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Figure Drawing Using Stick Figures and Manekin

When learning figure drawing, the stick-figure approach to sketching the human body is an old but reliable method.

You can achieve far more action in your sketches by using the stick figure as a start in attempting to capture movement.

By roughly indicating head, rib cage, and pelvic areas, more resemblance to the human figure can be shown.

It is only a short step, then, to reshaping the arms and legs to complete the figure.

Figure Drawing with the Manekin

A manikin can be a big help in figure drawing.

There are several types available, and two popular models are shown here.

These 2 manikins are useful for anatomical study and for experiments with light as an aid in revealing form and shading.

The "square" manekin sketches are designed to show the plane structure of the human figure.

You can learn a great deal about the large masses of the figure by placing the manikin in various positions, and that will be the foundation for you to start drawing from life.

Of course, an alternative to manekins is using nude pictures. Whilst you don't have the actual sense of "depth" in a picture, you can at least practice how light affects the shadows in the contours of human skin and shape.

A good set of nude "burlesque" pictures serves this purpose well. You can use these models to practice your figure drawing skills. Hey! It's much cheaper than live models, don't you agree?

Rokeby Venus, by Velazquez


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