Proportion problems

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Proportion problems

Postby Chef Troy on Tue Jun 25, 2002 9:39 am

I just started a new comic, Scandal Sheet, and I'd love for people to check it out and give me a critique.

One specific issue I'm having problems with is proportions among body parts. I have a HECK of a time keeping characters' heads from turning out too big, arms or legs too long/short, etc. I don't have any background in figure drawing, so I'm just eyeballing it - and coming up short (oh, if I sweat and curse and redraw things ten times I can get close, but I'd like it to be easier).

Does anyone have any tips and tricks for keeping my characters from looking deformed?
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Postby Chascraw4d on Tue Jun 25, 2002 9:04 pm

The most important trick is to rough sketch the entire figure first (I use stick figures with bubbles for the joints, head and torso). Get everything placed before you go in and draw the details. It's a lot easier to redraw your roughs ten times over than it is to redraw a finished drawing.

It's also a good idea to do reference drawings of all of your characters. Set up the standard proportions for each character ... how big are the eyes, how large is the head compared to the body, etc. That allows you to work out the details of how a character should look outside of the constraints of the comic itself.
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Postby Nick Sacco on Wed Jun 26, 2002 8:56 am

I have a big problem with proportions, and not just head to body, but smaller details. Size and distance of eyes, nose, mouth, chin, hair, arms, whatever.

I promote drawing templates of characters and then tracing.
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Postby Kelen on Fri Jun 28, 2002 11:42 am

Don't be afraid to use references either. New artists seem to have this misconception that using references is bad, but it's not.

I don't mean tracing, but instead find a pose in a magazine you like and attempt to draw the pose for your character. Having a reference will let you know how big to make the head, how long to make the arms, etc.

The best artists in history have used references and so can we! Hell, I use action figures sometimes. c.c; They are nice because I don't have to spend money on some over priced human poser thingie, and it does pretty much everything I'd want it to.
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Postby Nick Sacco on Fri Jun 28, 2002 12:00 pm

Kelen wrote:Don't be afraid to use references either. New artists seem to have this misconception that using references is bad, but it's not.

I don't mean tracing, but instead find a pose in a magazine you like and attempt to draw the pose for your character. Having a reference will let you know how big to make the head, how long to make the arms, etc.

The best artists in history have used references and so can we! Hell, I use action figures sometimes. c.c; They are nice because I don't have to spend money on some over priced human poser thingie, and it does pretty much everything I'd want it to.


I agree, references are good.

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Copy

Postby J-Buckleyline on Fri Jun 28, 2002 1:30 pm

If your good at copying from a distance,you can freeze a sence on a viedo and copy that using you character.

Tip:A hand should not be any bigger than a face. :wink:
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well...

Postby BunELovecraft on Sun Jul 14, 2002 6:51 pm

There are a coupla schools of thought on the porportion thing, but I think it all depends on the style you're working in.

On the average: the average person should be 8 heads tall, the markers for each head would be chin, midchest, groin, midthigh, knee, midcalf, and base of foot.

A hand is the size of a face when the fingers are spread while feet can be one head long and 2/3 across...

Crazying listing that.

I personally draw most of my people, more or less, 6 heads tall since I go in manga style. Try drawing out your stick figure with the ball joints when roughing it out and never underestimate the power of refs.

Some books to look into:
How to Draw Manga.com
How to Draw Manga from Antarctic Press (Fred Perry, the creator of Gold Digger, is the american manga god! His porportion tips are great!)
Anything by Christopher Hart though I like his How to Draw Cutting Edge Comics the best. Good luck and happy drawing
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Good Resource

Postby LaterJ on Sun Jul 14, 2002 11:18 pm

In high school my entire artistic experienced shifted when I read and studied this one excellent book: "How to Draw Comics the Marvel Way" by Stan Lee and John Buscema.
This book goes over all the basics of comic drawing; from perspective to proportion to technique and style. It changed my life. After that I learned alot from studying Joe Madureira (before he got too manga-like, it corrupted his style), and J Scott Campbell (Danger Girl, lean towards the earlier ish's before pressure set in). They are comic art gods.
But as for "Marvel Way", a must read for beginers.
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Postby Laxmastro on Mon Jul 15, 2002 1:52 am

You may not want it, but the best tip I can give is not to force anything.
It may take a while, but you will eventually get a handle on getting your vision on paper. You can read my comic and see that it took me nearly a year to get into the swing of things.
There is always something to be said for good old practice. :D
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Postby J-Buckleyline on Mon Jul 15, 2002 9:48 am

:) Ouch,practice. Yep,can't beat that advice.
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Whee

Postby CorruptDictatorNumber2 on Tue Jul 16, 2002 9:37 pm

"I got my hands on a prom dress catalog; it's a goldmine."
TOTALLY!! I stole two of them from my best friend. They really help a lot with arms and hips. Also, if you're into zany costumes or weird fashion or whatever... well, then, they're wonderful (for obvious reasons). I remember looking through one and there was a picture of a girl turned around to show her back, and the entire torso of the dress was shirred. It was...so beautiful... *sniff*... LOL

Danger Girl is awesome!! All the chicks have perfect bodies, but I can deal with that. There's one page in the first book (I think it's the first one... that's the one where Sydney and Natalia and everybody are introduced) where there are a bunch o' pictures of the girls getting dressed and gearing up. The shots are from the most unusual angles. I almost cried when I saw it because it was so good! So DEFINITELY check that out if you're looking for proportions changing with weird angles.

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Postby Reinder on Wed Jul 17, 2002 12:04 am

One of the best draughtsman I know of, Jan Boschaert, uses 'Gymnast Barbie' for reference when live models aren't available. Barbie's exaggerrated, but if she's good enough for him, she should be good enough for most of us. Dunno if there's a usable version of Ken though:)

Other than that: photo reference and life drawing classes usually help you get it right.
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Postby J-Buckleyline on Wed Jul 17, 2002 7:56 am

I'm still wondering how people can have size problems. It comes natural for me.
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Postby Halflight on Wed Jul 17, 2002 4:48 pm

proportion... the only thing i know of is measure it out before you do the detail, according to the size of the head. I didn't notice anything horribly glaring reading it, though the sihouette pics seemed less proportionate than the fully drawn ones...

hee Hee! cool comic, btw. the art is simple and a little wiggly, but its engaging and funny. ^_^
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Postby Whigh on Wed Jul 17, 2002 5:30 pm

Proportion, the bane of all artists. Well I can say that predrawing always helps. Map out your character beforehand on a piece of scrap, and keep at it until you get what you want. Then, it's quite easy to copy it to another sheet for your comic.

Overall, I've picked one body part to focus on, then used that as my basis for all other proportions. This anchor can be anything, for me it's usually the face/head.

Also, people have said this before, and because it's so true, I'll say it again. References work miracles. Find a similar type piece of work, then more or less copy to another peice of paper, focusing on your problem areas.

I'm sure this has all pretty much been said before, but I couldn't help but toss my two cents into the pot ;P
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Postby J-Buckleyline on Wed Jul 17, 2002 7:15 pm

Halflight? What comic are you talking about? Legend of Four is not mine. I just like it.
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Postby Halflight on Wed Jul 17, 2002 7:19 pm

i was talking about the comic that this post is about-- the guy that was asking for advice.
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Postby J-Buckleyline on Wed Jul 17, 2002 7:25 pm

:cry: Damn,now you made me feel stupid. 8) No more jumping to conclusions.
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Postby Halflight on Wed Jul 17, 2002 7:26 pm

i *was* wondering, tho, whether that comic in your sig was yours... (i checked it out because your post sounded so arrogant, i wanted to see if you lived up to it. if it was joking, sorry. a winking smiley, a j/k, or a link to whatever comic you do would have made the tone clearer.) i couldn't figure out whether you were somebody with a plethora of unrelated nicknames or one person plugging somebody else's stuff.

which is a nice gesture btw.
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Postby J-Buckleyline on Thu Jul 18, 2002 7:32 am

I like to share fame across other comics I like.
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