Hey, it’s Ethan here and welcome to this video series on how to draw the human figure.
Now, if you’re a beginning artists whose watching this video, I’m betting that you probably struggles with a few things in figure drawing.
You probably have a very hard time keeping your figures in proportion, creating dynamic poses, and making your figures look realistic.
If any of those describes you, then you’re at the right place!
In this lesson series, we’re going address all those issues and show you a unique approach to learning figure drawing that will help you overcome many of these challenges.
After getting a TON of questions from subscribers and seeing so many people struggle in this area, I decided to set out to discover the root of the problem – more importantly – what we can do about it.
So I interviewed over a dozen figure drawing experts and professional artists and asked them, “What is the number one key to mastering figure drawing?”
Each had their own style and take on the question. But there seemed to be a recurring patten among all their answers.
They all seem to agree that the biggest mistake that a beginning figure drawing artist makes is to tackle the subject, without properly learning the fundamentals.
In other words, they rush to drawing the figure, without first developing certain key skills that are critical to success.
And it’s this unstructured approach that leads to many of the problems beginners experience.
To illustrate this better, let me tell you the story of my co-instructor Michael.
Now Michael is a very accomplished professional artist and teacher now.
But when he was first starting out, Michael was just an average person like you and me.
He knew he wanted to master figure drawing… and do it in the fastest time possible.
Eager to get started, he decided to skip learning some of the foundational skills (like proportion, perspective, gesture, and anatomy) and dive into drawing right away.
He chose reference photos from magazines and comic books and drew as much as he could.
He ran into problems here and there, but simple pushed through it with more practice. And sure enough, soon he started to see his drawing skills improve.
Michael was feeling very good about himself.
But then one day, when he decided to draw a figure from real life and from his own imagination, something very strange happened.
He suddenly found that all his well hone skills seemed to disappeared.
His drawing as a complete disaster! The proportions were way off. The figure look stiff and life-less. And there was absolutely no dimension to it. It just looked flat and cartoonish.
It was as if all his hours of practice didn’t even matter!
Frustrated, Michael tried again. And again. And again!
But after many failed attempts, he finally realized the truth.
That all the key fundamental that he had skipped over – the ones that he thought was unimportant – had finally came back to bite him.
It was like trying to build a house without first setting up the proper foundation. And so everything just went crumbling down.
What he needed was to go back and build a solid foundation.
And so he had to start all over again and develop all the skills that he had missed. Except this time, it was even harder that if he was a complete beginner… because he had to unlearn all the bad habits that he’d picked up.
It took him a lot of work, but in the end, it all paid off. Now his drawings are better than ever.
So the lesson you can draw from Michael’s story is that you can’t just wing it!
To master figure drawing, you have to take a structured approach to learning it. And there are certain key skills that you need learn in order to become successful.
Skills like understanding proportion, perspective, and basic human anatomy.
By skipping over the basics, Michael ended up hurting himself in the long run and making his journey much longer and harder than it has to be.
But if you start out by learning figure drawing the right way, you’ll find that it’s much easier than you think and you’ll see faster improvements.
So that’s exactly what we are going to do in this video series.
We’re going to walk you though what these key fundamental skills are and show you the right approach to learning figure drawing.
By the end of this series, you’ll good understanding of the basics of figure drawing and hopefully draw your first realistic figure.
So I hope that gave you a good overview of what we’re going to cover.
In tomorrow’s video, we’ll start diving into some actually drawing.
I’ll show you a super simple (but very effective) way to understand human proportion.
And also go through a cool drawing exercise that will help you embed that knowledge into your memory.
If you struggles with keeping your figures in proportion, then you’ll really love the next video.
Now if you’re already signed up for my newsletter, you can expect the next lesson in your email inbox tomorrow.
But if you haven’t signed up yet, be sure to do that now so you won’t miss out on future lessons. It’s completely free and only takes 30 seconds.
Just go to MyDrawingTutorials.com/Figure (or if you don’t feel like typing, just use the sign up form below)…
So that’s it for the first installment in this series. If you liked this video, please help me out and hit that “LIKE” button.
And please share it with your friends on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ using the social sharing buttons on this page!
Until tomorrow, this is Ethan for MyDrawingTutorials.com and thanks for watching.
Very useful and smart
very helpful.love to learn more
Hi I had paid for tutorials awhile ago and I wanted to access them today. It seems I would have to sign up again. Could you please email the video’s since I already paid for them. Thanks Sharon Waitsman
No problem. I just sent you an email with the access link. Thank you very much for your support!
Very informative. A nice reminder about how the fundamentals of figure drawing are important.
You’re very welcome. Yes, we can never out grow the fundamentals.
Thank you, Ethan for the free drawing tutorial!
The lesions r great. I just have to find them
hey.. this video doesn’t have any tutorial so how can i get rest of the videos?
Thank man for This beautiful subjects .. since long time I am searching some god stuff for learning and improve my human Drawing . and i am beginner in this field .
so waiting for next video .. Am soo much excited
look forward the next viedo
I am trying draw and specially figures but i am a beginner so i think your videos really helpful and its tempting because its free 🙂 so plz help me
Looking forward to next video.
Thank’s for the help.
I would like to join your online course
you are to be complimented on being so public minded as to offer free tuition
i am retired and trying to teach myself to draw
this came at just the right time
You talk too much not getting to the subjects directly. We all know the problems so do not waste time and get on with it . Bored member.
this video is wounderful
hoping more videos from you
I looking forward to seeing it
I’m a new artist, but I have never tried figure drawing, after watching your first lessen, I think I may
have the skills to learn figure drawing.
hi my name is dilano and am 16 years and live in the Caribbean sea in a island named Saint martin and later i whant to become a comic book Artist and i will like to ask you what you think i should be doing to be getting started
If you want to become a comic book artist, I think you are on the right track. Figure drawing is a very important aspect of comic book drawing so you definitely need to master that. Also, it would be very useful to learn some perspective drawing as it will help you draw interesting landscapes for the story line… as well as making your figure drawings seem more dynamic.
Thanks, look forward to video #2!
Thanks Ethan for his vocation of teaching. I totally agree, if you do not know the basics of drawing, construction will not be correct and failures, distortions …
an art is god gift. only thing we have to learn sistametic.then only it helps.
I am in no case a young and newbie person. I am 60 years old and very tender and fat. (LOL). I am trying my hand at all art mediums and are now stuck on painting. It seems I have to have some knowledge or at least try and draw some scapes, especially the light and dark areas. (According to the lady I have my painting classes with). I am going to follow your drawings, it might help clear up the mind. One thing though, can I save your writings and videos to my PC?
Unfortunately these videos are not downloadable. But they will always be here when you need them 🙂
I need help Ethan, I want to draw the female anatomy but your Figure Drawing Lessons 2/8 video covers only the male anatomy, will I be able to learn the female anatomy from you or is the entire series based only on the male’s anatomy?
This series is focus on the male anatomy. But I will try to create some tutorials on the female figures in the future.
Looking forward to the next lesson.
I am 61 years old and love to draw. I just couldn’t do it. I was about 10 when I started drawing stick figures. I ask my best friend to help me and teach me to draw. He told me ” You don’t have the talent, so find something else to do, drawing is not your thing.” After High School “life” took over and drawing was put out of me life, I though for good. I was a policeman and detective, and once again drawing came in to play. I had to learn to draw crime scenes for juries to understand what happened at the crime scene. Luckily I did most all my figure drawing with a circle with an x in it. In July of 2008 I became disabled and was unable to work. I wanted to draw now that I had the time. I was looking at tutorials on you tube about drawing. I came across Ethan. I was amazed to find that he really cared about “ME” learning to draw. He took each aspect of figure drawing, or portrait drawing and explained it to where “I” understood. I would play the tutorials over and over until I learned the technique he was teaching. I still need practice and more practice with figure drawing and portrait drawing, but now I know where to start, how to draw the figure, and when to shade and not shade. All I know to say is Thank You Ethan. (Where were you when I was a Detective?)
Wow, thank you very much, Steved. I glad you were able to get so much out of the lessons. And thank you for your service as a policeman and detective.
Absolute second day in art. Will these videos be too advanced to begin to learn anything about art,
Not even decided to use oils or acrylics. Do not eve know about color as I said second day
No, not at all. These lessons are very beginner friendly. Welcome to the site and I hope you enjoy your journey as an artist 🙂
Thanks for the first video I’m hoping this will work for me did 10 lessons at college and I didnot grasp it. Looking forward to trying them out.
Than you Ethan,
I want to paint Human Portrait but was always afraid to start. Watching your video gave me confident to start. I will keep in touch to let you know how I am going.
very helpful both to watch and read for future references. J
Hi , thanks for introducing me to this web site, Yes I ve been struggling with figure drawing for a while now n I think this the best e book tuition DVD I’ve found , hope it improves my figure drawing ? I ll let you know in the near future
Ethan, i have been looking, HARD, for the best tutorials on drawing. And though I have found some decent ones and my skills have tripled. None compare to your methodical, plainly spoken, concise instruction. I (my former teachers look away)! Did the homework! Well, im half way into lesson 4 cuz I usually don’t comment nor give out my email. But im a firm believer in doing good things and what you’ve put out there for us at no cost, but considerable time and effort to you is to me a very
GOOD thing and i cant thank you enough. THANK YOU
Thank you so much, Mikzbikz! I do put a lot of time and effort into these lessons, and hearing you say that make it all worth it. So happy you like the lessons 🙂 This will definitely motivate me to create more and make them even better.
hi ethan if you already have my email address do i still have to do the free figure drawing sign in – i dont use twitter face book ect only my email – watched video 2 loved it – didn’t realise that there was so much to remember – great tutorial – would love a cheat sheet
Good question. If you are already signed up for the newsletter, then you don’t have to sign up again. You’ll automatically get the next lesson in your email. I’m glad you like the second tutorial. I don’t have a cheat sheet for it per say, but I did post a lot of step-by-step drawings in the lesson that you can use for quick reference. You can check it out here: //mydrawingtutorials.com/drawing-human-proportions-with-stick-figures/
i have never done full body drawings before – so am excited to watch these tutorials and learn the basics –
Great! I’ve excited to show you there lessons 🙂
i have allways struggled with drawing the figure so am looking forward to the next stage on your drawing lesson
Great! I think you’ll really benefits from the next lesson. It’s on proportion drawing and it’s just uploaded. You can watch it here: //mydrawingtutorials.com/drawing-human-proportions-with-stick-figures/
well for the start it look grate,by the way is it possible to download these video lesson?
Sorry, these lessons are not downloadable because of bandwith limitations with my internet hosting provider. But they will stay on my youtube channel forever so you can just go there and watch them whenever you like. Here’s the link to the channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/MyDrawingTutorial