Graphical reconstruction

After being examined, measured, and described, the cranium is drawn in profile, en face and from the top using a dioptrograph (a device for drawing contours)

The outline is overlaid by a drawing using reference points determined by the standards.

Next, outlines of masticatory muscles are traced, the position of eyes, and nose shape are evaluated along with mouth shape, nasolabial fold, and other details.

Having transposed the cranial contour onto paper and highlighted the facial relief by shading, one arrives at a rather true-to-life image.

Gerasimov described this part of the work as a pilot stage in sculptural reconstruction, a means of selecting details to which attention should be drawn during actual sculpturing.

However, graphical reconstruction itself can be quite close to a realistic portrait and thus be an independent source of information having practical applications.

Facial muscles The reconstruction of facial contour from the cranial contourGraphical reconstruction of the face from a skull

Mikhail Gerasimov’s Career
Mikhail Gerasimov as an Archaeologist
Reconstruction of the Face from the Cranium
The Predecessors
Elaboration of the method
Stages in the reconstruction process
Cranium description
Graphical reconstruction
Sculptural reconstruction
Fields of application
Further development of the method
“Sinanthropus” (Member of the Species Homo Erectus)
Homo Neanderthalensis (Neanderthal man)
Neanderthal Child from Teshik-Tash
People of the Upper Paleolithic
People of the Mesolithic
People of the Early Iron Age
Drawings by M.M. Gerasimov