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Thread: Best anatomy drawing books/tutorials?

  1. #1
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    Best anatomy drawing books/tutorials?

    Every time I go to the bookstore or college library or city library I always go to the anatomy book section. I decided instead of always borrowing the books, I'm just going to buy them. So which ones do you think are the most helpful? So far I like the books by:

    Gottfried Bammes
    Sheppard
    Bridgman
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  3. #2
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    I'm a huge Bridgman fan. Look for 'The Human Machine' and 'Complete Guide to Drawing from Life'. Both are stellar. Jack Hamm's 'Drawing the Head and Figure' and 'Cartooning the Head and Figure' are also helpful. Also of note, Fritz Schider's 'An Atlas of Anatomy for Artists'. Also, get to some local figure drawing classes and do some other assorted life drawings too. That'll all help.
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    I like Stephen Roger Peck's "Atlas of Human Anatomy for the Artist", I bought it on a recommendation from the studioproducts guys ( every single book they've suggested has been awesome btw) and I'm really liking it, very clear diagrams, I think once I memorise it I'll have a decent overview.
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Atlas-Human-...8434686&sr=8-1

    Bridgman seems good also, but a tad sketchy for me, I sometimes don't quite get the diagrams..

    Really though, it's such a ridiculously complex subject that everyone will have that one book where it finally "clicked" for them. I find myself cross-referencing between them, where one author hasn't been too clear on one area I'll look at it from a different angle in someone elses book..

    I'm also a huge fan of Loomis and Ron Tiners "Figure Drawing Without a Model"

    I'm not stating that these are the best ones but they were the most useful to me so far..

    btw Briggsy posted some sweet anatomy plates in this forum, probably a couple of threads up from here..
    Last edited by Flake; August 29th, 2007 at 09:48 PM.
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    Dynamic anatomy is also a good one to look into buying. And i think you can get the Loomis figure drawng book online somewhere. youd have to look around. Dont think many loomis books are still in print.
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    The almost medical approach of Peck and the more stylized, structural approach of Bridgman or Bammes compliment each other very nicely.
    Last edited by Elwell; January 14th, 2011 at 11:05 PM.

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  8. #6
    Ellingsworth Guest
    I have Bridgman, but I'm kind of confused, should you try to draw the lines you see in his drawings or try to construct his figures and drawings from simple lines?

    I like his book I'm going to try to go through it many times, also I like Loomis.

    Another question about Bridgman, should I go through his sketches quick and clean or take my time and go through them super slow trying to draw every line he has on paper?

    I have this book, I got it at the library and just bought it. I like it a lot.
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    Ellingsworth, as someone who perserverates on Bridgman on these boards constantly I would say, whichever way gets the information into your head is the best way to copy over his anatomy stuff.

    See the thing is, Bridgman isn't telling you how to draw, he's demonstrating with his drawings how to think about form. And you can use that info in drawing or painting or sculpture! And in any style under the sun!

    But in order to think about form the way he's trying to teach, as chunks, you need to *remember* where every plane of form on the entire anatomy corners and how all the forms interlock. And one way to cram all that info into your head is to simply copy his darn books line for line.

    Also, so many of the lines Bridgman uses are structural lines -- although he doesn't tell you that -- so if you edit as you copy, you might not see that you're missing copying down info that looks, at first, like stray lines but isn't.

    One of the many great things about Bridgman is that not only can you use his info on where form "corners" to figure out how to seperate shadow areas from light areas (To make things looks solid, the fairly strict separation of dark and light is essential), but the exact same information about the corners of the form, in the light areas, tells you where the highlights (could) go. Light hits strongest whatever is closest to it... and that can be a corner where two planes meet as well as the closest perpindicular plane.

    Check out this CU from Rockwell's oil sketch for Land of Enchantment from life and then the same CU of the final. Especially pay attention to how Rockwell relocated and strengthened the highlights and simultaneously emphasized the angularity of the form. He's poeticizing form here, in my opinion, using the information he received from Bridgman, (his teacher at the art student's league), about where the forms "corner".

    And Rockwell, thus having the ability to crisply delineate dark from light in his form, is able to make solid form on the final even when working in a very very narrow value range.

    Going from the sketch to the final, check out how chunky with solid form he makes the cheeks, by adding and emphasizing the highlights by conceiving them as inhabiting facets/planes with definitive edges. Also the noses, where he highlights the corners of the form.

    Anyhow..
    kev
    Last edited by kev ferrara; September 3rd, 2007 at 12:02 AM.
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    Thanks for the insight! I've been reading and copying my Bridgman for the last couple of days. Like what Kev Ferrara said, he really is all about planes and how forms interlock, but I'll pay more attention on his "structural lines" from now on.

    By the way, Kev. Can you show another example buy using one of Bridgman's drawings? Thanks.
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  11. #9
    Ellingsworth Guest
    Wow, Kev, thanks a bunch for the great explanation! I'm going to post some examples of my copies and maybe you could tell me if they are good or not, or if I'm on the right path. I'm thinking about going from the start of his book again, and go through everyone of the drawings super slow, until his knowledge of forms and planes are embedded in my brain.

    Attachment 196410

    Attachment 196411

    Attachment 196414

    Attachment 196419
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    These look very good to me! Keep at it!
    At least Icarus tried!


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  13. #11
    Ellingsworth Guest
    Thanks, dude. Guess I'm off to do more studies. Later!
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    For some reason, a year ago not too many people ever mention Bridgman. I have his complete life drawing book somewhere.
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    BY George

    One suggestion that will help everybody doing
    studies from Bridgman or anyone else for that matter.
    Always work at least as large as the original.
    In Bridgman's case most of these drawings were
    class demo's and were done much larger that the repro's in the book!
    So when your drawings don't seem to have the
    same flow or rhythm part of the problem is scale.

    I have drawn all of the Bridgman drawing's more
    then once and read the copy several times as well.

    The problem with the book(s) is that the
    copy sometimes does not relate well to the drawings on that page.

    I think on the second reading one must go
    through very slowly and diagram what he is
    saying in the text to get the maximum benefit.
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