FORCE: Drawing Human Anatomy (Force Drawing Series)
Hundreds of years ago, during the 1500s in Italy, the Renaissance exploded. This period in art created some of the most notable artists, “Renaissance men” such as Michelangelo and Leonardo Da Vinci, who created much of the world’s most exquisite art. Much of this art is considered “studies.” That’s right; they drew to study the figure, not to create beautiful drawings. The drawings were by-products of curious and inspired minds.
It is your curiosity that I call forth as we investigate human anatomy. I propose using the drawing language of FORCE as a vehicle to understand how the human body functions, not for the sake of learning how to draw. Your humility to humanity can incite your hunger to become an amazing artist! The human body is both intellectually complex and lyrically poetic.
All of the human body’s systems, including the muscular system, are designed based on FORCES. These FORCES drive the numerous functions of this amazing and complex machine. This machine contains many smaller machines of different types: pulley systems, levers, torque, and an endless amount of inventions that we interact with today are inspired by the mechanics observed in the human machine. George Bridgeman, in fact, compared the different areas of the body to these types of mechanisms in his classic “how-to-draw” book, Constructive Anatomy (1966).
I learn by taking complex ideas and simplifying them down to their bare components. I need to know the basics in order to understand the intricate. Therefore, I have worked hard at clarifying the mysteries and complexities of the human body. This work started with how to structure this book. What is the best way to present the knowledge? It took almost a year to figure out the setup you hold in your hands today. I color-coded the anatomical regions of the figure based on their collective, FORCEFUL functions. Each region presents three sides of rotation so you can see the anatomy from all directions. To constantly remind us of how each area ties into the bigger picture through the rhythms of the figure, I added FORCE figure drawings to each chapter that have the region’s anatomy appropriately color coded.
FORCE is the answer and foundation to anatomy.
Where is a muscle located, and why is it there?
I want you, the reader, the artist, to understand that, when I experience drawing the figure, there are hidden filters I use in my decision-making process. Within each chapter, I discuss those filters, FORCE, form, shape, and then the specific anatomy of that region.
I will share with you the secrets I have learned from the thousands of drawings I have experienced. The body functions in specific ways. There are FORCE rules in place due to the body’s anatomy. In time, you will learn how anatomy is drawn and defined by the function of a pose. I draw the functions, and the anatomy appears, not the other way around. If you draw a deltoid, you get a deltoid. If you draw the thrust into the deltoid, then you will draw that thrust, and therefore the deltoid muscle will be drawn. This difference in thinking is essential to the FORCE drawing experience.
The process I am sharing can help you if you are a hobbyist, an animator, a comic book artist, a concept artist, or a three-dimensional modeler, among many other art disciplines. So, in the spirit of the Renaissance, let us embark on our journey to understand the FORCEFUL function of the human body’s anatomy and, at the same time, be amazed by its beauty!
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