Life Drawing
Lesson I
Gesture -- The Foundation of Figurative Art

Refinements: Tilts and Angles

Perpendicular to the length of the body, we find angular or tilt relationships of the shoulder girdle, ribcage and pelvic girdle. These angles are essential in understanding the gesture. Notice that since the collar bones pivot independently at the sternum, the angles of the shoulder girdle can display unpredictable angles in relation the ribcage angle.

The ovals of the ribcage and pelvis can tilt and turn against eachother, and you can draw their axes (green & blue) to define this exact relationship.

Here the ribcage and pelvis axes (formerly the green & blue) are extracted from their ovals, and can be thought of as interior center-lines.

This is the exterior contour center line on the chest. As a body part turns from front facing, the exterior-contour-center-line and internal axis center-line (green & blue) visually separate from eachother. The pelvic angle is more frontal, so you can see a near overlap of the exterior abdominal center-line and the pelvic center axis (green & blue).



Gesture Intro Page Skeletal Foundation
Stick: The following are the key elements for organizing a "stick" figure:
The line of action Three ovals -- Head, Ribcage, Pelvis Pivot points Long bones Tilts and angles Contour center lines of front and back torso, and face
Projection and volume augmentations: While good as a foundation, the stick figure does not adequately express projection of form, volume, or relative position in space. There is more you can do to express these important factors in the posing model:
The shortcomings of the stick figure Showing projection Application of the projection concept to the stick figure Simple volume solutions Relative position in space
Loosen up: Using the stick figure foundation with the projection and volume augmentations, you can loosely organize an expressive gesture sketch:
Compare the "contour" method to the stick-start method Importance of the free-going mark The line of action and stick are construction lines Adding relationship and rhythm



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This page created February 14, 1998
1998 by Rebecca Alzofon. All rights reserved.