Atanas Laskov 🏳️‍🌈

3 Figure Drawing Examples

August 11, 2021 18:32 BST

To further my knowledge of the human anatomy I did some figure drawing recently. See below the results – a profile study, a front view, and a study of the muscles of the back. They are based on a Roman bas-relief of Antinous – the lover of Emperor Hadrian, and another Roman sculpture. Classical models are simplified (in a good way), so you really have to fill-in the gaps using your own knowledge of anatomy.

The tools I used are graphite pencil, and Faber-Castel watercolour pencils; There is also a bit of the Caran d’Ache watercolour pencils, which are like… the best pencils on Earth… for a price! But the reason why I like watercolour pencils is they allow me to make a drawing and then go over with a brush to loosen up, make it more painterly.

Figure drawing of Antinous

Like my teacher used to say, my figure drawings are very “inventive”. Is this a good thing? I guess so, to some extend… observation is also important. But anatomy is all about the structure – and sometimes you don’t see it. From my point of view, the following equation applies: observation + anatomy = drawing. You know its there, there are bones and muscles under the skin. So you draw both what you know and what you see. I tend to put a lot of emphasis on the “what you know”, especially in the profile figure drawing above.

Male figure studyStudy of the muscles of the back

The reference for the back study was not a classical model, but actually a vintage photo of a bodybuilder. There is clear information about muscles in bodybuilder photos, so I highly recommend to find and use such reference.

I’m based in Dundee, there are watercolour pencils and other shiny things in our local iArtSupplies, check them out on Instagram. Previously, I did some digital portraits in an impressionist style so have a look.

© 2021 Atanas Laskov

Atanas Laskov 🏳️‍🌈