Drawing the Human Figure:

Once
you are at ease with drawing the basic shapes, it’s time for you to move onto
the Human figure. To begin with, draw the Human figure using just the lines; in
other words begin with the line drawings of the Human figure as shown in the
image below- ADD PIC line drawing

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Make
sure that you sketch out these line drawings of the Human figure really quick,
say in 10 seconds!

 

Drawing gestures and movements –

It involves making fluent or fluid designs that indicate weight, force
and mood of movements. It means drawing very quickly capturing the essence of
the form. It also helps in increasing an understanding of various forms and
their movements. Gesture drawing should be quick as it adds energy to the
drawings. Lines should be economical, as it makes the figures simple and more
expressive. Drawing the figures in various postures will give versatility and a
better understanding on how bodies move.

–         
Basic proportions –

Proportions of a body have to be established while drawing an image, as
it needs to seem realistic. An adult’s height is around seven and a half heads,
for example, while a baby’s is only about four times the size of its head. Some
other proportions can be noted – the width of the chest is one head unit
usually, the waist is slightly broader than one head, the knees are to be
placed above the lower quarter of the figure and the wrist descends just below
the crotch and the male figure is approximately two heads broader at the widest
point than the female figure. Similarly, one can work out these basic
proportions for the rest of the human body, keeping in mind the various
differences in the male and the female forms.

Drawing heads –

In the overall human figure, the head and face are the main focal points
of attention. They display various emotions and expressions. The eyes are the
main centre of attraction, as they communicate emotions and moods better than
words. The eyebrows play a very important role in complementing the mood
depicted by the eyes. The nose adds a character to the face. The ears are the
most complex part of the human body to draw. The shape and expressions of the
lips too need to be carefully drawn, as they will determine the emotion being
expressed to a large extent – whether the figure drawn is laughing, crying or
frowning, it will become clear according to the way the lips are drawn.

Key lines –

These are the lines used for structural division of a figure being drawn.
They are basically the main lines or important lines that help in the placement
of one part of the body in reference to the other parts. These key lines can be
drawn straight or curved, according to the position of the model.

Perspective –

This is what makes the drawings seem realistic; even after knowing the
anatomy and the structure of the human figure, figures or images might not seem
realistic unless you can relate the various parts of the figure to the eye
level or to the horizon. This relationship is known as perspective. Perspective
in the figure actually means that all the parts of the figure are related to a
particular eye level. The perspective of the same figure will change as per the
level at which you view it – from above, below or from directly in front of the
image. Perspective is another way to place a drawing in space, by creating
depth and giving the object a feel of actually existing in a given space.
Drawing with perspective in mind allows one to place the image in the foreground,
middle ground or background. These are of three types –

 

1.     
One point perspective – In this, there is only one vanishing
point, which is always within the image itself. Vanishing point is the point
obtained by extending the edges of the objects that are parallel to each other
that converge at one point. ADD better PIC s

2.     
Two point
perspective – There are two
vanishing points in this that are on the same horizon.

3.     
Three
point perspective – Two
vanishing points are on the same horizon; the third is either above or below
the horizon line. This helps the viewer of the image to focus on these points
wherever we want him to be looking = either above or below the horizon line.

Volume Construction –

The sphere, the cube and the cone are the three fundamental or basic
forms in nature from which other forms, like the cylinder are derived. These
shapes help in drawing the human form – in making the large areas like the
torso, as well as the smaller areas like the toes and fingers. The trunk and
the torso are geometrical shapes – the torso can be seen as an elongated
cylinder, or as two cubes, one on top of the other. Imagine these cubes joined
together by a cord that allows them the flexibility to move and to twist and
turn around, resulting in various movements.

 

 

Balance –

This helps the human body to remain in position and not fall over while
stationary or when in movement. For this, the weight of the body needs to be
properly distributed. Moreover, the state of balance changes according to the
movement. While drawing, this needs to be kept in mind, because otherwise the
images appear unrealistic and disturbing. The centre of gravity has to be
judged, because every figure, when stationary or in movement, has to have a
well-distributed centre of gravity, for example, when a figure is shown as
standing, the centre of gravity is evenly distributed between both his feet.

Light and shade –

With the help of light and shade, we can create highlights or shadows.
Using this we can also add depth and dimension to the image being drawn. To
correctly use this concept in drawing, one needs to have knowledge of the grey
scale that is a scale originating with white at one end and with black at the
other end, with increasing shades of grey in between. All these shades of grey
indicate different conditions of light. An easy exercise to understand this
concept would be to make a sphere and imagine light falling on it from various
angles. Accordingly, it would be dark and light in different parts, as the
light shifts. This concept helps in highlighting various parts of the human
face or the human figure, making it appear cheery or serious.

s

Shape –

This is a basic requirement in drawing that helps to view and draw the
object without any distortion in its form. For this, one has to train the eye
to see the full form of the image, rather than seeing it in parts. Triangles,
circles, ovals and other such irregular shapes are easier to see than simply
linear ones. When drawing the human figure, it is easier to see it as a
composition or combination of various shapes than as a composite whole.

Line of action –

The Line of Action or the Center Line is the imaginary curved line going
from the head or the top of the figure to the bottom. Every figure will have a
line of action; so when one is drawing a figure in an image, the line of action
can be used as a point of reference to draw the outline of the figure.

  

 

Drawing the Human Figure:

Once
you are at ease with drawing the basic shapes, it’s time for you to move onto
the Human figure. To begin with, draw the Human figure using just the lines; in
other words begin with the line drawings of the Human figure as shown in the
image below- ADD PIC line drawing

Make
sure that you sketch out these line drawings of the Human figure really quick,
say in 10 seconds!

 

Drawing gestures and movements –

It involves making fluent or fluid designs that indicate weight, force
and mood of movements. It means drawing very quickly capturing the essence of
the form. It also helps in increasing an understanding of various forms and
their movements. Gesture drawing should be quick as it adds energy to the
drawings. Lines should be economical, as it makes the figures simple and more
expressive. Drawing the figures in various postures will give versatility and a
better understanding on how bodies move.

–         
Basic proportions –

Proportions of a body have to be established while drawing an image, as
it needs to seem realistic. An adult’s height is around seven and a half heads,
for example, while a baby’s is only about four times the size of its head. Some
other proportions can be noted – the width of the chest is one head unit
usually, the waist is slightly broader than one head, the knees are to be
placed above the lower quarter of the figure and the wrist descends just below
the crotch and the male figure is approximately two heads broader at the widest
point than the female figure. Similarly, one can work out these basic
proportions for the rest of the human body, keeping in mind the various
differences in the male and the female forms.

Drawing heads –

In the overall human figure, the head and face are the main focal points
of attention. They display various emotions and expressions. The eyes are the
main centre of attraction, as they communicate emotions and moods better than
words. The eyebrows play a very important role in complementing the mood
depicted by the eyes. The nose adds a character to the face. The ears are the
most complex part of the human body to draw. The shape and expressions of the
lips too need to be carefully drawn, as they will determine the emotion being
expressed to a large extent – whether the figure drawn is laughing, crying or
frowning, it will become clear according to the way the lips are drawn.

Key lines –

These are the lines used for structural division of a figure being drawn.
They are basically the main lines or important lines that help in the placement
of one part of the body in reference to the other parts. These key lines can be
drawn straight or curved, according to the position of the model.

Perspective –

This is what makes the drawings seem realistic; even after knowing the
anatomy and the structure of the human figure, figures or images might not seem
realistic unless you can relate the various parts of the figure to the eye
level or to the horizon. This relationship is known as perspective. Perspective
in the figure actually means that all the parts of the figure are related to a
particular eye level. The perspective of the same figure will change as per the
level at which you view it – from above, below or from directly in front of the
image. Perspective is another way to place a drawing in space, by creating
depth and giving the object a feel of actually existing in a given space.
Drawing with perspective in mind allows one to place the image in the foreground,
middle ground or background. These are of three types –

 

1.     
One point perspective – In this, there is only one vanishing
point, which is always within the image itself. Vanishing point is the point
obtained by extending the edges of the objects that are parallel to each other
that converge at one point. ADD better PIC s

2.     
Two point
perspective – There are two
vanishing points in this that are on the same horizon.

3.     
Three
point perspective – Two
vanishing points are on the same horizon; the third is either above or below
the horizon line. This helps the viewer of the image to focus on these points
wherever we want him to be looking = either above or below the horizon line.

Volume Construction –

The sphere, the cube and the cone are the three fundamental or basic
forms in nature from which other forms, like the cylinder are derived. These
shapes help in drawing the human form – in making the large areas like the
torso, as well as the smaller areas like the toes and fingers. The trunk and
the torso are geometrical shapes – the torso can be seen as an elongated
cylinder, or as two cubes, one on top of the other. Imagine these cubes joined
together by a cord that allows them the flexibility to move and to twist and
turn around, resulting in various movements.

 

 

Balance –

This helps the human body to remain in position and not fall over while
stationary or when in movement. For this, the weight of the body needs to be
properly distributed. Moreover, the state of balance changes according to the
movement. While drawing, this needs to be kept in mind, because otherwise the
images appear unrealistic and disturbing. The centre of gravity has to be
judged, because every figure, when stationary or in movement, has to have a
well-distributed centre of gravity, for example, when a figure is shown as
standing, the centre of gravity is evenly distributed between both his feet.

Light and shade –

With the help of light and shade, we can create highlights or shadows.
Using this we can also add depth and dimension to the image being drawn. To
correctly use this concept in drawing, one needs to have knowledge of the grey
scale that is a scale originating with white at one end and with black at the
other end, with increasing shades of grey in between. All these shades of grey
indicate different conditions of light. An easy exercise to understand this
concept would be to make a sphere and imagine light falling on it from various
angles. Accordingly, it would be dark and light in different parts, as the
light shifts. This concept helps in highlighting various parts of the human
face or the human figure, making it appear cheery or serious.

s

Shape –

This is a basic requirement in drawing that helps to view and draw the
object without any distortion in its form. For this, one has to train the eye
to see the full form of the image, rather than seeing it in parts. Triangles,
circles, ovals and other such irregular shapes are easier to see than simply
linear ones. When drawing the human figure, it is easier to see it as a
composition or combination of various shapes than as a composite whole.

Line of action –

The Line of Action or the Center Line is the imaginary curved line going
from the head or the top of the figure to the bottom. Every figure will have a
line of action; so when one is drawing a figure in an image, the line of action
can be used as a point of reference to draw the outline of the figure.

 

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