Comic Art Critique: Figure Drawing 

Add Energy, Personality and Attitude to Female Poses

In this video critique we’ll be reviewing the female figures drawn up by Arden Belfry, for his Superheroines Assignment.

If you’re interesting in taking my Comic Book Character Creator: Superheroines Course yourself, click this link to find out more: https://www.howtodrawcomics.net/superheroines

To draw a compelling character you’ve got to give your figures an energetic pose that conveys their personality and attitude. It’s through the way we hold ourselves that we’re able to express who we are, sometimes unintentionally through our unconscious sub communications.

We can’t help but to physically hold ourselves in congruence with how we’re feeling and what we’re thinking. There’s so much you can tell about a person without them ever uttering a word, purely through their non-verbal communication. The way they move their body, their facial expressions.

Since comics, along with most other forms of art are a visual medium, your ability to convey the emotional aspects of your character and their personality becomes more important than ever; because it enables us to engage with, and understand them on a much deeper level, giving your characters greater impact on the page.

This is especially true when it comes to implementing the elegant gestures seen in the poses of female comic book characters. Not only that, but they’re exaggerated in this stylized art form to emphasize the movement of their body.

One of the best tactics to introduce heightened movement into your dynamic figure drawings is to tilt the head, shoulders and pelvis of the character in different directions. This increases the interest and personality within your figures by introducing contrast and a more realistic representation of how the body actually moves.

Another way to give your poses additional movement and liveliness is to incorporate a twisting motion within the torso, between the rib cage and pelvis as the two rotate in opposite directions.

This is a common composition for these primary, anatomical masses, since the twisting motion is used to push the body forward with powerful momentum. That’s why the malleable cylinder of muscle connecting the two is not only astonishingly strong, but also extremely flexible.

When the human body is in motion, there’s not one part of it that remains idle. It’s a machine of muscle and bone that uses every component to power itself. Some movements are obvious, others are subtle, depending on the pose. But no matter how it’s positioned, the entire figure is effected, and so there should be no parts that a left still.

Failing to incorporate some level of movement into every part of your female figures as you pose them often leads to a stiff, lifeless looking pose that simply doesn’t appear natural.

The best thing you can do for your characters is to push and exaggerate their pose a little bit more than you normally would. Usually we hold back, but in this instance, we want to do the opposite. We want to amplify the motion of the figure to create an energetic pose that has impact. This is what effective figure drawing is all about!

Keep on creating, and keep on practicing!
-Clayton

 

Software Used: Manga Studio

 

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