3. Positioning and proportions

This section is all about how to get things in the right place and in proportion. Achieving good proportions and positioning will ultimately lead to life-like figure drawings. Often people get preoccupied with drawing each body part and go straight into tonal detail. Getting alignment and positioning right will result in a more lifelike picture than perfectly rendered body parts that don’t relate naturally to each other in terms of angles and proportion. If anything is too large or small or is at an incorrect angle, the person can end up looking a little deformed – something that every artist has had plenty of experience with at some stage!

We’ll first go through how to achieve a good basic composition on the page.

We’ll then look at why positioning and proportions when drawing a person is so difficult.  We will look at how our eyes and brains interact with the human form, to make it uniquely difficult (and rewarding) as the subject of a drawing.

Then there are sections covering each of the techniques that will help you overcome those challenges. This includes measurement, use of negative space, simplifying the figure into shapes and taking the landscape approach. Finally we will introduce foreshortening and perspective.

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