Step-by-step: Break­ing down fa­cial struc­ture

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1I al­most al­ways start with a line-work sketch when try­ing to fig­ure out the anatomy. There’s no point in get­ting too de­tailed when ex­plor­ing the un­der­ly­ing struc­ture, and the line-work will come in handy later on, once I be­gin the paint­ing process. I just like to have fun at this point.

2Once the ba­sic idea has been es­tab­lished, I’ll lower the Opac­ity of the sketch or the fi­nal and pro­duce a mock- up of what the skull might look like. This is im­por­tant be­cause it lays the ground work for the mus­cu­la­ture, which pro­vides the bulk of the top­i­cal anatomy.

3Work­ing with both the sketch layer and the skull layer’s Opac­ity low­ered, I’ll lay down the gen­eral out­line and start to de­fine the mus­cle groups. Look at mus­cu­la­ture charts of sim­i­lar an­i­mals like lions or bears, and fig­ure out how the mus­cle would at­tach to your orig­i­nal skull.

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