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Full Version: Seeking some help to finish of a piece
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Hi, i've been away from this forum for quite a while (hadn't have really much time to draw), but haven't forgotten about the professionalism here. So i have this realistic drawing of one of my all time favorite anime characters Kaneki. But it seems like it's a bit off though, i believe it has something to do with the hair and the face.

Have found some tips on a different forum and have updated the picture
A quick few notes for ya:

1: Anatomy anatomy anatomy.
The fingers are not right, the shoulders appear too squared off, his whole torso seems bent in an odd way, the face is very flat.
Always use reference to help you when you don't have the knowledge to do something out of your imagination "correctly". The good thing about fan art is that you can search for Kaneki cosplay for very specific and relevant reference.

2, Gesture and emotion.
So the whole point about figures is that the gesture is meant to indicate the action. The action and expression will indicate the situation, emotion and what we are meant to feel about it. The figure is so stiff, and the three finger up deal (which I assume is a reference to the character) is very hard to read. What is he doing? What are we supposed to feel about it? What is HE supposed to be feeling?
At the moment it is an odd mix, that is emotionally flat and doesn't really make much sense, especially for a non fan of the show.
The following pics show an indication of character even though I have no idea what the guy is about. Still not clear, but some sort of emo S&M thing on a revenge tip? I did not get a hint of this from your piece

[Image: 41zRKpOO2%2BL.jpg]
[Image: tumblr_n8ovw4vZRK1ssl60oo1_500.jpg]

You need to focus on lighting and shadow in order to accurately portray form. The lighting is very ambient and it is hard to pick where it is coming from. I am guessing it is meant to be from above left of canvas, but the way you have used your shadow areas makes everything look very flat. The cape should be casting shadow on him given the light source. Pick a light source and then define all your form according to that light source. For practice I recommend drawing / painting primitive objects (cubes, spheres, cones, cylinders etc) in various lighting conditions to learn how to give objects a sense of volume.

The cape itself does not look or act like fabric. Once again you haven't used any reference, and it is obvious.

Sorry to be harsh, but being honest is better than sugar coating things. Most issues with paintings come down to one of a few things, mainly:
Poor fundamental drawing skills.
Not using reference when the knowledge isn't there.
No clear purpose or narrative to the piece.

Hope that helps!
Hi Amit Dutta,

First of all thanks for the honesty! It's just like the previous time and that's why i came back to this forum.

1. I'm thinking about buying a book about anatomy, because i'm not able to spot my own faults here. Do you have any suggestions?

2 The emotion was hard to place in this picture because the example i had had little to no emotion in it, but i think i can do a lot with the pictures you provided me with. as for background information about the anime you're pretty close. xD

3 You're right about the lightning coming from the upper left. but the "cape" isn't actually a cape but more of an extension from his body (some kind of magic-ish stuff i won't bore you guys with.) That's why it hasn't really a fabric on it, i tried to make it look a bit like organs, maybe i should make it a light source as well to make the magic-ish part clearer.

Thanks again, i'm gone work on the things you mentioned!
No worries man, here to help!


Well it's hard for me to make a suggestion for one book only because there are quite a few. The list below are ones I have personally used and have got some value from for human figures. You might want to go and have a look to flip through them and see if it is what you are after.

Andrew Loomis - Figure drawing for all it's worth,
Drawing Head and hands

Stephen Rogers Peck - Atlas of Human Anatomy for the Artist

George Bridgman - Complete guide to Drawing from life

Everyone raves about Bridgman's classic books on constructive anatomy. This is a compilation of them all. I never used them that much myself, but there is a lot of good in there from looking through.

Frederic Delavier - Strength Training Anatomy

This one is a bit different. It is actually aimed at body builders, not artists, but the detailed drawings of the muscle groups and how they attach to the skeleton are great. If you want specific musculature reference, it is great. All the figures are of very muscly men and women so it isn't good for a direct one-for-one use, but more an understanding of placement and movement based on the exercise movement so one gets a sense of how they appear under different motions.

My personal favourite for anatomy is Glenn Vilippu's lecture dvds. The problem is the full set is very expensive. I got lucky and got copies off a friend. They are actual classroom lectures and so sometimes very sleep inducing, but I really liked his approach for figure construction and he draws through his explanations which you don't get in books. He has books too, but I'm not sure how good those are.

Nothing beats just practicing a lot at life drawing, or Croquis Cafe (youtube) or using pose sites like pixelovely.

Ha ha. It is amazing what a picture can communicate when some thought goes into it.
I am coming to realise that the "why" of a piece is more important than how technically good it is.
It all definitely matters for sure, but if there is no emotional impact in the viewer, if there is no reason for the piece, it is ultimately forgettable. Many artists seem to swoon over immaculate technique and things looking pretty or perfectly implemented, but the lasting impact of a piece that stands the test of time will more be governed by the emotional content it arouses in viewers than how well drawn it is, in my opinion.

Ahh I see. In this case, find appropriate reference then do separate short studies to learn about the subject, then apply what you learned to your piece. This is the way most will suggest you build up an illustrative piece. It definitely has its merits.
Don't buy the "Complete Bridgman", it's an absolute mess, all the plates are put together without any logic behind it all, the bits of texts are disconnected and confusing and the plates themselves are of very poor quality in terms of reproduction. Whoever edited "Complete" butchered it. Get "Constructive Anatomy" instead.