Anatomy Resources – Building Your Mental Library

Posted on 2012/02/16 at 15:44 by daarken 27 Comments

Anatomy is a very vast and complex subject, so how do you go about learning everything? Resources such as websites and books are a gerat way to begin learning about anatomy and building up your mental library. Building your mental library through observation and practice is key to being able to draw and paint successfully from your imagination. This process can take years, so don’t be discouraged if your imaginative work isn’t at the level you desire right away. In this video Daarken talks about some great anatomy books and sites that can help you learn anatomy. Be sure to check them out and link any sites that you found to be helpful.

Inspirational Artworks

Hyper Angle – Awesome Japanese photo reference books
George Bridgman – This is the newer, cheaper version of the book I talked about in the video.
Andrew Loomis
Human Anatomy for Artists
Burne Hogarth

27 Comments on "Anatomy Resources – Building Your Mental Library"

  1. Thorben · 2012/02/17 at 05:35 · Reply

    Hey, thanks for the video.
    The books you named might be really helpful.
    But my secret tip is to check out .
    (Mike, you can delete my comment if you don’t want me to post this) Notice that I don’t want to advertise for anything I just want to help anyone to learn how to draw the human figure.
    In the tutorials you will learn everything about the skeleton and about muscles. After the lessons you won’t have any trouble drawing the human figure. The only negative aspect about it is, that it’s kinda expensive.. but I guess in the end you will say that it was worth investigating.
    And again: I only want to help the art community!

  2. fornander · 2012/02/17 at 09:00 · Reply

    Great stuff Daarken! Here are some more resources that might be helpful.

  3. Trace007 · 2012/02/17 at 14:10 · Reply

    I have a book by Jack Hamm called “Drawing the Head and Figure.” If I recall, it wasn’t that bad.

  4. Nela · 2012/02/17 at 15:20 · Reply

    Jack Hamm’s book is good for a complete beginner, but it doesn’t go into detailed anatomy. Proportions are very well explained and also some miscellaneous stuff like drawing hair, folds, shoes etc.

    I have Stephen Rogers Peck’s “Anatomy for artists”, it’s compact, affordable, and awesome. Bones and muscles are rendered very well, and there are some simplified sketches that explain relations. Plenty of textual explanations as well, and an appendix with some nude photos.

  5. Artem · 2012/02/18 at 05:08 · Reply

    Michael Hampton book is very cool and my favorite about anatomy. Here is my favorite resources for anatomy study. (Very big colection photo with mans and womens in the different actions: combat, dancing, e.t.c.) (site where you are can draw on the speed humans, heads, hands, animals) (more high resolution photo-references mans, womens dressed or nude)

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/02/18 at 09:49 · Reply

      Thanks for the links!

  6. Aurore · 2012/02/18 at 12:53 · Reply

    A awesome resource i found the other day is the 3D model we can only view only skeleton and muscles, in each layers (deep and surface muscles). I think it’s pretty usefull ! =)

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/02/18 at 13:24 · Reply

      Oh man, that site is really creepy, but awesome! Thanks for the link!

  7. Artem · 2012/02/19 at 05:23 · Reply

    Remember other great site- high-resolution photo mans and womens, sketches.

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/02/19 at 09:19 · Reply

      Ah yes, I used to go to that site a lot back when I worked at Mythic. Thanks for reminding me!

  8. Ricardo Arganza · 2012/02/20 at 09:46 · Reply

    Thanks everyone for the great links!
    When i need a hard pose, sometimes i take a look on deviantart. There are tons of photos there. If you ask the owners and explain them it´s for a painting they usually have no trouble to let you use their artworks.

  9. Mižu · 2012/02/25 at 07:26 · Reply

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge. Much appreciated :)

  10. Grigor · 2012/02/29 at 02:15 · Reply

    Hmm, I dunno why people neglect it so often but the best artists anatomy book is the Godfrid Bames’ one. I am actually familiar with all those u’ve posted (well at least most of them)as well as some other anat. books and neither one can rival with Bames. They are not so well explained, they are not so complete and the drawings are worse when it comes simply to artistic aproach.

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/02/29 at 10:14 · Reply

      Thanks for the info. I’ve never heard or seen the Gottfried Bammes book you mentioned. I will have to check it out.

  11. Mikko Voipio · 2012/03/05 at 13:09 · Reply

    By far the best way to learn anatomy at home in my opinion are Glen Vilppu’s videos. They’re somewhat expensive though.

    Also here’s the best male anatomy reference gallery I’ve found so far.

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/03/05 at 14:19 · Reply

      It is always hard finding good reference of males, so thanks for the link!

  12. Ar-Vey · 2012/03/06 at 00:45 · Reply

    Hey Daarken, this website is truely amazing… Oh my god thks a lot for all of these video and links! So good.

    This book seems to be awesome too

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/03/06 at 10:50 · Reply

      Cool, thanks for the link!

  13. TamiresPP · 2012/06/26 at 20:52 · Reply

    Hey Daarken,
    I wonder how do you make anatomy studies for yourself. Do you paint from life, do you do schematic drawings…?
    Thanks! Awesome links you guys!

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/06/26 at 22:02 · Reply

      I used to draw from life when I was in school. Sometimes I draw from photos now, but I usually don’t have time to practice since I’m always working on my freelance work.

  14. James · 2012/07/10 at 21:16 · Reply

    The best reference tool that i’ve found that helped me immensely is the anatomy figures from ….here’s a link to their stuff:

    Great site, Mike! So many things to learn. Thanks for sharing your process.

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/07/11 at 00:45 · Reply

      Yup, great site! I have the female figure.

  15. Olooriel · 2012/08/21 at 05:37 · Reply

    Thanks for the helpful link, that’s a really great site! At the beginning of this video you mentioned that you intended to do a couple of tutorials on how to paint specific body parts, like arms and legs… do you still plan to do those? Because I’d really like to see that!

    • daarken
      daarken · 2012/08/21 at 11:38 · Reply

      I do, but right now I don’t have time to create new videos due to my schedule. Hopefully in the future I can. Thanks!

  16. Richard · 2012/10/11 at 20:58 · Reply

    Daarken, thank you. So much!

  17. George · 2012/11/03 at 11:45 · Reply

    Thanks for these helpful links. I’m currently using, which is really useful as they not only have loads of posed characters, but also allow you to turntable them.

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