Feb 15, 2013

Facial Expressions and Images Databases

OK, now this is very cool, and a wonderful tool for artists.

A website called the CNBC Wiki has a huge collection of different faces, male and female, from all sorts of angles, and from different ethic groups; Caucasian, African-American, multi-racial and Hispanic. There are a lot of faces to choose from, and each face is photographed from different angles, so you have a perfect study model to draw the head in various positions.

The faces are in a ZIP file; all you have to do is download the file, and then "extract" the folder to where you want it (My Pictures, for example).

Presto! Instant library of people to draw! How cool is that? The images are CC-licensed, meaning that you are free to use them in any publicly-viewable work, as long as you give credit to the CNBC Wiki website.

Myself, I'm going to use them as reference for when I have to draw crowd scenes, create new characters and improve my drawing of facial expressions.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again: assemble your own personal library of images that you can refer to for inspiration and to improve. This is one you can add to your files. Here's the link:

There are so many links and databases on this site that it can be hard to find the good stuff. Fortunately, I've done the work for you!

Below are some examples from a cool facial gallery of faces drawn in stark black and white, helpful for seeing what harsh shadows look like on the human face. The results are almost surreal. Here's the link to the page filled with two dimensional face databases:

There are a lot of other cool image files for your reference besides faces. The website has huge galleries of everyday objects you might have to draw someday.

If you're drawing the inside of a bathroom, kitchen or living room and need to draw common objects you'd find, you're going to need visual references to go by. Myself, I don't know how to draw a nail clipper off the top of my head; I'd have to look at one.

Fortunately, this site has you covered! The page is called BOSS, and the links to the files have not-at-all helpful names such as Non-Normatized Stimuli, but don't worry, there are tons of objects to choose from. Car keys, cameras, baseball hats, plants, jars, light bulbs, shoes, safety pins, sea shells...the list goes on. 

Do yourself a favor and download these for your visual library. Here's the link:

But WAIT! There's MORE!!

This page on the Wiki site has tons of objects that are rendered from different angles, so you are not limited to drawing the object from only one view point. How cool is that??

 Hair dryers, ash trays, lamps, umbrellas, each object has its own folder with the object seen from multiple angles. 

Click on the awnings to take you to the page, and click on The Object Databank (.zip) to download this cool database!

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