C A D O G A N
A R T
F A C I A L F E A T U R E S 2
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
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
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
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
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.
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.
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
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
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.)
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!
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
Finally keep all shading
subtle and soft to
create a mobile, supple
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