About Kim

Hi, I'm Kim. I built these drawing tools to keep myself in practice after I graduated from college. Over time, they've become more popular than I had ever imagined. During the day, I'm a web developer, and create websites for businesses & non-profits.

Results of our fundraiser

With your help, we raised $8768 toward:

  • Rebuilding and repairing the site to make it more stable in the face of the incredible demand
  • The building of new membership features that will allow the site to better support itself and offer regular updates and new photo packs
  • Optional “in-class” drawing tutorials.
  • Goal setting, progress tracking and achievements.
  • The ability to immediately upload your work to the site after a Line of Action practice session, and optionally submit those drawings for critique with just a few clicks.
  • User profiles where you can store, categorize and display your artwork for the Line of Action community.
  • More detailed pose selection when setting up yor practice sessions – go beyond just male or female and choose sitting, running, dancing, jumping, and more.
  • And more!

As you’ll recall, our goal tiers were…

  • $10,000 – Programming begins on the new site membership features! We anticipate opening this section of the site for business approximately 2 months after work begins.
  • $15,000 – 2 new full body photo shoots with a range of diversity in model ethnicity, age and body-type are scheduled.
  • $20,000 – Professional profiles added to the site for members, to show off your work to potential employers and commissioners with absolutely no need for coding. A new hands/feet photoshoot and a faces/expressions photoshoot will be scheduled, with a range of diversity in model ethnicity, age and body-type.
  • $30,000 – Real life university art professors brought in to critique member’s practice sketches and offer helpful feedback and guidance.

We didn’t quite make it to that $10,000 level, which means we may not be able to include all of the features we had hoped at first launch — we’ll continue to work on building them steadily over time, along with the scheduling of photoshoots. Thanks to what we did raise, we are about to be in such a stronger position for supporting those activities!

As far as getting that new site ready; we’re saying two months to be safe, but work has already begun and we are going all out to have the new site ready for your enjoyment ASAP. I’m really hopeful we’ll be able to open our doors sooner than that. I am deeply passionate about keeping Line of Action available to the world, and I am beyond overjoyed you’ve given me this opportunity to make such major improvements to it.

I will keep you thoroughly up to date as those efforts progress. :)

Claiming your backer rewards

As soon as the new membership features become available, emails will go out to all backers containing codes that you can apply to an existing account, a new account, or even give to a friend (or perhaps family member who is on their way to art school!)

Reminder: Because so many people have historically used the tools without having accounts, we’re not linking fundraising donations to any particular account right now. If you don’t see your donation to this particular fundraiser on your account, that is okay!! If you got a receipt, you have been counted and will get your reward code. :)

 A sincere thank you to everyone who contributed. You are making a real and tangible difference to our entire community.

Last day of our fundraiser!

We are roughly 80% of the way to our first funding goal! This tier is the one that’s going to enable us to rebuild the underlying code of the site, making it faster and stronger in the face of huge worldwide demand. It will enable us to keep the site running for many more years to come, even as demand rises, and offering our basic tools for free.

This same code rebuild will suddenly enable us to create a range of wonderful new features that expand and deepen your daily artistic practice, and give the site a means to support itself and fund future photoshoots, features and maintenance without the need for big fundraisers like this one.

Don’t miss out!

During this fundraiser, you can get an entire year of our new membership features for $25! After this fundraiser, this price will go to $14.95/month, or $9.99/month for students.

Check out all our other backer rewards:

Backer rewards:

  • $1 and up: 3 months of paid membership when the new features launch (redeemable once.)
  • $5 and up: 6 months of paid membership when the new features launch (redeemable once.)
  • $15 and up: 9 months of paid membership when the new features launch (redeemable once.)
  • $25 and up: 12 months of paid membership when the new features launch (redeemable once.)
  • $50 and up: Everything from the $20 tier, and you get to request a specific pose to be shot in our next live model photo shoot (some restrictions apply.)
  • $100 and up: Everything from the $50 tier, and a Line of Action tote bag to carry all your art supplies in.
  • $200 and up: Everything from the $100 tier, lifetime paid membership, and 3 months of advertisement placements in our sidebar (some restrictions apply.)

Contribute now!

What happens if you don’t reach the tier 1 goal?

If we fall short of our $10,000 goal, we’ll still go ahead with rebuilding the underlying code of the site – it’s too important to our entire community of artists to risk not doing that!

It WILL mean we won’t be able to include all of the NEW features that we had hoped to at the time of our re-launch, but we will strive to add them all over time instead of right away.

Thank you to everyone who has participated so far; you are making the continuation of the Line of Action you know and love possible, and allowing us to do even more for you.

Announcing our planned membership levels

Line of Action offering its tools as an entirely free service has allowed us to provide huge benefits to hundreds of thousands of art students around the world. I’ve received letters from people whose artistic skills have improved through daily gesture drawing classes on Line of Action, from art students whose grades have been saved through access to our tools, even people in rural areas with no other access to art classes who have had their first taste of figure study on this site. Stories like these make Line of Action one of the things I am most proud of creating in my life, and motivates me to make sure it remains available, for free, to the world.

In some ways, being an entirely free service has also held us back; the thing we all most most of all is more high quality images, and there hasn’t been funding to hold our own photoshoots in many years. I’ve received thousands of emails suggesting wonderful new features. But work on the site has not been possible beyond the most minimal support to keep the site up and running; and even that is now in jeopardy as demand for the tools continues to climb and we begin to experience more and more painful site slowness and even down-times.

That’s why we need and deserve a new vision for Line of Action. We had the following major values in mind as we designed this next evolution of Line of Action:

  1. To maintain the tools as they exist now in their free form, so that the global art community can continue to benefit.
  2. To offer additional, premium perks to those users who chose to financially support us, so the site can continue to grow and flourish.
    • To offer a wide variety of support levels, both recurring and non-recurring, so that most everyone who sees the site as having value has a method of participating in improving it and still some kind of “thank you” benefit for whatever they can do.
    • To ensure that those paid-member perks are useful in furthering an artist’s study, and even career.
    • The ability to offer discounts and even “scholarships” to students and other artists in financial need.
  3. To give the site a method of frequently updating with new photos, features, and timely support.
  4. To be able to show our support for fellow artists by appropriately compensating the models and photographers for their time and craft when we hold our own photoshoots.

Based on these goals and values, we have come up with the following plan for premium memberships and other purchasable perks:

Planned Account Levels:

  • Free member – Looks very similar to what is available to people using the site today! Can use the tools, have a basic profile, and use the forums. Sees a small number of ads here and there to subsidize their usage.
  • No ads member – For just $1.49 a month, all ads will be removed from the site experience, and you’ll gain access to goal setting and progress tracking features, as well as a limited number of additional tutorials each month.
  • Full member – A standard full membership will be $14.95 a month. Members who can provide a valid student ID can sign up for $9.99 a month. We will also offer a limited number of “scholarship” full memberships to community members with financial need.What will full members receive? Extras galore to help sharpen up your artistic skills! Of course everything from the no ads level, along with more tool photos, professional portfolios to show to potential employers or commissioners, the ability to immediately upload your work to the site after a Line of Action practice session, and optionally submit those drawings for critique with just a few clicks, and more – even, when we hit this funding level, the possibility of feedback on your Line of Action practice drawings from real life university art professors!

When we add new batches of “premium” photos:

  • For the first 3 months, they will only be accessible by purchasing that photo pack (typically a one-time $1.49 purchase.) Anyone can purchase early access to a photo pack, and if they do so, they will continue to have access forever even if they do not have a full membership or their full membership expires. If all you want is more photos and aren’t interested in any of the other new features, this may be for you! This will allow us to rapidly raise capitol toward even more photo shoots, to keep those new practice poses coming! For those photoshoots we did not do ourselves, we’re working on methods of profit sharing with the photographers who offer us high quality photos as well.
  • After 3 months, the photos will then become available to all full members at no charge. Non-members or ads-free members can continue to add them to their account as an à la carte purchase.
  • Some photo packs will become available to everyone after 12 months. This means that even those who cannot become members for some reason or another will continue to see the site improve and remain useful over time. Others will remain membership perks/à la carte purchases as a thank you to those who are able to support those improvements.

I hope this feels like a fair balance to you!

In order to help us reach this new evolution, where the site has the means to support not only its continued existence but its continued improvement, we’re currently holding a fundraiser where you can get 3 full months of FULL membership for just $1.49, 12 months of FULL membership for $25, and a lifetime FULL membership for $200! It’s unlikely that these huge discounts will ever be available again. I urge you to take advantage of them while they’re here! It’s good for you and good for the entire community. :)

We’re looking for better names for “no-ads memberships” and “full memberships.” Feel free to comment with a suggestion! ;)

Fundraising update #2

Great progress! We’ve reached 57% of our first funding goal! Can you help us get to 65% today?

This fundraiser isn’t just about getting cool new features and photos for the site that you’ve desperately wanted for years (though it’s about that too!) It’s about seemingly boring but critical repairs and upgrades that are needed to keep the site online. With 31,000 people using the site every week, we’re stretching the limits of what our underlying build can handle. You’ve all experienced those awful slowdowns or even downtimes under the weight of that demand.

But with this fundraiser, our community has the opportunity to fix that.

We have the opportunity to ensure that Line of Action can continue to offer its awesome practice tools to the world for free for another decade to come.

And more than that: we have the opportunity to make it better than it ever was before, and give us a method to provide for new features and photos even long after we’ve completed this initial fundraiser.

Your questions answered: How do I redeem my backer benefits?

Because so many people have historically used the tools without having accounts, we’re not linking fundraising donations to any particular account right now.

Once the new features are built, we’ll be emailing out codes to backers which they can apply to an existing account, a new account, or even give to a friend (or perhaps family member who is on their way to art school??)

Reminder: please share the videos from our Facebook page to help get the word out!

Please also consider tweeting about us with the hashtag #lineofaction.

Thank you to everyone who has participated so far! Already contributed? Consider doing so again to raise your contribution level and get an even better set of thank you rewards!… Or maybe donate in someone else’s name as a gift, for the art student in your life!

Did you know we’re on Facebook? and other news

Just a smattering of Line of Action news to keep you in the loop and brighten your day…

Follow us on Facebook

Did you know that we have a Facebook page now? Follow it for real time Line of Action update news, drawing and anatomy tips, spotlights on fellow students, and more. :)

New photos in the works

I’m almost afraid to mention it in case I jinx it, but… Although we haven’t yet reached the fundraising goal levels that will allow us to schedule our own photoshoot and produce the exact images you have been requesting, we are talking to some of the photographers that have supplied us with some of our best practice images of the past, and it looks like we may have a few new donated batches soon! We’re working on updated our agreements to allow us more freedom with how the images can be used, so we can continue to improve the site going forward.

“Too fast timer” bug fixed

Over the last month, we’d been getting reports that a minority of people were experiencing an error in the practice tools where the timer would suddenly go too fast, sometimes turning 30 seconds poses into 10 second poses. Yuck! With some help from wonderful community members providing me the clues to track it down, I was able to create and release a patch that should take care of this issue. Please let me know if it pops up for you again.

Fundraiser progress

We are at 38% of our first fundraising goal! When we reach it, work can begin on the new site membership features! This will include amazing features like optional “in-class” drawing tutorials, goal setting, progress tracking and achievements, the ability to immediately upload your work to the site after a Line of Action practice session, and optionally submit those drawings for critique with just a few clicks, and more.

Can you help us reach 40% today?
There are some wonderful backer rewards in it for you if you can!

Remember, if we can fully fund all our goal levels, we will be able to schedule new photoshoots to produce new practice photos, with an emphasis on diversity in body type, age and ethnicity!!!

Fundraising update #1

In the last 18 days, we’ve raised almost $3,000, or 30% of our first funding goal.

That’s a great start, but with 31,000 people using the site per week, we have room for improvement. ;) There’s absolutely no reason why we shouldn’t be able to hit all of our goals before this fundraiser is over, and get all of the incredible new features and photos the community deserves!

Here’s what we’ve been up to and how you can help to get the word out about Line of Action.

Please help by sharing our promo videos

We’ve put together two promo videos, and posted them publicly to our new Facebook page! Please share from our Facebook posts to help get the word out!

Fundraiser extended

Now that we have these great promo videos, we’re extending our fundraiser until the 21st to give us all more time to get the word out. The more capitol we raise in June and July, the more of our new features and photo shoots can be implemented this year! The Line of Action community deserves a great big juicy update, and I am chomping at the bit to be able to create them for you. :)

New backer reward added

After a few of you made requests, we have added a permanent lifetime membership to the $200 backer tier!

Thank you to everyone who has participated so far

Already contributed? Consider doing so again to raise your contribution level and get an even better set of thank you rewards!

Do you have ideas about how we can get more backers? Please let us know!

The Next Evolution of Line of Action

Line of Action had humble beginnings, starting as a simple practice tool I built for myself to keep practicing after graduating from college. I told a few friends contibabout it, and they told a few friends — and now the site has grown into a global community, visited by 31,000 people each week from 158 countries around the world.

I have received letters from major universities telling me that these tools are now incorporated into their official curriculum, and I have received letters from individuals saying that they live in countries where attending an art class with a live, nude model could mean being charged with a major crime, and that this site has granted them their first opportunity to experience a figure study class.

It’s an awe-inspiring and wonderful feeling to know that Line of Action has changed so many lives around the world. I have recently made major life changes so that I am able to give beautiful projects like this one the time and attention they deserve, so that people like you, in every nation, can grow in their art practice. You’ve already felt the benefits!

Now I’m asking for your help: Be part of the next evolution of Line of Action! We are expanding the site to make more possible and to give you more support in reaching your artistic goals.

Upcoming new membership features:

  • Optional “in-class” drawing tutorials.
  • Goal setting, progress tracking and achievements.
  • The ability to immediately upload your work to the site after a Line of Action practice session, and optionally submit those drawings for critique with just a few clicks.
  • User profiles where you can store, categorize and display your artwork for the Line of Action community.
  • Optional “professional” portfolios where you can showcase your best work to potential employers or commissioners.
  • More practice photos!!!
  • More detailed pose selection when setting up yor practice sessions – go beyond just male or female and choose sitting, running, dancing, jumping, and more.
  • The possibility of feedback on your Line of Action practice drawings from real life university art professors!
  • … and more!

Contribute now!

Our mission is still to support art students around the world in their daily practice goals even as the site grows into something that can support itself and support regular updates and improvements, so the existing practice tools you know and love will continue to exist, free of charge. I understand that sometimes, money is tight for students. However, if you are in a position to be part of this, please contribute to this funding drive and be a part of expanding Line of Action!

Your buy-in makes all the programming and photo shoots possible that will take our community to the next level.

Backer rewards:

  • $1 and up: 3 months of paid membership when the new features launch (redeemable once.)
  • $5 and up: 6 months of paid membership when the new features launch (redeemable once.)
  • $15 and up: 9 months of paid membership when the new features launch (redeemable once.)
  • $25 and up: 12 months of paid membership when the new features launch (redeemable once.)
  • $50 and up: Everything from the $20 tier, and you get to request a specific pose to be shot in our next live model photo shoot (some restrictions apply.)
  • $100 and up: Everything from the $50 tier, and a Line of Action tote bag to carry all your art supplies in.
  • $200 and up: Everything from the $100 tier, lifetime paid membership, and 3 months of advertisement placements in our sidebar (some restrictions apply.)

Funding levels

  • $10,000 – Programming begins on the new site membership features! We anticipate opening this section of the site for business approximately 2 months after work begins.
  • $15,000 – 2 new full body photo shoots with a range of diversity in model ethnicity, age and body-type are scheduled.
  • $20,000 – Professional profiles added to the site for members, to show off your work to potential employers and commissioners with absolutely no need for coding. A new hands/feet photoshoot and a faces/expressions photoshoot will be scheduled, with a range of diversity in model ethnicity, age and body-type.
  • $30,000 – Real life university art professors brought in to critique member’s practice sketches and offer helpful feedback and guidance.

Contribute now!

Whether you are able to contribute to Line of Action or not, make sure to share this page!

Animal Leg Anatomy Cheat Sheet

We’ve spoken before about that oh-so common artist’s mistake of believing that some animals have “backwards knees.” But in that original post, we only discussed “digitigrades.” Digitigrades are animals that walk on their toes, with the “sole” of their feet off the ground, like cats and dogs — this leads to the common myth that they have “backwards knees,” as their ankles are easily mistaken for knees by humans who don’t walk on their toes all of the time!

A drawing of a dog's back leg bones, demonstrating that what people commonly mistake for the knee is actually the ankle.

Diagram of a dog’s back leg

But take care, not all four legged animals are digitigrade. Today, we’ll look deeper into this topic and explore some other animal leg styles.

 

A drawing of a monkey's skeleton, demonstrating the positioning of the knee and ankle joints.

A diagram of a monkey

Plantigrades are animals that walk on the soles of their feet. The animal in this category that you know best are humans, but bears, mice, raccoons, weasels, and monkeys are also plantigrades. It’s typically much easier for artists breaking into drawing animals to learn to draw plantigrade critters, because their back legs are configured in a familiar way; unless, of course, they’ve been told about digitigrades! Then some artists will attempt to apply that knowledge even to plantigrade animals, leading to some unintentional tip-toeing bear drawings.

 

A drawing of a horse's skeleton, demonstrating the positioning of the knee and ankle joints.

A diagram of a horse

Horses, donkeys, pigs, gazelles and most other animals with hooves are ungulates. Ungulates are animals that walk on their nails (hooves are just big nails!) rather than their toes. Picture these critters as the en pointe ballerinas of the animal kingdom.

 

A drawing of a bird's skeleton, demonstrating the positioning of the knee and ankle joints.

A diagram of a bird

Birds are among the most difficult to recognize anatomically, as their upper legs are actually inside of their body, hiding some of the points you’d normally recognize in a leg. However, most birds are digitigrades, and again, what most people assume is a backward knee is actually their ankle!

A drawing of an ostrich's skeleton, demonstrating the positioning of the knee and ankle joints.

Diagram of an ostrich

Better pause, animal categories and more

A major new patch was released for the drawing tools today! This release includes:

  • The pause button no longer puts a dialog box in front of the image, so you can now feel free to pause on images that capture your fancy and spend as long as you want finishing your drawing if you wish.
  • Better image pre-loading, so you don’t waste precious drawing seconds waiting for each image to load.
  • A loading spinner when you do have to wait for an image to load, so it’s clear the tools are working and haven’t crashed.
  • A fix for the iOS image resizing issues, where images frequently got cut off on iPads and iPhones. If you used to suffer from this issue but no longer do, please let me know this patch worked for you!
  • Break messages no longer advance the photos.
  • Break messages now include the exact recommended break length, instead of just showing it in the “time left” timer, to help you stay on schedule for your at-home class.
  • The faint black background that is meant to make the timer easier to see no longer goes away if the image does not have a photographer credit associated with it, meaning it’s easier to read the timer no matter what image you’re viewing.
  • Forums on small screens (mobile phones) will now show you who the last person to reply to a topic was, so it’s easier to tell if you’ve gotten a response without opening each topic.
  • Better categories for the animal drawing tool
    • The “All but insects & other creepy crawlies” option has been restored
    • A new “All” option that gets you all animals of all kinds has been added.
    • When you click “Only show live animals” it no longer erroneously tells you “no images fit this criteria.”

With all new code, there’s always a chance for new bugs. If you encounter bugs and issues with this new version, please post about them on the Support Forum, or submit a bug report via the contact form.

If you enjoy this update, please consider supporting us. :)

EDIT 5/19/2018 6:20 PM PST: A second patch has just been released to address a bug that prevented class mode from advancing beyond the 30 second warmups.