spine coming down from the middle of the skull. To see what I mean about this, reach your hand back to the back of your neck and feel the bumps of your spine. Follow the spine up to where it connects to the head.
Remember that you can always use your own body as reference, and it doesn’t matter if you are learning how to draw a skull, how to draw a face, or any other part of the body.
Now that you have the basic drawing of the skull from the side you’ll rotate it and go over the details for drawing the front of the skull.
To make sure that your side view is matching up to your front view you should draw some horizontal guide lines that extend to the right of your side view skull so that when you are drawing the front view you can use them to make sure that the major parts match up in both the side and front views.
Start off by drawing the circle in the front view. Notice that it’s more like a circle now and it’s not squished in any particular direction.
After the circle you can draw some lines moving down to indicate the jaw.
In this step you will start to draw in some of the finer details of the head along with the eye sockets.
Remember to keep drawing in additional horizontal guide lines as they are needed to keep the front and size views in the same proportion.
Continue to refine your drawing of the human skull and begin to darken up your lines as you find the correct placement of them. The majority of the facial features have now been added into your drawings and you’re almost finished learning how to draw a skull.
One thing to note here is that if you can get your hands on an actual physical skull replica it will help you a lot to understand how the cheekbone is created as well as how the lower jaw is attached to the rest of the skull.
Finish off your skull drawing by darkening in the eye sockets and adding the teeth to the front view.
Learning how to draw a skull is really important to drawing good looking faces and we would suggest that you practice drawing skulls until they become second nature to you. If you’re serious about drawing characters this is one of the most important things that you can do to develop as a character artist.
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