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   F A C I A L  F E A T U R E S  2   The Mouth   

Fig 1.

Before starting to draw the mouth, it is beneficial to know about the five muscles that form the lip shape.
There are three muscles in the top lip and two in the bottom lip

 

Fig 2.

When drawing the outline of the mouth, it is best to mark the location of the corners of the mouth before you start. in a serious mouth, the corners are usually in line with the pupils of the eyes.
Once located, draw a broken curved line where the lips meet. This is the darkest line of the mouth. Then indicate lightly the outline of the lip bow above the centre lip line.
Finally draw a faint small curved line for the bottom lip.

 

Fig 3.

This shows the shading of the lips. Shade with downward pencil
strokes as this follows the formation of the skin on the lips.
As the top lip points downwards, it is darker in shade.
The Bottom lip points upward and is lighter in tone and
has a highlighted area in the centre.
There is a highlighted area on the rim of the top lip before
the start of the shading of the philtrum underneath the nose.
It is also important to shade underneath the centre of the
bottom lip. This will make the bottom lip appear more prominent.

 

 

 

Fig 4.

This shows the three-quarter profile mouth. The mouth is foreshortened on the side that it furthest from you. Sometimes, it is only just visible. the near side of the mouth is longer.

 

 

fig 5.

In the full side profile mouth, it is important
to measure the angle of the lips. Most times the
bottom lip lies back underneath the top lip but in
some cases the bottom lip is more prominent.
Again the centre line of the lips will be the darkest.
Measure again the corners of the mouth and see
what other feature they are in line with.

fig 6.

This shows a smiling mouth which has thinner tighter lips as the muscles are being stretched outwards. When drawing the teeth, don't think of them individually but think
of them as a half cylindrical block (fig 7.)

The tops of the teeth are slightly shaded because of the top lip. The side teeth are also shaded as they are receding back into the mouth and finally become much darker at the mouth corners. Only hint at the division of each tooth (top and bottom). If you draw a black line between each tooth they will look like piano keys!  

Pointers

Do not outline the lips with hard black lines as in fig 2. Remember the darkest line is where the lips meet. Do not make the highlight too stark on the bottom lip as the subject will look as though they are wearing lipstick!

Finally keep all shading subtle and soft to create a mobile, supple mouth.

 

NEXT TUTORIAL >> DRAWING PORTRAITS IN PASTEL FROM A PHOTOGRAPH

 

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