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Drawing Lesson 34, Part 1 – How to Draw Female Body

How to Draw Female Body in Metal-Point

Video Lesson Description

In this video lesson, you will discover How to Draw Female Body in metal-point. This video also reveals the in-depth information on metalpoint drawing materials and metalpoint drawing techniques.

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How to Draw Female Body

As the subject for this artwork, the marble statue of a skilfully carved female figure is chosen. This sculpture is displayed in the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, UK. It is highly realistic yet stylized, with some influence of the Art Deco era during which it was created. The white marble surface is polished and the statue is lit from the above. The female figure is slightly bent forward and her head is turned to the side.

How to Draw Female Body – Preparatory sketch

The “How to Draw Female Body“artwork begins from a pencil sketch. This preliminary drawing would serve as a cartoon for transferring the figure outlines onto the toned paper. This sketch will be very helpful in making a very neat and precise drawing in metal-point. The preliminary sketch is disposable and can be rubbed with an eraser to correct any mistakes as much as required. The ground for metal-point is quite fragile and can be easily damaged; so transferring a drawing instead of making it on the metal-point ground is essential to keep coated paper clean.


How to Draw Female Body
The Drawing Academy lessons on How to Draw Female Body provide in-depth information on human body proportions and drawing approaches. Such drawing approaches include working from big masses to smaller details, drawing see-through wireframe of a human body, measuring shapes and proportions, measuring angles of lines, etc. These angles and shapes characterize model’s posture and have to be observed and portrayed with precision to make a realistic drawing of this sculpture.

Another good strategy to consider when considering how to draw female body, is to constantly compare all areas of the drawing to each other. For example, I am looking at the figure’s head and shoulders when drawing her legs, comparing sizes and proportions of those areas to each other.

Avoiding Mistakes in Figurative Drawing


How to Draw Female Body - Drawing Academy Video Lesson
When it comes to the question of “how to draw female body”, one of the common mistakes of an amateur artist when drawing a human body, is concentrating on one particular area at a time.

I have seen many students’ drawings where the upper part of the body is smaller or bigger than it should be compared to the lower part. This often happens when students start drawing a standing figure from the top and draw the head, trunk and arms. Then draw the legs, paying little attention to the upper part of the body. This results in a disproportionate figure.

Such mistakes can be avoided by looking at various parts of the human body while drawing one particular area. For example, when drawing legs, you can have a look at the head or arms and compare sizes and proportions of those areas to each other.

One of the junior mistakes in the human figure contour drawing is to oversimplify this outline.

The simplification can be good when intentionally done, for stylistic reasons, in design or illustration artworks. However, for realistic constructive drawing, a fine artist would benefit from the detailed contour that characterizes the shape of the body muscles that influence the figure’s outline.

How to Draw Female Body – Human Anatomy Knowledge

The knowledge of human anatomy is essential for that task. In most cases, observing the human figure is not enough to make a realistic drawing. Professional drawing skills come with the knowledge of human anatomy. In the Drawing Academy, there are numerous video lessons dedicated to this subject, such as: construction of skeleton and bones as well as main body muscles that are essential to correct perception of body planes and shapes.

Professional fine artists draw not only what they see, but also what they know. It doesn’t mean that a human figure must be drawn with a see-through skeleton and muscles; instead, keeping internal body structure in mind while drawing helps truthfully depict realistic looking body shapes.

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