The Basics of Drawing Anatomy for Artists


Drawing Anatomy

How to draw anatomy.
Learn anatomy for artists.

The study of human anatomy, for artists, can be as simple and straightforward as learning about proportions and working from life, or as involved and complex as mastering an understanding of the skeletal, muscular, and surface structure of the human body. Artists pursue anatomy drawing to learn how to draw a human form as it appears in various positions or postures. Oftentimes, anatomy for the artist revolves around creating detailed anatomy drawings and anatomy sketches that can be referred back to in the studio.

This topic page will guide you towards links, resources and youtube tutorials to help you on your way to mastering drawing the human body. For more inspiration, follow Artist Daily’s Anatomy board on Pinterest.

Anatomy drawing techniques

Learn to draw men and women.
Learn anatomy drawing basics with our free tutorial.

Drawing male vs female hips
Many artists who focus exclusively on the female form struggle to translate their talent to drawing men. That’s why it’s important to study the two forms and practise drawing people and their different forms.

Drawing feet
A quarter of our bones are in our feet, which can make feet among the most difficult things parts of the body to draw. A good way to master the foot structure is to study medical drawings of the bones and work from there to muscles and skin.

Anatomy drawing inspiration
Medical books are a great place to start when discovering the human form. After all, Da Vinci himself drew directly from cadavers. Learning the position of ligaments and tendons will teach you the right way that muscles sit on the body, and avoid any awkard positioning of muscle structure.

Drawing gestures
By learning how to draw gestures – even by means of simple stick drawing at first – you can expand your understanding of how the body looks when creating those movements. By mastering common poses, you can improve your anatomy drawing dramatically.

Common anatomy drawing mistakes
Forgetting about the natural variations in skin can result in inaccuracies when drawing live models. Always take into account a model’s sun tan and natural pigmentation when you’re coding the values of the skin tones, since that will cause certain parts of the body to appear more forward or backward than others.



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Courtney Jordan

About Courtney Jordan

  Courtney is the editor of Artist Daily. For her, art is one of life’s essentials and a career mainstay. She’s pursued academic studies of the Old Masters of Spain and Italy as well as museum curatorial experience, writing and reporting on arts and culture as a magazine staffer, and acquiring and editing architecture and cultural history books. She hopes to recommit herself to more studio time, too, working in mixed media.