HELP- Methods for learning- Anatomy/imaginative Drawing
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Thread: HELP- Methods for learning- Anatomy/imaginative Drawing

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    Unhappy HELP- Methods for learning- Anatomy/imaginative Drawing

    Hey

    (Im terribly sorry if am asking a question which has already been answered)

    On the subject of Concept Art, I am doing my best to try and learn anatomy (mainly for imagination) since its a must for "concept" work, and also because I dont know any excersises or ideas of what else to draw that will improve my concept. However, for my situation i dont know what I should do- whether it will enforce bad habits, poor interpretations, or whatever, I dont know.

    -Im 15 and I cant exactly find anywhere which will let me draw people from life unclothed yet im told that this is imperative for observation. I could draw people with clothes in the street or whatever, but some people say you shouldnt because you wont understand whats going on underneath

    -I would use books or picture references to copy- until ive built up an "image-base" type thing; but then people are saying references are bad, so dont use them. In addition, Ive seen that some people say that pictures and book type media shouldnt be used because you cant establish a good perspective on something.

    -On actually how to improve my anatomy drawing: should I just draw body parts, draw skeletons, muscles. gestures- I need some serious help.

    Once again i apologize if I am going wrong somewhere...I probably dont make sense but I had to get down everything that was on my mind.

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    Mouser on Dee St. is offline You look lovely, lying wasted on the bed Level 1 Gladiator: Andabatae
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    www.posemaniacs.com
    That's a website that has a lot of different tools that help you with the human form (without needing to feel awkward about staring at naked people on your screen).
    I'd say that unless you live somewhere people bundle up and you can't guess at their forms, drawing people in clothes can't be a negative thing.

    If you still feel like you need to do the very minimum, start at the skeleton and muscle frame with an anatomy book (medical or artistic - I've learned a lot from my dad's old medical text books in addition to from an anatomy book that looked at the human form artistically) and work up from there.

    As far as references go, as long as you aren't tracing, you can get something out of it, and by all means use a reference. However, it's important to realize that art is all about interpretation and you probably shouldn't be trying to draw what you see exactly as it is, but how you see it.

    Your best bet at improving your anatomy is probably going to any type of pose drawing session you can get to or just doodling people you see at the cafe while you're waiting for your beverage of preference.

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    It takes time

    I have spent a year now on and off and it's only now that things are slowly beginning to come together. It all seem so simple now but one seem to forget the huge volume of facts you are really trying to internalize and easy to forget just how much you still haven’t gotten down yet.

    Do gesture when you can, pose maniacs etc
    Get a good anatomy book that has realism inside it, Sara Sambett or Goldfinger's books are great
    Get the Bridgman books that focus on form and understanding volume
    Vilppu is my favorite regarding getting your drawing strategy to work for you
    Loomis is free and awesome but it lacks the guidance Vilppu has for complete idiots like me, I feel that I have wasted alot of time not having come across the Vilppu manual before, I think that's the reason few folk like his stuff because it works so well and they are afraid that they might end up drawing like vilppu.

    The real issue with using ref is that you shouldn't do one thing all the time, ref's are static 2D images, Vary material from time to time and study real life or get hold of some soft-core Met-art video. It's easy to forget that a body is actually soft and affected by gravity when looking at pictures. Watch video and focus on gesture to develop feeling for action, balance etc.. Hit pause at random places and draw.
    Pose maniacs is good but it has the drawback of looking like iron hard shelled figures. A large part of gesture is not only the posture but also the feeling taking into account every behavioral aspect, flexibility, fat, elasticity, balance, motion, gravity etc.. You don't feel much of that from pose maniacs but everything has it's bits to add. So don't use one medium exclusively or you will have hair on your palms.

    You will get times where you are exhausted, take a break and study other stuff, Animal anatomy is a great conductive break away because then you start to see comparrative anatomy and there's stuff there that will help you understand or get overlooked stuff. There is a sense of anatomical fact shared by all skeletal creatures, diversifying your study will enhance your sense for these and starting the process of being able to see this will later help again with concepting.

    You won't get everything in one go so you will find that you won't absorb everything on your first full arsenal attempt working through an anatomy book, or even your second one. You need to give yourself time to memorize and internalize the information. Just like studying any subject for the final exams with the exception that you want to know that stuff even after you wrote the test, so it's quite a process.

    There are certain things that speed up the process and that's where I like vilppu again, concentrating on volume and gesture first, then landmarks and proportions, then you end up with a mannequin that actually works and you need that sucker to work even if it's dumb, you need to have a dumb mannequin that looks RIGHT in right I mean that the cubes and cylinders look right as simple as they are.

    As Vilppu said, it's not that people have a hard time mastering difficult stuff, it's that they don't spend the time to get the really simple stuff PERFECT. That rang a really large bell in my head and that's where I noticed what's wrong with the way I learn. The real meat of what vilppu teaches have no direct relationship with anatomy at all apart from gesture, but those are essential to drawing stuff in space and it's those things that makes your drawing a success. I skipped through those first exercises because they are so easy but later in the book I got that message that it's the simple stuff that needs to be mastered.

    The dibs and drabs of finer knowledge all get's sticked on to your foundation that is gesture and being able to illustrate volumes or general volumes in space.

    Allot of time and frustration have been wasted before I got vilppu trying to get the perfect manikin. Don't do that, The mannequin will never be perfect so I stopped and realized that the mannequin is the idea and not the actual. For instance the perfect pelvis, I really tried that puppy getting all kinds of models of stuff to work, but eventually I have spend enough time with it that I started seeing the invisible flesh and skin and where stuff is looking at that weird shape of the original kinda like x-ray vision, so the ultimate frame is the real deal, the actual skeleton, but even that you cant draw as a mannequin easily. You actually need a block mannakin to be able to draw the skeleton convincingly. The best idea of the approach to the mannequin I have found is that the mannequin is just blocking in space that will be occupied. The end result "SHOULD NOT" then be forced or tried make confirm or attach perfectly to it's pieces, It can be estimated or get real close but you shouldn't treat it as a skeleton or frame, it's just blocking in the idea. Stuff can be smaller in space or even larger than the actual cylinder you have used for a forearm for example. The only bit of structural aid that is foolproof is the idea of "Corners" when working with figures that's kinda symmetrical, because theres two points in space they can be akkin to the corners of a box but that's about it! None of the planes is perfect but serve to give a general idea of direction in space but gets replaced in space with other volumes later but the only thing that can truely map is the corners and that includes allot of anatomical landmarks.

    That's where I have spent lots of time getting nowhere trying to find the perfect dummy shapes that would behave like a skeletal mannakin. In the end it did help me to get the more complex bone structure understanding and in the end you should actually be able to draw bone shapes on your own. But this again takes time and I have not fully internalized that yet either but I have come to a point where I can feel that I am making progress and I can have fun with the bit's that I know. Being able to create action and gesture and character is the fun part and it makes all the other stuff fun along with it.

    Last edited by George Abraham; May 12th, 2009 at 10:05 AM.
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