This is where facial reconstruction can play an important role. Using a combination of tissue thicknesses and muscles, very good results has been obtained. This technique builds upon:
How do people recognise faces? Little data is available. It is known that the brain picks up on differences when a photo and reconstruction is seen together - similarities when each is viewed alone. The purpose of forensic reconstruction is to provide an image which will spark something when the right person saw it (Pragg and Neave, 1997; George, 1993)
Using a combination of anatomy and measurements might not be 100% correct but it is not just guessing. A balance between the artist and science is obtained. At the same time it must be remembered that the methodology for archaeological reconstruction varies from that of a forensic reconstruction (Pragg and Neave, 1997). There is most often no way to compare the accuracy of an archaeological reconstruction. On the other hand, most workers report a high rate of success for forensic cases (Pragg and Neave, 1997; George, 1993; George;1987)
These pages will give a simplified explanation for beginners. It is hoped that this will form a lattice on which you can build. As in any discipline, it is important to keep learning. For more detailed explanations consult the list of references.