Monday, May 6, 2013

Body Parts

Great name for a post, by the way.

Let's study our pal Huck for a minute.  Here's the barely legible model sheet:
Let's focus on the drawing at top row, second from left.  Here's a very quick and very rough sketch of everything but Huck's head (it's not necessary for this exercise) or his tail:
A little sloppy but you get my point.
To draw Huck we need to understand a few things about his "construction," so to speak.  First there is what I call the "body bean":
This is Huck's basic shape from his neck - hah! what neck?!! - down to the bottom of his torso... sorta like a bean.  Or a squash.
Now we need to connect different parts to this body bean.  The leading leg - in our picture, the left leg - has a distinct shape.  Here it is superimposed over the body bean:
There's a nice curve to it.  It's a very aerodynamic shape.  In relation to the torso - the bean - the legs are short.  Look at Huck on the model sheet; he's basically all torso and head with very short legs, large feet, surprisingly graceful arms that conclude in clumsy looking hands.

Then there's the matter of Hanna-Barbera style arms.  Note the curvature:
If you closed the ends it wouldn't be unlike an aircraft wing.  The front of the arm, or the leading edge, is always straight.  The back of the arm contains the curve which - as in this case - often intersects and completes the back edge of the torso.  Check out all your favorite HB funny characters from the early 60s... they all share these basic body shapes, leading leg shapes, and arm shapes.

The feet are also very similar.  They are very large in relation to the short legs and to the body bean.  They are soft looking, cuddly even, and completely non-threatening.  The only exceptions I can think of offhand are Yogi Bear and Wally Gator.  They both have claws, or nails, emanating from relatively small feet.  It wouldn't make sense to put cuddly feet on an alligator but a bear?  C'mon, haven't you ever heard of a teddy bear?? 
The end of the foot isn't round like a filled sock, it tapers.  There is the suggestion of a solid, shaped foot.  Toes are indicated by short lines.  The bottom of the foot is formed by a shallow curve. 

Practice drawing these feet.  I find them to be harder to draw than they might first appear.

Next sesh we concentrate on hands.  Till then!

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