Muscular Anatomy of the Face

There are quite a few anatomy resources on the web, but not a lot that combine clear illustrations with pictures of the muscles in action. With the help of a patient model and a fine illustrator, I hope this resource helps clarify how the face can make so many expressions.

You will also find a link to my Craniometric Landmarks web app which is a part of my online forensic sculpture class.


The Nasalis muscle originates on the side of the nose near the middle of the nose's length, this strip like muscle inserts into muscles along the side of the nose and also the wing of the nose. When we wrinkle our nose, we are using this muscle to pull our nostril upwards, thereby compressing and deforming the skin above it. The model is also contracting the Levator labii muscles, his corrugator and procerus, among others to make these expressions.

Anatomical Drawing by Daniel Maidman. Courtesy of the artist.
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