Hieroglyphic or Greek Method of Life Drawing

Muscles in Motion Figure Drawing for the Comic Book Artist
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Learn to Draw the Human Figure

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Better Figure Drawing
Learn to draw figures.

Getting started sketching and drawing from life.

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Related page - Links to drawings and article on foreshortening.

Learn figure drawing Make a contour drawing Muybridge Animation

The first challenge is to make the sketch proportional. Start by locating the major dynamic lines. Position of the head in relationship to the neck and torso, locate the limbs and their joints so that everything is proportional. Make sure that the length of the torso is proportional to the head and limbs.

Artists will hold a pencil or brush in front of the model to measure various features,marking the length of a limb or torso by placing their thumb on the brush to transfer the proportion to the drawing.

In the first drawing the major lines are sketched in and joints marked by dots. The axis of the head is established and the head divided into sections for eyes and mouth. Notice that the head is directly over the leg which bears the weight of the body.

How to draw a standing figure Human body proportions


Next, make a contour drawing. Using the framework created by the major lines of the body that you drew, carefully observe and draw the contours of the body. Pay as much attention to the negative spaces as to the positive spaces. For instance, the triangle created by the elbow, upper arm, forearm and torso is as important a shape to creating accurate proportion as is the shape of the arm.

At this stage you can begin to place the major features, kneecaps, belly, breasts, hair, tendons and bones surrounding the neck, fingers, eyes, ears, nose, etc. Again, pay as much attention to the space between features as you pay to the size and shape of the features themselves.

Work out all the placement and proportion issues before you begin to shade the drawing.

How to draw figures Learn life drawing

Now that all the proportions are established you can begin to shade the drawing which will give it life. Begin by shading the shapes of the figure. I begin by observing the direction the light is coming from and going through every part of the figure and shading that part of the limb, head or body which is on the opposite side from the light to give a general form to the whole drawing.

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At this stage also begin to show the shape of the form by the direction of your shading marks. You can begin to show the hair by the same means, making marks which mimic the direction and flow of the hair.

Notice that shading is not just a routine coloring of every shape, but rather careful observation of how the light falls, or doesn't. Some forms are completely in shadow, others totally in light. Some are half in and half out of the light and these neutral forms (the top of the chest for instance) give dimension to the other forms.

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Once the general shape of the figure is established, finish the drawing by modulating the shadows and light. Some shadows receive almost no light and are shaded heavier and darker. Others receive reflected light and are lighter. Shading to show the way light flows around curves (the legs for instance) should have a soft edge.

Finally add the cast shadows, in this drawing the shadows cast by the chin, breast, arms onto the stomach and left leg onto the right leg. These final details add life and dimension to the drawing, by completing the interplay between light and shadow they complete the illusion and give atmosphere to the drawing.

Life Drawing - Croquis de Pierre Lissac
Drawings of Paris life by Pierre Lissac as published in the pages of La Vie Parisienne in the early part of the twentieth century. Pierre Lissac was an astute observer of boulevard life and brought wit and humor to his drawings of these ladies, artists and artist models.
Download at Figure-Drawings.com
Or now available as a printed book at Lulu.com. Support independent publishing: buy this book on Lulu.

Poser Debut
Poser Debut available now at Smith Micro Software! Plus save an extra 10% with code POSDEB10 until September 1, 2011!

A Drawing Manual by Thomas Eakins by Thomas Eakins, Amy Werbel (Contributor), Kathleen A. Foster (Editor)
While a teacher at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, the celebrated American artist Thomas Eakins (1844-1916) prepared a drawing manual for his students. The manuscript developed out of his famous lectures at the Academy on linear perspective, mechanical drawing, reflections, and sculptural relief and included illustrations by the artist.

Eakins perspective drawing the pair oared shell.

Eakins perspective drawing of the icosahedron

Process on Paper: Drawings by Thomas Eakins from the Charles Bregler Collection of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts

Baldessari on Thomas Eakins's "Rock Thrower"

More Photographs by Thomas Eakins

The Figure: The Classic Approach to Drawing and Construction

On Drawing - by Norm Nason - The Scream Online

Charles Bargue Et Jean-Leon Gerome: Drawing Course
Like most 19th-century drawing series, the Bargue course was divided into three sections: the copying of plaster casts (a number of these ghostly white fragments and statues, some larger than life, appear here, lent by various institutions), then of master drawings, and then working from live (male) nudes.
-GRACE GLUECK in The New York Times.

Student work from the New York Academy of Art - Charles Bargue Drawing Class - September 2004

Charles Bargue Drawing Course - a student's review of another course.

Fairbanks - Human Proportions for Artists Fairbanks - Human Proportions for Artists
Human Proportions for Artists (Spiral-bound) by Avard T. Fairbanks (Author), Eugene F. Fairbanks (Author)
This is a comprehensive studio guide to human proportions listing over one hundred measurements of both male and female figures with head and face details. Measurements are in both inch and metric systems and fractions are in columns from heroic to 1/12 life size. Section are included on relative and comparative proportions and of dynamic symmetry.

artist-reference.com images for artists to download.

New - Rare and Valuable Old Drawing Books - Now Available as Inexpensive ebooks

New Book on the Web - Modelling for Life Drawing is a web version of a book about modelling first drawn from insights of a group of artists and models working together in Hoboken, New Jersey, then written by Hugh Kilmer.

The book was inspired by by a desire to create a more professional and workable relationship between artists and models, to treat models better and therefore to improve the quality of work artists are able to do.

The author says, "The pointers in this website will often seem obvious; reflection will usually show that they are often ignored in practise. Deliberate attention to them on the part of a large enough group of models and artists will give them greater weight. If so, I think that personal and professional relations between models and artists will improve, there will be greater respect for modeling as a profession and as a performing art, and artists and models will find themselves working better together to improve both the quality of professional modeling and the quality of artistic expression inspired by that modeling."

The book is now available on the internet and has many helpful tips for artists and models.

U.S. Women Painters: 1893 Exposition

Drawing to See

New - Selections from life drawing books from the forties and fifties.

Professional 3D Figure Design & Animation

The Art of Drawing The Figure: Essential Exercises

nude nude nude

Drawing the Female Nude by Giovanni Civardi, an Italian Artist and teacher.

Launching the Imagination Comprehensive with Core Concepts CD-ROM v3.0

Virtual Pose: For professional and student artists, the Virtual Pose ® series is the next best thing to working with a live model. Purchase Virtual Pose, Virtual Pose 2or Virtual Pose 3 at Amazon.com. Preview the CD and download individual poses at the Virtual Pose website Image

Virtual Pose Virtual Pose buy a copy at Amazon.com Virtual Pose Virtual Pose 2 buy a copy at Amazon.com Virtual Pose Virtual Pose 3 buy a copy at Amazon.com

Figure Drawing for all it's Worth
Figure drawing for all it's worth by Andrew Loomis
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Click here to see Figure Drawing for All Its worth by Andrew Loomis for sale on Ebay.

Image A rare and famous art book with hundreds of illustrations to help you draw the human body.
A newly released work called Figure Drawing Secrets by Victor Perard Recently a long-lost manuscript by highly acclaimed artist and illustrator, Victor Perard, has been re-discovered. Perard’s work is the secret resource many top artists used to perfect their drawing and painting of the human figure.

Art Models Life Nudes for Drawing Painting and Sculpting with Disk

Anthony Ryder Drawing From Life Figure DrawingFigure Drawing
The Artist's Complete Guide to Figure Drawing : A Contemporary Perspective on the Classical Tradition by Anthony Ryder Drawing From Life by Clint Brown, Chervl McLean, Cheryl McLean Drawing By Andrew Loomis

"Do you struggle with figure drawing? Click Here! Learning the human form will bring you to new arenas of your hobby, career, or training you thought unimaginable.

Learn how to draw Caricatures and create an absolutely AMAZING living with this Video Series and Bonus Marketing E-book. Click Here!

Impress your friends and draw incredible manga and anime characters that look completely authentic. No more "beginners mistakes" and no more trial and error! This is a fast, easy way to learn how to do it right! Click Here!

Draw the Line (Paperback)- by Emilio Soltero

Figure it out: Ideas on figure drawing & sequential art (Unknown Binding) by Emilio Soltero

Draw the Line Presentation & Book Signing Emilio Soltero, Ph.D.

Figure It Out Text & Art by Emilio Soltero - Review

Emilio's House of Sequential Art (Comic Book Art)

Vicente Segrelles - Author of the Graphic Novels The Mercenary

Visual Reference for Comic Artists is a photo reference pose file on CD-ROM for comic artists, video game designers, and professional graphic designers.

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The Natural Way to Draw : A Working Plan for Art Study by Kimon Nicolaides, exercises and samples of contour drawing plus a lot of examples of old masters.

Chuck Jones Video
Chuck Jones - Extremes and In-Betweens, a Life in Animation (2000)

The Animator's Survival Kit by Richard Williams

Poser Figure Artist buy a copy at Amazon.com
Poser Figure Artist Released by e frontier - Software Replaces Wooden Mannequins and Live Models

The Structure of Man - Drawing The Human Figure From Your Mind - with links to videos on youtube

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