The Human Figure

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The human figure is a picture of the person’s entire body. Often, this means from the top of the head to the bottom of the feet, but not always. In drawing the figure, you learn a lot about how your body is put together and how your body moves.


All you’ll need for this is a sheet of paper, a pencil and an eraser. Follow the steps, rememberring that you can pause if it goes too fast and rewind if you need to see something again. Remember to draw lightly with the pencil -- do not press hard when you draw -- so that you can erase mistakes and the guidelines. Okay? Got what you need? Start the video.

Drawing the figure in profile is drawing the figure as seen from the side. This is different from drawing the figure from the front. Though the body parts are all the same, they seem different in shape and position when the figure turns to the side.

We use simple shapes to put all the parts of the figure together, but our bodies are not really a grouping of ovals and rectangles. We'd look like wooden puppets that way, or like our arms and legs were made of popsicle sticks. To make the human figure look more natural, you need to shape all those body parts the way they actually look, with the muscles.