Drawing the Human Form >> Tip of the day Dec 2015 No.14

by Madelein Venter
(RSA)

Leonardo da Vinci Skull

Leonardo da Vinci Skull


Not many beginners have entered the life class with any knowledge of the structure of the human skeleton. In the course of a day, it has to be practiced consistently if you are to rise up to being a professional.

One is inclined to dispose of bone for flesh BUT you will not get far without an in-depth study of bone structure. I have to add that Michelangelo and Leonardo and many others went to great lengths to understand these basics of anatomy. Just check out their earlier drawings.

The skeleton is the anchor for the flesh as well as for the muscles, tendons and fat. One point here is that bones, muscles and flesh DO SHOW up on the surface and the skeleton is not entirely hidden with a covering of flesh!

The bones of the head and trunk serve as protective enclosures for organs—much of the skeleton determines the shape. The presence on the surface is betrayed only be your eyes where you ignore what cannot be seen. This is a big mistake to make.

Observations: bones unite with one another in various ways. Many of the unions are “locked” joints while some only show during a passive movement.

It would be more beneficial to learn how to draw the skull and its 22 bones that compose the framework. The average skull is 8.5 inches high.

So if you are going to start drawing super-heroes you’d better get these proportions right. If you study the super-hero you will see his head is much smaller than the norm (It makes the body appear much larger).

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