Artistic Anatomy Lecture: Front Leg Muscles

This video explains the front muscles of the leg, discussing the specifics of the anatomical structure.

Muscles covered in this video include the Sartorius, the Tensor Fasciae Latae, the gluteus Medias, the Vastus Medialis, the Rectus Femoris, the Vastus Lateralis, and the Tibialis Anterior. Lecture by Art Prof Clara Lieu.

Video Walkthrough

  • Muscles are the “icing on the cake” when it comes to learning anatomy.
  • Prioritize what anatomical content is most important.
  • Knowing the bony landmarks is far more important than learning all of the muscles.
  • Muscles tend to be tougher to see than bony landmarks.
  • You can’t always draw athletic figures all the time!
  • Learning to draw a broad range of people is very important.
  • The thigh is made of a “muscle clique:” the Vastus Medialis, the Rectus Femoris, and the Vastus Lateralis.
  • The bottom of the Vastus Medialis is more visible than the other parts of the muscle “clique.”
  • Notice where there muscles attach to bony landmarks.
  • Bony landmarks will lead you right to the muscle!
  • On the front of the leg, the patella (knee cap) and the tibia (shin bone) are very important to giving the leg structure.
  • Learn more about the leg bones in this lecture.
  • The Sartorius is a thin, strap like muscle which begins at the ASIS (Anterior Superior Iliac Spine) and then wraps across the the thigh, ending at the inside of the thigh.
  • Several muscles “meet” at the ASIS: the Gluteus Medius, the Tensor Fasciae Latae, and the Sartorius.
  • The Sartorius is a very sculptural muscle, it wraps around the thigh.

Prof Lieu’s Tips

So much of anatomy is looking, noticing, and identifying things. Looking at people as you go about your day (that is, in a way that isn’t creepy, you have to be discreet!) is so incredibly helpful.

See if you can spot the gastrocnemius muscle on a leg the next time you go out. You can’t draw an anatomical feature if you don’t know where to look for it!


Muscles mentioned

  • Sartorius
  • Tensor Fasciae Latae
  • Gluteus Medius
  • Vastus Medialis
  • Rectus Femoris
  • Vastus Lateralis
  • Tibialis Anterior

Bones mentioned

  • Femur
  • Tibia
  • Fibula
  • Patella
  • Lateral Malleolus
  • Medial Malleolus
  • Anterior Superior Iliac Spine

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