Critique on figure drawing pls?

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This topic contains 8 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by Sanne 10 years ago.

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    Hi everyone~
    I've been drawing fanart for a while but never really took anatomy seriously untill now... My characters always look stiff and suffer anatomy problems so I decided to do a 100 figure project with special focus on the ribcages and joints. Here are my newest practices (10 minutes each):

    And some 30-second gesture practices:
    super lack of momentum =S

    I'd like to know if there is any "systematic errors", bad habbits, etc. in my drawing before I'm gone too far. Any advice/critique is appreciated!

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    Hi Ashyp! :D

    Good job on getting out there and working on your skills for improvement. It will open up a million new doors for you along the way, I promise. :)

    Your 10 minute poses all look really good! I like that you tried to draw an actual rib cage to properly get the shape down, among other things. You build the image really well on top of that, keeping things proportionate. No issues here!

    For the 30 second gesture practices, you mentioned yourself that motion isn't really present here. The reason why is very likely because it looks like you were focusing more on getting the shapes right, than paying attention to the motion of the model. While it really helped you out in the 10 minute pose study, your detailed basic shapes are your downfall in the 30 second warm up gestures. In 30 seconds, your main focus should be quick, sweeping lines.

    The best way to do that is by drawing some very basic motion lines before you even start thinking about drawing shapes, as explained here:

    These articles are super useful. They will hugely benefit your 30 second gestures. It's okay to let go and not focus on getting decent looking shapes, or even anything that resembles a proper rib cage or hip bones. To be frank, those things are distracting unless your studies are at least 10 minutes long. Simple circles suffice. :)

    I think if you start with the simple motion lines before drawing any shapes, you'll find your quick gesture drawings improving by a lot. Give it a shot and see how it works out for you!

    Other than that, you're on the right path. :D (I also love your illustrations on your DA by the way! They're gorgeous!)


    Thank you for your kind advice Sanne! I didn't expect to get a feedback so soon since this forum seems to be not very populated... so wow thanx again man!!!

    Yes you are right. During 30-sec sessions i always rush to draw the shapes first >< I'm too horrified to not draw a recognizable figure... I'll try to focus on the line of action and simple blobs during my later 30-sec practice. And I also think I'll go back to my old 10min figures and try to draw the line of action on them.

    You're very helpful, thank you <3


    Things can be slow around here, but I do my best to pop in every day now just to check if anyone's posted. :)

    I fully understand the desire to draw 'perfect' shapes in everything. I promise you though, it's very liberating to let go and just draw. 30 second warm ups put you in a very open minded mood for when you work on longer sessions too.

    Drawing the line on action through the 10 minute drawings sound like a good idea! That helps too. :)

    Will you be coming back to follow up with us on the new drawings?


    Sorry for the late reply Sanne. I'm back with some new 30-sec stick people:
    don't look too great I'm afraid :P

    Now I find it hard to keep things in proportion, particularly hard to draw the motion of arms, and extremely hard to spot the line of action without adding unnecessary details. I'll keep practicing!


    Don't worry too much about proportions right now! Those look really good! I can definitely see there's more motion in your new gestures.

    I am seeing some s-shaped lines in some gestures though. They might be throwing you off a little? S-shapes are not as fluid as simple C-shapes and can hamper the feeling of motion. I really see a difference in figures that have S-shape spine lines and C-shape spine lines, and the latter look better. Can you see that too? :)

    I'm super confident that you can figure it out though! Practice makes perfect. :D You've already taken one step forward, and I'm certain many more will follow. Feel free to continue posting your practice sessions, I'll make sure to check in regularly and give you tips if you want them. :)


    Thank you so much for bearing with me >.<

    I don't like S-curves either =S. I drew them when the gesture's too complicate for me to summarize, so I began with the shape of the spine and adding all sorts of details. I just realized yesterday that I can do this↓ instead of starting from the spine:

    I consider myself lucky when I figure out a simple C-curve...and things get even more difficult for me when the model's waist is twisted, eg. like this lady↓
    (sorry I couldn't find the original photo, there're so many photos on this site ><)
    I must have come across this lady at least 5 times. She is like the ultimate puzzle for me!@#^% It feels like she's stretching in every direction. I drew a S-curve for her torso, which I feel very redundant. May I know how would you draw her?


    I think the problem you run into with that particular lady is that you're counting the legs. You should focus the spine line on the torso only. :) The spine doesn't guide the direction of the legs after all! They're separate limbs that can go in completely opposite directions.

    I didn't have a direct image of the photo you drew from, so I used your drawing as a guideline (I also apologize for the lack of proper proportions, I just wanted to focus on the motion line). I exaggerated the motion a little.

    As you can see, the red line centers on the head, torso and the hips. I'm not counting the arms, not counting the legs or anything else.

    Here are some more samples.

    Now I drew all three without a photo sample. I literally just drew random C-shaped lines and then made a pose from it. Perhaps that's something you can try to get more comfortable with it? It really helps to imagine a pose from just that one line to get an understanding of how to build on it. As you can see, the leg positions in no way determine where the spine line goes. If you can work up to that, you'll probably have a full understanding of how to work this and make it happen! :)

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