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I did a quick rough sketch in Corel Painter of a pose which I feel very good about and I'm having trouble with where to fix it up and how to proceed with the anatomy. I just feel that something is not quite right with it.
Last edited by Saigokarasu; August 20th, 2008 at 04:16 PM.
First things first, you should put the character into context: Who is he, what is he doing, and where is he? These questions will help to establish the pose and environment.
Secondly, you want to define your horizon (the eye level) as early as possible. This will determine the angle at which we see each body part will be affected by this.
Anatomy-wise, there are a few issues with this. Firstly, the head seems too small compared to the body. Typically, a figure is 7 head-lengths long. Keep in mind that the perspective of the figure will have to be taken into consideration when measuring this.
The torso appears to be a little too long. The arms should end about halfway down the thigh. Raise the hips and lengthen the character's left thigh.
The clavicles are oddly shaped. Mind the 'S' curve that defines the bone. Make sure they line up with the ribcage unless you intend on having one shoulder raised.
The right hand is a bit too small.
The biggest anatomy issue, would be the lower legs, especially his right lower leg. It appears to be resting on something, and you should define what its resting on as soon as possible. If he's leaning on a wall, or standing on a rock, his right leg should bend more at the hip, rather than being alligned with the back.
It will prove to be very useful if you gather some references to help you as you progress. Study yourself in a large mirror if necessary. Also, I'd recommend reading up on Peck, Loomis, and Bridgman. IMO, Andrew Loomis' books are the most accessible to beginners. Check out "Figure Drawing For All It's Worth" - it's out of print but free legal downloads are available on the internet.
Hope that helps and best of luck
Havoc-DM gives great advice for you to heed. I'd like to add to it...
I see that you're WAY too hesitant with your initial sketch. I'm betting the sketch you posted took about ten solid minutes. However long you took, it took WAY too much time to do.
Why? Because it looks like you were so incredibly C_A_R_E_F_U_L with what little you did, skipping the very important initial messy sketch composition level. There seems to be no spontaneity in your figure. How you approach this very first level can easily make for a drawing that looks alive, or something that looks carved in dead wood.
There is such a thing as being too careful, and it looks like you've started this way in your sketch. You can easily fall into the trap of over-rendering everything to the point where everything looks dead and lifeless.
Since you're drawing what I can only imagine will be a comic book-type illustration, I'll talk with you in those terms.
Good news is, you have good skills with drawing a figure. You have all the abilities in you to do a drawing, but now you've got to start out in a proper order.
You need to be able to do your compositions much like you would those 5-10 second poses you'd do in a life drawing class. It forces you to act upon your instincts in a very short time frame, forcing you to 'feel' your way through your drawing.
To demonstrate what I mean, I've attached a version of your sketch that I did in about a minute's time. By working in the short time frame, I feel I was able to make the character more 'alive'-looking.
I think you can do stuff like this, too. You'll still be able to adjust things as you go. My suggestion is all about helping you form a much more solid foundation for your drawings.
This short drawing 'burst' forces you to make things powerful where needed, giving your figure whatever urgency, or 'character' it needs. You would then be making your character 'come alive', ultimately making your character BELIEVABLE and CONVINCING.
It's okay to exaggerate things for effect. It's up to you to figure out where and when you've gone too far, or not far enough.
Now that you've done this first short sketch, take your kneaded eraser and lighten everything up until you barely see a ghost of what you initially did. Then you can start tightening things up, again and again, layer after layer of fine-tuning.
It's like you're building an onion. Layer after layer, until you end up with the finished piece.
I've recently posted about this very thing here and here.