drawing Drawing Tutorial

Tips for drawing hands

In this tutorial I'll include many tips about drawing hands I've picked up which are useful for getting better at drawing hands, including foreshortening, nails, and finger shapes.

Tutorial category: drawing  
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Step 1

Many people have mentioned how the hands I draw look good, and by good, meaning no anatomy mistakes, since those mistakes are so common when drawing any hands that are not in 'the default pose'. So, beginning with anatomy, this is the basic bone structure of the hand is represented by sticks and circles are joints. Notice there are *three* joints in each finger, not two.


Step 2

Now to flesh out the hand. Some people tend to make the hands out of straight lines, which makes hands look slightly fake. The fingers bulge out very slightly at the joints (you can even feel your own fingers for the bulges!)



Step 3

On to finger types and nails. Fingers on top, nails on the bottom. People say you can tell a lot about someone from their hands, such as their profession and gender. Long, slender fingers and short stubby ones give very different impressions about their owner. To emphasize the gender, use tapering fingers for females and square-ish fingers for males. As for nails, remember that the nail is made of three parts. The cuticle, the nail itself, and the slightly lighter part that's sticking out (if any) also remember that the nail is not flat. *very important* if the nail is drawn flat, it will seem like the finger is flat too. Generally, you can get away with no cuticle, though xD


Step 4

Moving on. The dreaded foreshortening. For those that don't know the term, it's just when an object is angled towards the viewer. In other words, it's pointing towards you. Example of foreshortening: [ LINK ]
A lot of people have trouble with this, myself included, but think about a cylinder viwed from different angles. It's not very hard to visualise that, is it? Think of that as fingers, and then fordhortening with hands doesn't seem so hard anymore!


Step 5

Furthermore, a useful tip is to remember the three areas of flesh on your palm. Areas one and three should definately be drawn in, since area two isn't very obvious when the hand is in this position. If you scrunch up your hand, these three areas will become visible. The two red stars indicate other areas you should be aware of. The joint in your wrist makes a little bump, and the big wrist vein should be indicated with little lines. An optional addition would be the wrinkles dividing the palm and the wrist, but that's not overly important.



Step 6

The most important thing with drawing hands? It is without a doubt, observation. You have references right in front of you! You've had them since you were born and you'll (probably) have them until you die. If you encounter a hard angle and these tips don't help, use that reference attached to your arm. If you think you have ugly hands, then use these tips to beautify them. It really isn't hard to draw hands, as long as you put in some effort.

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