The Figure (Paperback)

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The Figure By Walt Reed Cover Image


This classic figure drawing book has been in circulation for more than 30 years and has helped generations of beginning artists learn to master the challenging art of figure drawing. Master illustrator Walt Reed shows you how to reduce complex figures into a variety of basic shapes that are easy to master, helping you to reach your goal of producing lifelike drawings.

Tested through years of classroom use, the principles stressed here bring clear insights into drawing the human form. You'll find a logical, step-by-step method for mastering the construction and proportions of all figure types.

First the basic forms are analyzed the proportions of the various parts and their relations to the total figure. You'll then learn how these parts are connected and how they move and find exercises in drawing the complete figure in any position, engaged in a variety of activities.

Also included are detailed studies of anatomy examining bone and muscle structure plus special instructions for drawing such intricate parts of the body as the head, hands and feet. You'll learn:

  • How relative body proportions change at different ages
  • How bones and muscles affect the surface of the figure
  • How to create many types of faces from the same model
  • How different lighting angles affect facial shadows
  • How to select the most descriptive pose
"Concentrate on this basic form figure until you can do anything you want with it. Draw it in as many positions as possible," Walt Reed says in his introduction. "Practice of this kind will help train your hand and your mind in the proportions, construction, and relationships of the individual forms so that you will never forget them."

About the Author

Walt Reed is an artist, author, illustrator and one of the world's top scholars on illustration art. He based The Figure on teaching methods developed by the faculty of the Famous Artists School where he taught for 15 years. He attended Pratt Institute and the New York Phoenix School of Design, beginning his art career as Art Director for CARE in New York. Reed has written several books, including the classic The Illustrator in America: 1900-1960s and The Western Art of Harold Von Schmidt, as well as numerous magazine articles. Reed founded the Illustration House in 1974, Americas foremost gallery devoted to the art and history of illustration (
Product Details
ISBN: 9780891340973
ISBN-10: 0891340971
Publisher: North Light Books
Publication Date: October 15th, 1984
Pages: 144
Language: English