2 minute Figure Gesture Drawings

Art Prof Clara Lieu demonstrates 2 minute gesture drawings using stills from Eadweard Muybridge’s book The Human Figure in Action. Prof Lieu explains how to capture the most essential masses and forms of the human figure within 2 minutes. 

1 hour., 32 min. video

Video Walkthrough

  • People think they need extremely detailed, high resolution photos to do gesture drawings.
  • Muybridge’s photos provide just enough visual information to do 2-5 min. gesture drawings.
  • Muybridge’s photos capture natural, dynamic motions, many reference photos online look too posed.
  • Gesture drawing isn’t about creating a great drawing, it’s about training and sharpening your eye to draw.
  • An effective gesture drawing is about capturing the personality of the pose, accuracy isn’t the goal.
  • Draw the entire figure in a gesture drawing, don’t crop body parts!
  • Don’t expect you will draw everything “right” the first time.
  • Instead, approximate your drawing and then make tons of changes.
  • It’s easier to fix your drawing, rather than try to make it “perfect” the first time through. (no one can!)

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