Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The "head count"

As an illustrator one may be asked to create a number of figures for any book assigned.  In my case I needed some accurate heights for an entire range of people from infants to adults.  Using the basic scientific ratios for number of heads high an individual is, I created my own "head count" chart.

For me it was easier to use the heads on characters I had created to make sure the sizes matched correctly.  The chart above is for a realistic view of the figure.  For other more cartoony styles the head count here will not match. I do find it helpful enough to keep it on my bulletin board next to my desk *:)

The chart above is very helpful when I have a question about height and have no model to use as a reference.  Of course these characters are all standing but you can apply some of the rules to sitting or active figures with a bit of adjusting.

If you are an illustrator with a need for such a chart, please feel free to download and keep this on as a reference.  You could make your own by using your character style and just the numbers posted above each character on this chart.


  1. Thanks, Ginger. Your "head" chart is a great idea.

  2. Ginger, what a great idea. I never considered how an illustrator got the relative sizes of characters right.

  3. Writes of kids books should remember this too!

  4. Great chart. I knew about the various heads for the height of different ages from an art book I bought a while ago. How cool to create your own.

    Karen Cioffi Writing and Marketing