How to Draw the Head and Face – Anime-style Guideline Side View Drawing Tutorial

Anime head side profile view drawing tutorial

Drawing heads are difficult, there are many views that you need to tackle. People normally start learning to draw the front view first, then to side or 3/4 views. The side view can look very different than the front view and you may feel like it’s completely different from drawing the front view. However, once you’ve set up the proper guidelines, it can be pretty easy to draw it!

If you’re interested in learning how to draw an anime head from the front view, I’ve made a post on it here.

In this post, I will be showing you how you can set up guidelines to draw an anime-styled head in the side view. I will talk briefly on how you can change up the proportions to draw an anime head that is a lot cuter, in chibi style.

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Anime Head Side View Guideline Construction Process

Let’s get straight into it! Please note that this is just how I create guidelines for my drawings. Different artists will have different ways in which they construct their guidelines, some can just Freehand everything!

First, as usual, draw a circle. Next, draw a vertical line down the left or right side of the circle, this is where the head will be facing. Now, decide where you want the bottom of the chin to be for your head. If you’re drawing a more mature head, the chin will be longer; if you’re drawing a younger person, the chin should be shorter. in this example, I’m drawing a young female, so the chin is pretty short.

Next, draw a horizontal line in the middle of the head (between the top of the head and the bottom of the chin. This line is where the top of the eye will be

anime side view tutorial

Draw another horizontal line between the top of the eyes and bottom of the chin, this guideline is for the bottom of the nose.

Draw a horizontal line slightly into the face from the vertical line, this line should cut across the bottom line for the chin and the eyes. Add a slight inward curve around where the eye is. The intersection between the guideline for the bottom of the chin and the vertical line will be where the tip of the chin touches.

Where the top of the eyes is, draw a slight dip inwards the head.

anime side view tutorial

From the bottom of the chin, draw a line angled outwards roughly as shown in the image below. Use the guideline to add in the nose. Connect the bottom of the dip to the tip of the nose. The tip of the nose is touching the guideline. The bottom of the nose is touching the guideline for the bottom of the nose. The nose shape and the angle for the guideline can vary depending on age, gender, your preference etc.

anime side view tutorial

Add another horizontal line between the bottom of the nose and chin, this is the guideline for where to place the mouth. The mouth should be slightly above this guideline. When adding in the mouth shape, make sure that only the tip of the top and bottom lips touch the angled guideline.

From the bottom of the mouth to the chin, there’s a slight inward curve.

anime side view tutorial

Now you have a basic shape for the head! Time to start refining and adding in details.

Add in the eye, the top of the eye should be around the guideline we made earlier for the middle of the head.

anime side view tutorial

Draw another vertical line down the centre of the circle, this will be the guideline for placing the ear. The ear is roughly between the eyebrows and bottom of the nose.

anime side view tutorial

Finally, add in the hair and neck, you’ve drawn a side view of an anime head! Note that hair has volume. I’ve put some space between the hair and the head. For the neck, it doesn’t go vertically straight down, it is angled.

anime side view tutorial

Don’t forget to erase overlapping lines! I’ve also angled the chin alittle more.

anime side view tutorial

Chibi Style Side View Head Guidelines

For cute chibi styled heads, the area below the eyes will be a lot shorter and the features will be a lot rounder, thus cuter. The eyes should also be bigger as well. Below are some pins from Pinterest for your reference. I will be making more detailed tutorials on how to draw chibi styled heads in the future.

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