Basic 101: Class 17
Hands and Feet
I have been reflecting lately how I might be of better service to this thread so I decided to try something new this time. I have included “practice” drawings for the "Time Challenged"--they are basic drawing that you can practice on before commiting yourself to good paper.
When I first started drawing hands, I used to just create all of these blocks and cylinders and would try to work the hand out geometrically. Naturally after the third or fourth attempt, I fell asleep from the boredom. There are many ways to draw hands.
1. Lee Hammond likes the grid method--A LOT of people use this method and it DOES yield suprisingly good results--It does limit you to having to depend on a reference source to grid so gridding can become a self imposed artist pen or corral--much akin to artistically mopping yourself into a corner.
2. Shinichi Ishioka (how to draw manga) prefers breaking the hand down into blocks--while this works--i'd rather be gridding--I have a tendancy to follow the blocks the letter and so my drawings end up looking confined.
3. John Buscema breaks his hand down into cylinders then building from there--same here but in all fairness this is an excellent technique for comic art.
4. I use contour drawing and then I map the shadows--Hey, it works for me.
5. They greatest artist who ever was at WC and you know who you are (yes, I am talking to you) just snaps them off freehand—no fuss, no muss, because you are a major talent.
As Life dictates, however, most of us have to work and struggle for a living and we each have our own little quirky ways of creating hands and feet. Here is how I do it for BOTH feet and hands:
1. Make a mitten. That is right--I said MITTEN. For those of you who do not have the ability to understand Jaydspeak, that means an arm, wrist or leg with an oval on the end of it—NO fingers and NO detail. Easy.
2. Still leaving out the detail, start to form the shape of the hand or foot that you want using CONTOURS ONLY.
3. Once you have the SHAPE of the hand or foot—look at your model and start to draw in as shapes, the shadows. DO NOT FILL IN SHADOWS—THIS IS LINE SHAPES ONLY at this stage.
4. Once you have the shape and the map of the shadows established start lightly filing in the shadow shapes so that you start getting a semblance of a foot or hand.
5. Using tortillions or your favorite smudging or blending device begin blending the map of the shadows together.
6. Once the blending is complete, go back and deepen your shadows. Make any necessary corrections.
YOU CAN SEE THIS TECHNIQUE IN THE EXAMPLES
Hands and feet look relatively simple in construction but they are actually quite complex. Below is a chart of a hand and a foot. Please keep in mind that underneath your drawing is bones—the things that really keeps a hand or an foot together. They are nature's tent poles.
How many bones are there? Well for the hand there is:
1. Distal Phalanx (your finger tips)
2. DIP joint
3. Middle Phalanx
4. Proximal Phlanx
For the foot:
2. Achilles Tendon
Examine the charts and get to know these postions.
is of four hands. Two are of the back of the hand while the other is of the front. Some points to remember regarding the hand:
1. The thumb and the ball attached to it look like a chicken leg quarter.
2. The point where the body of the hand meets the fingers is a curved arc—this is why your middle finger is higher then the others.
3. There are two fleshy areas at the bottom of the hand that create a depression in the palm. I have exaggerated the third hand to illustrate this point.
4. The hand is roughly the same size as the face.
Regarding the feet:
1. The inside ankle is always higher and further toward the front then the outside ankle
2. The foot is roughly larger (read longer) then the face.
3. The little toe is generally back around one quarter the length of the foot
4. The outer ridge of the sole will bulge a bit.
5. If you stand on your tiptoes, the toes will spread in order to support your weight.
6. Oddly, when some toes are totally relaxed they can bend downward as much as 90 degrees.
is a hand grasping a pole. Note how the hand naturally curves around the pole. I have left the lower hand undrawn and have marked the positions of the bones so that you can see how I drew this hand. Again, Mitten, general shape of the hand I want to draw—note shadows—fill in shadows and blend.
is a foot that I have drawn in a semi-tiptoe postion. Note how the toes flatten out and slightly spread. The foot is very springy. Note that I have penciled in a second foot for you to practice on.
is the back of a foot. Note how it slightly leans and note the Achilles tenden in the back. Again, I have included yet another foot for you practice with.
Recommended Reading Lists:
1. How to Draw Manga: Bodies & Anatomy –no author listed
2. Drawing the head and Figure by Jack Hamm—this is an excellent detail book for the human figure.
3. Drawing Real Hands by Lee Hammond—Personally, I am not fond of this book because it places COMPLETE dependence on the use of grids.
Originally posted by Rosic, here are some important links:
How to Draw the Hands and Feet
Artist Field Trip of the Week:
This weeks artist is Rimbauds Shop—this artist has one of the most unique drawing styles that I have seen here at the WC. I have seen some old Japanese erotic prints that come close to this style. Note how he handles the hands and feet and pay attention to how he integrates the hand and feet with the entire body. It is one thing to be able to draw hands and feet but it is another to make the parts fit and this artist does this extremely well. Sit back, click on the link, enjoy and learn: