How to Learn the Muscles of the Body for Artists - Part 4 - Locating the Pelvis From the Side

And here we are again drawing the pelvis from yet another angle. But don't despair. All of this hard work will soon pay off when we start attaching the muscles to the pelvis. This is easily the worst bone to visualise so stick with it.

Drawing the pelvis from the side is a little bit tricky because there are not as many landmarks on the body to help us locate it. Let's start again with a framework.

  1. Draw a horizontal line just under the crease of the buttock.

2. Draw a vertical line from the previous line. It should almost be halfway along the original line, just a touch closer to the crotch.

3. Now draw a 45° line that stops just short of the top of the leg.

4. Draw a vertical line from the end of the diagonal line. This line is approximately as long as the diagonal line.

5. Draw another vertical line that is halfway between the original vertical and the back (see the small mark for where I am measuring to).

6. Draw a diagonal line that is at approximately 40°. This finishes at the second vertical line.

7. Draw another diagonal that approximately makes a right angle with the previous diagonal. This line ends just before the top of the buttock.

8. Draw a curved line as below. It starts going vertically downwards and finishes going horizontally.

9. Now we've got the framework, let's get started with the drawing. The top part of the pelvis pretty much follows our lines but just cuts off the corners.

10. This is the start of the tricky stuff. Draw this shape at the front. It looks like a fancy bracket } or - if you look at the negative space - it looks like a stylised face with a pointy nose.

11. The next line follows our framework and then goes into an s-curve that finishes on our second vertical, level with the bottom of the face/bracket.

12. This is another tricky part. Draw this curve that cuts through the second vertical.

13. Draw a short line at 45°.

14. Finish off the outline of the pelvis with an s-curve. Now just some finishing touches...

15. Draw an ellipse that fits nicely into this area.

16. Draw another ellipse in the first one. It should touch the bottom of the first ellipse.

17. Add in this shape for the top of the femur and erase any unwanted lines.

18. Finally add in the tailbone. It comes down to the same level as the bottom of the face/bracket.

19. And let's see how we did:

Not too bad. This drawing is an approximation but it will perfectly sufficient for finding the origin points of muscles.

If you would like to go the whole hog with the pelvis, and you've got access to sculpting materials or ZBrush, then have a go at sculpting the pelvis. The more you familiarise yourself with this strange shape, the better.

Here's one I sculpted in ZBrush and I learnt a lot from the process. It was well worth my time.

I think we've got over quite a big hump in our learning now. So next week let's look at the female pelvis and see the differences. See you next week!


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