Drawing Class Lesson 8: Figure Drawing

Today we will be drawing from a model. Figure drawing is one of the oldest methods for improving drawing abilities. It provides an endless amount of problems to solve and there are many different facets to take into consideration. I understand it is impossible to teach everything about figure drawing in one session, so I’d like to go over the basics first before we begin.

Before starting a drawing from a longer pose it is important to loosen up. This is done by what’s called gesture drawings. Gesture drawings are quick drawings, generally completed in 2 to 3 minutes which capture the gesture of the figure. A gesture drawing serves only to catch the overall feeling of a pose or an object. Whether it is animation, character design, or painting and graffiti, gesture drawings serve as the whole upon which the rest of the drawing is hung. It’s a loose skeleton to be refined at a later stage.

In this tutorial below you can see how a professional character designer warms up with gesture drawing.

Gesture drawings all convey a sense of rhythm abd movement. It is at the heart of graffiti. Which is why the first step to learning how to spray, is to start with tags.

Anatomy can be taken into consideration however isn’t a necessary component for figure drawing. However, the more you know about your subject, the better that you can draw it.

Gesture drawing is also at the heart of character design and comic book illustrations.

Figure drawings can also be based completely off the interplay of light and shadow on the structure of the human body.