THE best guide to the construction of the head is a thorough study of the skull. Obtain or borrow one, and draw it in as many positions as possible, so that you may readily trace the balance of the bone forms in every face and head you draw.
Note particularly those parts of the bone forms that are but thinly covered in the living model, the plane of the temple, the relative position of the teeth and frontal bones, the contour of the chin, jaw.
Now let us consider some points to which sufficient attention is rarely paid.
One of the most important of these is the placing of the ear.
The accompanying drawings were made with this object mainly in view:
Remember that the ear is the axis of the head.
In proportion it is about the length of the nose, the top in a line with the brows and the end of the lobe opposite the nostrils.
Since the ears, like all the other features, have their fixed place in the skull, they and these other features must be considered in relation to the movement of the head and to each other.
When the face is lowered, the ear is relatively raised and inclined with the direction of the face forward. Its base will be seen opposite the bridge of the nose, or in a line with the eyes, according to the inclination of the face. See Plates VIII. and IX. When the face is upturned the ear is lowered, and will be seen in a line with the chin (Plate X.) and inclined backwards.
When the face is turned slightly from you the width of the neck and head behind it is increased, and the space from the ear to the cheek-bone proportionately decreased (Plate XI.), and of course still more so, with the head turned away (XII.).
The placing of the ear determines most clearly for us the actions of raising and lowering the face.
The study of the skull will have taught you that (with slight variations only, due to marked personal characteristics to which I shall refer later) one side of the face must answer to the other. These answering shapes require attention. If, for instance, in the three-quarter face the modelling of the near cheek is rounded by a smile, see that your outline of the further cheek responds. When, again, for example, the head is inclined to the right, the left ear is higher up on the head than the other, and so on.
When the face is lowered, as in Plate IX., the space between the brow and the eye is shortened