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Life Drawing by Vladimir London
In this video lesson, you will discover How to Draw a Girl Easy. Here, we continue to explore different ways of life drawing. This time, you will find out how to use symbols when drawing models.
The second sitting figure in this three-figure artwork will be depicted using a more intuitive way, which is based on recognizing and using "visual signs" that a pose can be correlated with.
The model is sitting on a chair, and you can spend a moment thinking what sign or graphic element the pose reminds you of. To me, this pose resembles a Japanese character that means "direction." The mirror image of this symbol in red coincides with the model's pose. Of course, you don't have to use Japanese characters. It could be anything you imagine. One pose can resemble the sail of a ship, another might look like a bow, or maybe the branches of a tree—whatever comes to your mind. As you see, in this drawing, I did not start with proportions and measurements. Instead, I am actually sketching the sign. In a way, I'm drawing the Japanese character "direction," which helps me to portray the model's pose. For now, my interest is in the correct angles of the symbol's lines. I can also use the angles of lines between any two points on the body to check if my drawing is correct.
This is a rather intuitive way of drawing a model. It works well not only because I imagined the symbol, but mainly because I'm using—on autopilot—all the knowledge and experience of drawing correct anatomy and proportions. The line of the shoulders and arms is horizontal in this pose. When a quick sketch of the sign is in place, it is time to use anatomy. The ribcage resembles an oval in this view. The widest muscle of the back is like a big arrowhead pointing down. It spans from one arm to the other and points to the sacrum. The abdominal muscle and the ribcage define the torso's outline in this view. We see the model's legs without any foreshortening.
The model's head is turned away from the viewer, and her torso is twisted almost 90 degrees. Although this pose is aesthetically beautiful, it is quite challenging for a model to hold it for a long time. When you draw such poses, always tell your model to feel free to stretch and take short breaks whenever he or she feels like it. The trapezius muscle defines the outline here. A small bump on the model's shoulder is actually the acromion, where the collarbone connects to the shoulder blade. The model's right arm is greatly foreshortened. The spine of the shoulder blade comes close to the skin and is detectable on the surface. I draw one continuous virtual line that spans between the spines of the two shoulder blades, to place them on the same level. The back portion of the deltoid originates from that spine of the shoulder blade. And the middle portion comes from the acromion. The big round muscle of the shoulder blade adds its volume to the widest muscle of the back. There are two more noticeable muscles of the shoulder blade—one below its spine and one above.
The seventh vertebra is an important landmark in the back-side view. This is where the neck ends and the ribcage begins. Its process is notable on the surface. Several more processes of vertebrae are visible along the spine in this view. Rhomboid-shaped muscles connect a shoulder blade with the spine. These muscles lie underneath the trapezius muscle, which creates the muscular forms of the upper back and also defines the contours of the shoulders and the neck. At the top, it connects to the base of the skull. Its four-sided diamond shape spans from one shoulder to the other and from the middle of the back to the skull.
Another important muscle in this view is the widest muscle of the back. Its triangular shape spans from one upper arm to the other. At the bottom, this muscle originates from the sacrum. The top edge of this muscle always covers the lower ends of the shoulder blades. In this view, this muscle resembles the letter "Y", with its two arms raised up. The hip bone has a characteristic semi-oval shape at the top. It defines the top of the pelvis. In this view, we clearly see the external oblique muscle, which spans from the ribcage to the pelvis. Its flank pad, or abdominal portion, influences the contours of the waist area.
When you draw legs, always give enough attention to the knee. This joint is shaped by the thigh bone and shinbone condyles as well as the kneecap. The thigh bone connects to the pelvis at the hip joint. The middle portion of the buttocks muscle inserts into the top of this bone and gives volume to the hip. The big lateral portion of the quadriceps shapes the leg's outer region. At the back, there are the hamstrings. The calf muscle shapes the back side of the lower leg. At the lateral side of the lower leg, there is the calf bone, the top end of which is detectable on the surface. At the bottom, this bone ends as the lateral ankle. The tibial tuberosity is another important landmark, which is located below the knee. The front planes of the knee and the foot are situated parallel to each other. The "boxer's muscle" connects the ribcage and the shoulder blade...
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