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Anatomy/etc critiques for a non-artist?

Runefox

Kitsune of the PC Master Race
Hi guys, I wonder if I might be able to get some fresh eyes to look over a couple of recent images I've drawn to see where I'm going with my anatomy and in general. Anatomy's something that I've never really prided myself as a guru for, and though I know what a person looks like, sometimes it's difficult to represent that in art.

I don't study art or anything like that, and I don't consider myself a serious artist - I draw when and what I want, and don't go out of my way to practise very much. That said, I would like to learn to get better with it, and I think some critiquing might help me along.

I should note that I draw with a mouse, so I won't be able to follow any suggestions involving traditional tools. ^^;

I'll post a recent male and recent female (I seem to hang up on males a lot):

Female: Karen Runeblaze (my character)
http://runefox.net/Karen-Bust-Lines.png (mild/tasteful nudity)

Male: Glennjam (Glennjam's character, request)
http://runefox.net/Glennjam.png

And a link to my galleries

http://anthonius.sheezyart.com/ - SA (works which might have 'bits' are censored for SA)
http://www.furaffinity.net/user/runefox/ - FA (when it comes back online)
 
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NinjaWulf

New Member
Quite impressive with drawing with a mouse. I love the poses. You might wanna darken the lines a little more for extra detail if your intending to color it in. But since your not, very good work.


**IDK if you have to but I'd mark the first picture mild nudity
 
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firefly8083

digital artist
wow... you drew that with the mouse? impressive! I am a traditional artist... so I can't really critique you too well... but I did think to tell you the 1... you're very good with the angles on the faces. Very nice! and 2.. the leg (right leg) on the guy really really bugs me... looks concave... that is a hard angle to get... but other than that the pic looks good.

Just work on details... the breast line comes up a little too far on the female... and the back line needs a little more detail. But other than all that... very nice! =3
 

Runefox

Kitsune of the PC Master Race
Quite impressive with drawing with a mouse. I love the poses. You might wanna darken the lines a little more for extra detail if your intending to color it in. But since your not, very good work.
Actually, these lines are much heavier than I use traditionally, and I've been experimenting with varying the widths ever since I started using Inkscape. I'm still getting the feel for line width, so I'll keep working on that. I've traditionally given most of the detail work in that area to my colouring/shading, so I've got to think about how to colour these now.

**IDK if you have to but I'd mark the first picture mild nudity
Yeah... I totally forgot about that. Sorry. Better safe than sorry!

wow... you drew that with the mouse? impressive! I am a traditional artist... so I can't really critique you too well... but I did think to tell you the 1... you're very good with the angles on the faces. Very nice!
Thanks ^^ I actually started drawing with the mouse around the time I started drawing furry art. I found that I could skip the step of scanning things in that way, and the quality of the work didn't seem to suffer. It's because I play a lot of first person shooters. =D Well, there's that, and I hold pencils in a very awkward way, which leads to errors there. As for the face angles, I've really, really, really been trying hard to improve on those, and I think I'm starting to get the hang of it.

2.. the leg (right leg) on the guy really really bugs me... looks concave... that is a hard angle to get... but other than that the pic looks good.
Yeah, I felt the same, but after trying it a few different ways, that looked the most natural, surprisingly. That's one of the reasons I came here. ^^;

the breast line comes up a little too far on the female... and the back line needs a little more detail. But other than all that... very nice! =3
Goes up too far? Hmm... How far is too far? I think I'll have to look at some models and see for myself... ... Yeah, you're right, they're way too far up. Actually, the breasts themselves are. The top of the breast line should be just below the arms, near the armpits... Yeah, I just tried that really quick and it looks a lot more natural. I'm not sure what kind of detail I can give to the back line, however...
 
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QT Melon

AMF Member
I'm not sure sir how to critique you if you don't consider yourself a serious artist. I don't mean serious furry artist, but I don't know how to apply advice if you don't want to practice, which is the most important solution to any improvement. Most art is only done better by practice. If you want to know what direction, you have many to take, and most of which involves practice. This is your hobby, so you may be best off asking your peers or someone with a like minded presence.

I have noticed that most of your art lacks a serious amount of proportions. I can see how one can be easily impressed since this was done by a mouse, your first image lacks the back of a skull, many people can forgive it as long as the face looks nice. Besides one's ability to draw hands and feet which is often a key to the difference between beginners and more serious artists - I noticed you're more into the genitals or to refine this statement- "You like boobs".

You have given no thought to the breasts other than to place them. This made you concentrate on the nipples but not an observation as to how breasts work on the body. Women have collarbones, you have left this out and have the breast lines coming from the neck. Breasts so not just have wonderful round shapes, our breasts are defined by how they are sitting on the rib cage. This is why they are most represented by an "overturned teacup". Gravity pulls the mass of the breasts down, so that the most rounded part is on the bottom, not in the middle. Our breasts move in the direction of a 45 degree angle because of the shape of our rib cage. Much of the curve of the breasts, start from our armpit. These are good landmarks to look for. There is a space between each breasts because of the aforementioned slide from our rib cage - our breasts do not simply hang together. The only time they do is when we wear a bra.

Your second image has a nice face like the other one, but lacks a center of gravity. This makes the movement look unbelievable. His right arm is extremely short, which is another problem with not checking proportions. Learn proportions first, then go into foreshortening.

I once learned that if you study the largest mass on the body which is the torso or rib cage and pelvie it will be easier to get the other parts down. Most artists concentrate on the head and this is why you often see artwork cut off at the thighs because they didn't learn proportions.

This is more a lot of advice, and since you said you're not serious I don't know what you can take from it other than you just need to practice and observe more. Observe nature or realism first, then look at other people's artwork to see how they solved problems you couldn't figure out.
 
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Runefox

Kitsune of the PC Master Race
Well, my major point is that I've never taken my art seriously, but I do want to practise and become better with it, hence my posting this here. I haven't really taken any formal training or anything like that, so everything I've done up to this point has more or less been formed by my own means.

I really appreciate your honesty and looking past the mouse art part of the equation. ^^

I have noticed that most of your art lacks a serious amount of proportions.
That's one of the things I'd like to improve on, really. I've never really been able to judge proportion very well, and that's part of what I mean by anatomy. Again, practise would very likely solve my problem in the long run.

I can see how one can be easily impressed since this was done by a mouse, your first image lacks the back of a skull, many people can forgive it as long as the face looks nice.
That's an interesting notion... I haven't really specifically drawn the back of a head before, so I'm unfamiliar with the way it should look in general. I'm not sure what to do about it other than to practise some from-behind shots and see where that takes me.

I noticed you're more into the genitals or to refine this statement- "You like boobs".
That's a little embarrassing, actually. :p I really don't mean it that way, though maybe deep down, you're right. x__x I've been drawing that character nude for the past while in an attempt to get the form right, and, well, yeah.

You have given no thought to the breasts other than to place them. This made you concentrate on the nipples but not an observation as to how breasts work on the body. Women have collarbones, you have left this out and have the breast lines coming from the neck.
That's something I realized after reading firefly's comment and looking at some models. I'm going to have to take a little more time and see if I can familiarize myself with that.

Breasts so not just have wonderful round shapes, our breasts are defined by how they are sitting on the rib cage. This is why they are most represented by an "overturned teacup". Gravity pulls the mass of the breasts down, so that the most rounded part is on the bottom, not in the middle. Our breasts move in the direction of a 45 degree angle because of the shape of our rib cage. Much of the curve of the breasts, start from our armpit. These are good landmarks to look for. There is a space between each breasts because of the aforementioned slide from our rib cage - our breasts do not simply hang together. The only time they do is when we wear a bra.
Hmm... The last bit is something I've been trying to get away from, and I guess I still haven't totally succeeded. With regard to the general shape, I'm really glad to have some direction on that. ^^; I think I'll try using what you've told me and reference a few more models to try that again. It's probably because I very rarely see women nude that I'm so confused about this. :p I have to admit, I'm having trouble visualizing how they would sit on the ribcage, and how that would make them look one way or another. Again, I guess, this is where I'm coming from by posting here. I notice that you take particular care with this in your artwork, though the breasts you draw are way larger than the ones I tend to draw. It really depends upon the character, though.

Your second image has a nice face like the other one
The face is again something I've been working on a lot, so I appreciate that it's paying off.

but lacks a center of gravity. This makes the movement look unbelievable.
I thought that (it seems like he's going to tip over, doesn't it?), but I'm not sure at this time how to go about seeing where the centre of gravity should be and how to use it properly. The tutorials I've been leafing through in the sticky here only really seem to mention it, don't really go into detail.

This and other movement has been something I've been working on a lot, and I really don't think I have the hang of it yet.

His right arm is extremely short, which is another problem with not checking proportions. Learn proportions first, then go into foreshortening.
Would you happen to have any resources that I might be able to read and reference for learning proportions? Again, leafing through the already-posted tutorials in the sticky here don't seem to provide any really good references to that.

I once learned that if you study the largest mass on the body which is the torso or rib cage and pelvie it will be easier to get the other parts down. Most artists concentrate on the head and this is why you often see artwork cut off at the thighs because they didn't learn proportions.
The torso? I'm not sure how that really helps, but I'll give it a try anyway. Again, the torso is something that I'm trying to improve upon. Looking back through some of my older drawings, I may well have unknowingly had a better understanding of these things than I do now. Then again, way back then, I used to only draw people standing up straight, so that might have helped me along.

This is more a lot of advice, and since you said you're not serious I don't know what you can take from it other than you just need to practice and observe more. Observe nature or realism first, then look at other people's artwork to see how they solved problems you couldn't figure out.
Observing is something that I do a lot, both in artwork and in reality. The only notes I make, however, are mental ones. Practising? I think I'm going to open a thread in The Art Exchange and force myself to draw several times a week. I've been contemplating that, and reading what you're saying here, that's likely the best thing I could be doing.

Thanks a lot for the post! Your help's really appreciated.
 
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Anbessa

Member
I'll try and give some more detailed advice. please note that I am far from being pro either, it's my hobby, and I can't take it too serious. but I am 90% self-taught, and I can say without good advice it takes you many years to reach any goal. trust me, it took me 14 years to reach a point where I dared asking for comissions...

Karen: face looks nice, although a bit wide. a face with these proportions should have the eyes nearer to each other. as a thumbline you can put a helping line from the nostrils back in a straight manner, and place the inner eye corner there. the missing back of the head as mentioned by QTmelon comes from this partially; you also should take into account that there needs to be a cranium where the neck spine connects with the skull. ver much like a human skull, really. animal heads have their neck connect to the back of the cranium which wouldn't work with straight upright human-like stance. thus, looking into human anatomy is helpful. the neck itself is 50% too thin, I'd say. everything else has been mentioned already.

Glenn: it looks like you tried to create a scene with him running in an enraged, flailing manner. not bad for starters, at least you go for more complicated things.
the pose looks off quite a bit, it starts with the shoulders. the arms are too high, even if it'd be a snapshot. and the fluff at the elbow is a bit too much... the back of the head is missing, and again, the neck is too thin. the torso has about the right length, as have the legs; only their forms are out of order, sotosay. and the tail should start a bit higher. remember, the tail is an extertion of the spine, and should root right above the seat muscles. you could place it deeper down, but then the skin of tail and seat would constantly rub against each other; doesn't work.
legs: the left upper leg is bent the wrong way, really. I don't want to insult you, but I can't see how you could think this looks natural EVER. I mean, look at your own legs... preferably in a full-size mirror.
the bone is generally straight, every curve would come from the muscles around it. which means, the underline is almost straight with a slight curve downwards, and the upper line is slightly bent upwards, with a couple strange forms connecting it to the pelvis. (use photos for this, it really helps) the kneecap is visible only on straight legs, and here your bent knee looks about right. as does the foreshortening of the foreleg compared to the pose. the sntanding leg should have been straight placed onto the ground. I know feetsies from up front are tricky and can look odd, but it would have been your way to go. with a leg pose like this he would be about to go to the ground. but that will come with practise.

okay, now for basics.
a good book for reference would be "The Art Of Animation Drawing" by yours truly, Don Bluth. even if you are not into animation art, the proportions are about the same (unless with chibi and deformeed, of course), and it will give you ideas about how to create action poses. likewise, a book on anatomical drawing can give you ideas on where to place which muscle.
line weight: generally, outer lines are thicker, also those of say we, an arm above a chest. details like seams, folds, small fluff can stay fine lined, while everything that can throw a shadow should receive a thicker line. books on comic book inking can help you, although I don't own some myself. my bookshelf is crowded enough as it is. :) if you put a thick outline around the complete figure it becomes something of a bumper sticker, losing all shapes and forms. some artists out there enjoy this look, but personally I think it simply looks odd.
translucent hair... isn't. XD of course if you want to keep it, it's your choice.
as for measuring proportions, I employ a rather coarse method: I draw a generous circle for the head, including the shoulders, and measure it four more times down to the feet. male hips are placed a bit above the middle, female ones a good bit higher. (actually, many women seem to have shorter torsos in comparison to male ones. I have read a warning about this on the page of a latex clothes manufacture...) arms would be two measures, and the hand added to the forearm. the legs are divided almost equally, with the foreleg a good bit longer. if you employ digitgrade legs, shorteh the foreleg a bit and add the foot to it. if you do it, remember the paws must stand underneath the center-of-weight which is located right above the hip bone. and the knee and ankle aren't stretched straight.

and, this means no insult at all, use a pencil and a soft eraser on cheap paper to practise. you don't need to scan and post it if you don't want to, but it would people give a point where to criticise you properly, and helpful. and, even a failure means you have learned somethign new, like this doesn't work that way. scribbling away with the mouse doesn't teach you the basics. likewise, if you buy a cheap sketchbook you can take it everywhere and practise wherever you want, and opportunity knocks. it doesn't chrash, needs no power, and you can take as long as you want.

I hope this helps you. if it reads like a rant, I apologize; it wasn't meant that way. blame the language barrier, if needed.

practise on. :)
 

Runefox

Kitsune of the PC Master Race
That's a lot of information to take in all at once. What a huge post! While I'm a little disappointed that I'm not a little better in some of the areas you're talking about, I can't really say I'm surprised. I'll make a more detailed response a little later, but I have to ask because I find this point extremely interesting - You wrote a book?
 

thebeast76

Just a friendly robot
Hmm, the only thing I can see with Karen is her abdomen seems a tad long and spindly. Shorten it a bit and you'll be right on the money IMO!
 

QT Melon

AMF Member

Anbessa

Member
That's a lot of information to take in all at once. What a huge post! While I'm a little disappointed that I'm not a little better in some of the areas you're talking about, I can't really say I'm surprised. I'll make a more detailed response a little later, but I have to ask because I find this point extremely interesting - You wrote a book?

well, apologies if I crushed you and your hopes. I think it's better to come up with polite, and honest opinions and critics instead of somethign you'd like to hear, but is a lie.
or something.
granted, I have seen much worse, especially on VCL, from people who draw like 5-year-olds who learned to put the pointed end of the pencil onto the paper instead of into their lil' sister's ear for more than 400+ images, and have the guts to write something like, "I'm extremely pleased with how this came out, I'm so proud of it!"
oh yeah, the background photo is rendered really good, like.

no really. you at least know you are far from being perfect, and on that basis we can give you advice and know you'd listen closely. :)

sorry for becoming so talkative. XD

no; I don't have written a book. I just have come a long way (something around 16 years of dilletantism) with my art, and I critic/comment the way I'd like to receive it. people even compliment me on it, like I do something so special...

granted, in times I sit there with a head as red as a lobster from some critic, I'm no exception. but I take a deep breath and try better next time.

*scritches* don't worry. you'll become better in no time.
 
well, apologies if I crushed you and your hopes. I think it's better to come up with polite, and honest opinions and critics instead of somethign you'd like to hear, but is a lie.
or something.
granted, I have seen much worse, especially on VCL, from people who draw like 5-year-olds who learned to put the pointed end of the pencil onto the paper instead of into their lil' sister's ear for more than 400+ images, and have the guts to write something like, "I'm extremely pleased with how this came out, I'm so proud of it!"
oh yeah, the background photo is rendered really good, like.

Um...I don't believe Runefox took your critique too personally. At least from my perspective. >>;
 
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