Bone studies—Lessons from Robert Beverly Hale

Some comments from Robert Beverly Hale's "Drawing Lessons from the Great Masters" that I found especially important and am keeping in mind as I study the bones:
  • It must be understood at once that the form of the body is dictated by the bones…Essentially, the body is a machine, with the bones in compression and the muscle in tension.
  • …study [individual bones] until you can draw them by heart from any position. Then draw them together as a full skeleton.

My sketches of the clavicle being reduced to a basic shape.

  • As you study the bones, memorize the exact origin and insertion of the necessary muscles…Half the time, you are simply putting your pencil on the origin of the muscle and moving to the insertion, or vice versa.

My sketches of the clavicle being reduced to a basic shape.

  • Anatomy is something you cannot hold in your mind without constant drawing practice for the rest of your life.
  • In studying bones, it is best to think of them as simply as possible, at first, and to draw them that way in the beginning…In your mind, you must create a simple form to put on each end of the bone…Then you can devote the rest of your life to refining the shape [of that form]. 
My sketches of the scapula (its axillary margin view) being reduced to basic shapes.

  • Proportions reside in bones. If you wish to draw children, try to get some conception of how our bones vary in proportion, one to the other, from birth to adulthood.

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