The NMA Anatomy Head


In order to tackle the incredibly difficult challenge of the human head, face, and neck for artists, we set out to create a tool that is more useful than any anatomy book or portraiture class. Our goal was to build a three-dimensional accurate template of the head for artists to study for years to come.

This is the ultimate resource for anybody who wants to improve their understanding of the human head. We decided to start with the fleshed female head. The reason we did this is that we needed a realistic proportional starting point for the subsequent sculptures. We knew that it needed to be the center of the bell curve, a mathematical average of female proportions. Although we chose to represent the female, the planes, anatomy, and structures apply for all kinds of heads.

In order to achieve the ultimate fleshed head this we turned to anthropometric, forensic and medical imaging data. This gave us the dimensions of the head and all of its complex features down to the sub-millimeter level. We analyzed thousands of scans of people’s heads which were graciously provided by the Center for Disease Control to determine which characteristics were common and which were uncommon within head types and we made a careful study of selected individuals to make sure that even the most subtle forms are correct.

We took a similar approach to the skeletal and muscular layers. We used forensic facial reconstruction techniques as well as analyzing hundreds of xrays, ct images, and real cadavers, to ensure that the depth between these layers as well as the relative position, scale, and orientation of all of the parts were faithfully reproduced.

We were amazed at how poorly some of the popular artistic and medical anatomy books and models held up to the real thing. There’s a wealth of new information and understanding for artists in each of these layers. We can say with confidence that such a meticulous and precise reconstruction of the human head has never been available before now.

With these products our emphasis has always been on the correctness of form and proportion but at the same time we wanted to get the details right and we have exceeded every other product on the market whether it’s for medical professionals or artists. Nowhere else can you find anything with the the level of attention we paid from the articular surfaces between the joints of the skeleton to the subtlety of the subcutaneous forms of the face.

Model Details

Released: April 13, 2013
Model Version: 1.0
Credits: Designed, researched, and digitally sculpted by Joshua Jacobo and Eric Wilson.
Overview: The world's most accurate digital model of the anatomy of the head and neck featuring 3 layers: a) The Fleshed Head b) The Skeletal Head c) The Muscular Head
Process: Digitally sculpted using reference from anthropometric, forensic, and medical imaging data

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