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All hand references are from Line-Of-Action. I'm not linking this directly because it includes nude models.

Big text this time because this is going to be a long one. As always, I apologize for my English. It's not my first language so I'm not great at it, and I'm always open to clarify anything. Also please remember that I have had zero formal art training, so everything I'm saying is completely from my own experience as a self-taught artist.

LonelyAstronauts wrote:any tips on getting better at anatomy and poses? Mine always feel flat and idk why

I'm a huge nerd for everything about anatomy, especially how to use it in art, so I'm going to answer this question in chunks. Typically, artists will find themselves struggling with one part of this more than others, so I hope the format makes it easier.

Before I really start, I just want to say: Realism isn't what makes art good. I kinda focus on realistic poses here only because I like to learn the rules before I break them, but I personally love cute styles more than I'll ever love realism. Don't let any frustration with these elements get in the way of your style.

    Before you begin drawing full pieces, I highly recommend doing studies of your subject. There are several ways that you can do this, and they don't have to be long. Five-minute warmup exercises are a fine way to get comfortable with anatomy. I personally like to do light doodles of various lines of action, with only suggestions of the head and limbs of my subject. I won't elaborate too much on this, since it ties in with the rest of these suggestions, but make sure you warm yourself up before drawing a full image. I promise it will improve your art quality drastically.

    If you're a nerd like me and enjoy delving deeper into what's under our skin, do so. Bodies are kind of like one large piece of tight fabric pulled over a bunch of soft, squishy machines, and I love learning about it and applying it to my art. By getting a basic understanding of musculoskeletal structures and how they vary between species, you can better visualize your art in dimensional, dynamic spaces. I'll go more in-depth in this throughout this post, but I fully support studying science in order to build yourself as an artist.

    Always use references while drawing, and learn how to use them. There are a lot of different ways to reference things as far as anatomy goes, so I'll cover a few things that I use personally.

      The easiest way to get good references is by looking up whatever you want. By understanding the different shapes and the different mass that you can see in photos of living creatures, you can better understand their anatomy and how they can be posed. My best tips here are:
        - Don't reference other art. It can be inaccurate or stylized without you noticing, and is, therefore, an unreliable source if you're looking to create a more realistic anatomy in your own art.
        - Don't use images that you aren't allowed to. This includes copyrighted images. No, Google Images is not full of free stuff. Use a free image search engine like the ones listed below.
        - For humans, try to get a good grasp of different races. To be blunt, I hate seeing artists get what I call "white face syndrome". Learn to draw features that aren't button noses and thin lips. This will be a huge help when you design characters too, and it'll make your art more accurate when you draw anyone else's characters.
      Here are some great online resources for understanding anatomy, poses, and angles through images:

      Line-Of-Action - Not linked because it has an option for nude models. If you're comfortable with having that option, feel free to Google it at your own will. This tool includes options for humans, animals, hands/feet, and expressions. This also allows you to time images, so it's great for doing quick studies.
      Unsplash - Search engine for royalty free images.
      Pixabay - Search engine for royalty free images.
      SketchDaily References - Not linked because it has an option for nude models. This tool includes options for figures, animals, body parts, and more.
      QuickPoses - Not linked because it has an option for nude models. Includes a ton of pose resources and great tips.
      Animal Photo Art References Search - I love this one. It's primarily for animal heads, and it allows you to search for images of specific animals at the angle of your choice.

      Pose models are another great tool when you're looking to make your poses more dynamic. You can use physical versions, such as this guy, or use digital versions. I personally use DesignDoll because it's extremely customizable and allows me to have a stick-figure type reference. It's also free. I mainly use it because it's free. Tools like DesignDoll are extremely helpful if you struggle with perspective, too, because they have adjustable cameras. As I explain below, a lot of flat poses are the fault of poor perspective points, so I recommend this if you think that could be your problem.

      This is what I do a lot of! I love skeletons because they give me more room for stylizing the character. I own two articulated human skeletons who I often reference for anatomy purposes, and I collect taxidermy, which often gives me a really personal look into how animals can function. Of course, you don't have to shell out upwards of $3000 in order to get a good art reference. But you might want to. I'll cover both.

        Plenty of skeletons can be bought online or cleaned in your own backyard. When purchasing skeletons (for US citizens), I recommend Skulls Unlimited, The Bone Room, and Bone Clones (these are fake). Skulls Unlimited is the biggest bone seller I know of, and they're great to work with. Most of their smaller skulls are pretty cheap, so if you want a good cat or dog reference, they're great. If you're looking specifically for human bones, private sellers like JonsBones are really good too. Owning human remains is legal in every US state expect for Louisiana, Georgia, and Tennessee. I think you can buy bones within the state in the latter two, but do your research. It's a lot of money to spend just to be arrested. Also, if you're getting your authentic art references of endangered or threatened species, make sure you keep the paperwork or else you can have it confiscated and you can be fined. PM me if you have any bone-related questions. Please.

        If you're not interested in selling your soul and half your life's savings for your art just yet, you can reference skeletons that aren't yours. Visit natural history museums in your area and photograph their displays at various angles. If there aren't any around you, try emailing other museums or collections. Plenty of them will be happy to provide photos upon request. (I don't personally provide photos of my skeletons due to the cultures they once belonged to.)

    The line of action is the backbone of a dynamic pose- literally. This term refers to the line that flows through the figure in a piece of art. It usually flows from the base of the skull down through the legs. It can be used it nearly every style of art and gives a really good sense of unity. That brings me to my second point here:

    When you're only drawing figures, your pose is the essential element of your composition. Even with a flat pose, you can make good art by having a good composition to it. There are a lot of things that I could cover here, but the basic point is that you should have a pose that fills your canvas properly and is appealing to look at.

    Stiff poses can also be caused by too strict of an adherence to anatomy and proportions. When the character is being influenced by an outward force or dramatic movement, you can make the viewer understand the force by exaggerating the pose heavily. This is an element used strongly in cartoons. Cartoons usually try to stay pretty simple, so the heavily stretched and contorted shapes of the characters can give audiences a good grasp of what's happening to them.

    Super secret art hack here, but you don't have to draw characters from the direct front. Try to think of your subject in three-dimensional space to do this. Again, DesignDoll and similar tools are good for this because they show you exactly how a certain pose will look in your selected perspective.

It's now half past two in the morning and I'm very tired, but I might add more in the morning. Let me know if there's anything you want to see covered here!

Chickpea @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 7:13 pm

Owning human remains is legal in every US state expect for Louisiana, Georgia, and Tennessee. I think you can buy bones within the state in the latter two, but do your research. It's a lot of money to spend just to be arrested


These look really cool!! And so many art tips too! Thanks

LonelyAstronauts @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 7:19 pm

holy crap, this is so helpful!!! Thank you so much for answering, I'll look into some of the stuff you listed!!!

i have this list of things i am supposed to draw. "Trobia (Henry Asencio)" His art O:. (P.S. He draws lots scantly dressed women, so...)

sodafarts @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 8:43 pm

this is unreal, looks practically like a painting! <3

Bright from Challenge Accepted!, based on this drawing by greace
by StaleElephantBones @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 5:28 pm [Reply]

Another child to add to the pile <3

Vianonica @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 5:32 pm

pile of dead bodies.

creativity-flows @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:19 pm

they look like an easter egg and i love them

AF38 - snipsnops (once again) from Human/Humanoid
by kageyenova @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 4:20 pm [Reply]


snipsnops @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 4:25 pm

    kage keeps slaying me with gorgeous art idk how to handle it
    for now i will just weep

Dragonheart48 @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 4:36 pm

aw the lil dragon

Joy_and_Raymond @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 4:49 pm

I'm happy now, like the little dragon baby (:

    rare keldine
    [ r ] scales placed elsewhere
    [ r ] flightless wings
    [ uc ] ear edit
    [ uc ] fur edit
    [ uc ] fewer scales
    [ uc ] black scales
    [ c ] hair
    [ c ] shorter fur
    [ c ] shorter tail
    [ c ] colored sclera
    [ nr ] eyebrow shape edit

    transfer of this depressed care bear
    one rare edit item was used for the wing and another was used for the hair - approved by me!
    one more transfer to go aha

rem sleep @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 4:18 pm

      my baby boy < 3
      thanks again rey!!

toxic candy apple from Adopts 2: Pets, based on this drawing by aangelcafe
by punkopup @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 3:32 pm [Reply]

it took me like 4 attempts to design this kid and I'm still not very happy with the outcome but what can u do
also talk about not using oekaki for one (1) week and becoming TRASH instantly

name suggestions?? i'll be using a mythical tier myo for this one!

[c] horn length
[c] ear edit
[c] tooth edit
[c] candy edit
[uc] sclera
[uc] hair
[r] extra eyes
[r] goop (the black substance is a poison that she can secrete from her paws, teeth- like snake venom, and candy apple at will)
[m] magic (poison)
[m] glow
[m] extra wings

brb gotta edit some things and put the fake sign on until they get approved !!!

Ηades @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 3:33 pm

WOW this baby is amazing!

aangelcafe @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 4:01 pm

    looks all good, approved ! spooky time baybey

and i look up to the sky from Animals/Creatures
by SurgeFire @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:34 pm [Reply]

and i know you're still alive
but I wonder where you are, i call your name into the dark

i wake up in the morning, oh, and i don't know where i've been
all alone on a mountainside and huddled in the wind

and it feels like i've been away for an era, but nothing has changed at all
and it feels like i've been with you but, oh, what did you you do and where have you gone?

hes not actually permanently dead in this scene just thinking abt some plot stuff
the angle just kinda came naturally in the vision i had for this shrugs

clip ♡ @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:50 pm

    the angle is just *chefs kiss*
    also lord Huron... yes good

Alpha Snowdust @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 3:18 pm

yeees yarrowleaf...

that expression is purrfect... no pun intended...okay well maybe.

VisualFeather @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 3:56 pm

the perspective tho

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AF37 - DAT from Animals/Creatures
by kageyenova @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:23 pm [Reply]


niravi. @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:24 pm


kageyenova @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:27 pm

niravi. wrote:THE BG STAYS YES


Error: 707 not found @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:48 pm

pFFt- beautiful bg

3 replies not shown, show all

27 layers and over 8 hours later~
I came up with the idea for Fox Wolves back in 2016. The story and characters have changed so much since then, it' almost unrecognizable. The only real similarity between my initial ideas and what I have scripted so far are the main characters, Showers (left) and Lunar, who used to simply be called "The Alpha," (middle.) The story (and characters) have changed so much in these past four years, it's crazy! Ace (right) came into existence as an extra in Lunar's backstory, but quickly became a key character in the story.

I don't have the book written yet; right now it's just notes and ideas unwritten, but I felt it was time to make a proper cover. So, by the time I actually have the book written, it's likely I won't be using this as my cover. I'll probably end up drawing a new, cleaner version, with whatever my new art style will be in the future. BuT FOr nOw I CAn USe ThIS FOr A GOoD CoNcEPt ArT/MoTiVAtIoN wHIlE I wrITe.

For now, though, I'm really happy with this :D Please let me know if this grabs your attention! I need feedback for my book to be a success in the future! <3

lilpupin @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:26 pm

This is stunning! I love how the use of lighting really makes it look like it's night time, and showers necklace makes me want one of my own,, I especially love Lunar's eyes, they really get my attention, they're beautiful!

wack @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:58 pm

I really think you could publish this as a book! :0 You seem to have treated your kiddos with so much love over those years!! ^^

Twilight.Princess @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 3:28 pm

If you ever make into an actual book, I'd read the heck out of it! I relate to having stories that have pretty much changed completely, I think it's great for aspiring writers and even just artists, since it shows improvement and growth in creativity! Once again your art style amazes me.

2 replies not shown, show all

custom for roheil from Adopts 2: Pets, based on this drawing by SkyGold
by SkyGold @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:03 pm [Reply]

here you go!

edits: body spikes, crystal growth, tail edit, fur edit, horns, ear edit, teeth edit, tongue edit, leg edit, eye shape edit, longer body, armor plates, claws

roheil @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:56 pm

    he's so perfect 🥺‼ thank you so much skygold!!

770 from Animals/Creatures
by gothamitez @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:02 pm [Reply]

    did a little studying and drawed some teeth

    unrelated but whoever keeps favoriting my first oekaki drawing and art from seven years ago im going to kiss you on the mouth. hope you enjoy yearly outbreaks

BiscuitTheDog @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:04 pm

beautiful teeth oh my god

gothamitez @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:21 pm

BiscuitTheDog wrote:beautiful teeth oh my god

thank you! :3

Bluepup429 @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 3:04 pm

big ol chompers! munch munch

(ok but these studies really do be slappin tho!!!)

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i wanna see all clowns. furry clowns, weird clowns, spider clowns, human clowns, doll clowns
please show me ur clown ocs i love them a lot!! i would also love it if u told me about them. who are they. whats their story. do they prefer jelly or jam. i wanna knowww
i might even doodle a few if they catch my interest, if that sweetens the pot ;>

retro @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:03 pm

got these two customs from lacebug !! i guess the first one is more kidcore themed but i still love em both so much. 2nd dude has bug tattoos which are super cool

clowns @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:05 pm

the one on the right is crybaby! he is apart of a traveling circus and has a tendency to cry and is very sensitive

the one to the left is giggles. He is apart of the same circus and is crybaby's only friend.

this beppi, he is a sad and shy rat, but like to make everyone feel very good about themselves.

SarcasticFallenAngel @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:07 pm

The only clown kids I have for the moment👀 are my twins Weiss & Wynn

Their story is a work in progress rn since I got my grubby little claws on them just recently. But what I do know for certain is that Weiss prefers Jelly, and Wynn likes Jam uwu

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Attack 44: North from Animals/Creatures
by SurgeFire @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 1:06 pm [Reply]

im sorry im bad at humans/humanoids so ill just draw all ur non-that kids ig ahjakjasja
weird lighting hm

revenge on -ajax-/aj.

fuyunofabukiaj @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 1:07 pm

omg all these have me hyped to see whos next XD i have 2 attacks to revenge and i feel you with the humans XD you can see my freak shows of the 2 i did (i feel so bad for the ppl i subjected to it cri)

dream owes me an APOLOGY i was treating an infection on my leg and watching dt content to calm down and when i found out he was 6'3 i simped so hard for a brief second that i fell over and smashed my head into the sink . dream will PAY for making me simp

TheUnknown @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 12:57 pm

i will not admit
to laughing at that
(I hope youre okay though)

creativity-flows @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 12:59 pm

i knew he was tall but 6' 3" ?? hgfdfgnm,mhgf I-
(jokes aside hope youre ok ouch ^^)

snails @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 1:00 pm

its ok to laugh @theunknown fcjdeckj
physically i have recovered, this was a few days ago, but emotionally im still a little broken. i dont have any dignity left
@creativity-flows GOD RIGHT??? I HEARD 6'2 SOMEWHERE AND I WAS LIKE .. EYES EMOJI??? but :flushed: 6'3 .. "6'4 if i stretch" he says

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AF36 - Orangemint04 from Human/Humanoid
by kageyenova @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 12:19 pm [Reply]

    uhh i spaced out for a very long time pls dont look at that timer hwhwfakdfls

BiscuitTheDog @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 12:20 pm


but srsly this is so cool wwaaaaAA

Zombies from Landscape/Scenery
by .wafflecat. @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 11:56 am [Reply]

┬┴┬┴┤( ͡° ͜ʖ├┬┴┬┴

o(-< @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 11:57 am

omg you could be a game artist

BiscuitTheDog @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 11:58 am

if "Only Beans" was a real store i would go to it

IndigoBlues @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 12:01 pm

This looks amazing omg
It kinda reminds me of night in the woods :0

AF35 - romanie from Human/Humanoid
by kageyenova @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:54 am [Reply]

    one day i shall master drawing the womem

Dragonheart48 @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:55 am

you have mastered drawing women

Wyrmie @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 10:36 am

One day I shall master not feeling super gay for fictional characters

erag from Animals/Creatures
by whim @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:27 am [Reply]

    almost thereeee

AF34 - arthurin from Human/Humanoid
by kageyenova @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 8:21 am [Reply]


niravi. @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 8:25 am

Hot man

~patches~ @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 4:09 pm

as a bi person it's really hard to look at all of your pictures and not fall in love with them

AF33 - Galaxy-Lexie from Human/Humanoid
by kageyenova @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 7:36 am [Reply]

    slime bo y

o(-< @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 8:06 am

you get these out at an alarming amount of time kage 😲

Dappervolk from Human/Humanoid
by .wafflecat. @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 7:28 am [Reply]

doodle of Trout and I c:

BiscuitTheDog @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 7:31 am

this is so adorable aaaaaaa

emburs @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 8:14 am

I friggen luv

AF32 - BlizzardtheWizard from Human/Humanoid
by kageyenova @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:59 am [Reply]

    i love her sm but where is her self co n t r o l

Dat @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 8:00 am


StaleElephantBones @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:01 am

I love this design!

lookout from Animals/Creatures
by prisms. @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:51 am [Reply]

Not a vent,, more of an experiment

+ I like drawing this way,, its more fun!!

PinkAngel @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:53 am

Very beautiful looking.

prisms. @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:55 am

PinkAngel wrote:Very beautiful looking.

Thank you so much!!

weary @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 7:04 am

oooohh i adore the sketchy look to it! it's almost like chalk,,, super cool style !

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jhg from Animals/Creatures
by whim @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:26 am [Reply]


Attack 43: Jack from Animals/Creatures
by SurgeFire @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 5:23 am [Reply]

awahwga what a baby
revenge on elyhria!

Dragongirlboz @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 8:44 am

So cute!

elyhria @ Fri Jul 10, 2020 8:56 am

    my BABY she looks so precious omg
    and her little plush<3


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