I find when i start thinking about measuring I kick into OCD mode and go at it for way too long.
What is the fastest way to keep things in proportion ? I sometimes feel like i should be memorizing how high and wide things are in heads.
But then when i do gesture drawings that aren't smooth and flow out like water..and im measuring a ton.. It feels like I am thinking too hard.
Let me know if you have had this problem and thanks in advance.
Perhaps you'd find it more productive to measure in terms of equal length relationship. E.g. length of thigh = length of torso = length of shin and height of foot combined. Angles work too: e.g. the nipple lies on the line connecting the shoulder arc to the pubic symphysis.
As far as measurement goes, you've gotta strike a balance between knowing your ratios with your abstract sense of wrong and right. Mark your guidelines and hang the figure over them rather than measure every small piece.
The pelvis is too deep to be easily visible, but you can use several points to position it: pubic symphysis, iliac spines, and the sacrum. For correct positioning of hips, locate the trochanters and ischiac bones.
Hmmm...gesture isn't about measuring it is about action and movement, so don't get caught up in measuring there. Pick up "Drawing Essentials" by Deborah Rockman for great information about measuring (as well as evertyhing else related to observational drawing).
Also try not to get caught up in ideal proportions - the body is rarely in a pose that follows any pre-conceived measurements. Instead look for relationaships and measure angles, negative spaces, distances in comparison to each other.
All the posters are giving you good stuff.
I spent the better part of yesterday lurking Briggsy Ashtons' site(s) after lurking the "Colors I will Strangle you" thread.
He's an instructor and offers this procedure on his site:
That said, again, if I'm not mistaken, I believe the trochanters would be located somewhere between the apex of the outer curve of the upper thigh and the space under the illiac crest.
Again, you've gotta eyeball what you can't see. Know the skeleton and lay it over the meat in front of you using the branepower. My useless high school art teacher would yell at us "draw what you see, not what you know" - only semi-useful advice. Draw what you see using what you know, and use what you see to augment what you know.
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Point stands - it's basically somewhere near the apex of the outer curve of the thigh since it pushes out from under the muscles of the upper thigh. I can actually lock mine in a weird way against some of the pelvic muscles. Not a fan.