Quick Anatomy Tips

Quick Anatomy Tips

Pokémon Essentials Version

I just want to start out by mentioning that these tips aren't just specific to spriting, but I'm focusing on that becasue I know that's the style most people are using for their games! If you're looking for some drawing tip though, these will work for that too!

Tip Number One is to never be afraid of looking at refrences, so I've tried to include some images.​

  • Small children: Round heads and faces with bigger facial features, small hands, limbs and fingers are a little shorter and chubbier. The more you emphasize these things, the younger your character will look.
  • Do the opposite to age characters more: Longer face, little more space between facial features, ect.
  • The space between eyes is the same as the width of the eye. Put 3 eyes in a row touching if that helps you get the spacing perfect. This isn't something to mess with too much or it throws the whole face off.
  • Eyes are about in the middle of the face (height wise of course). Place them first and it'll be easier to place the other features.
  • Ears? The top aligns with the height of the eyes.
  • How long are arms? When resting at the sides, the hands should be below the hips but above the knees. If raised straight over the head, the elbows will be right about at the top of the head.
  • Elbows and knees are in the middle of their limbs. You can use this to measure and figure out the correct angle if you're doing a complex pose and feeling stuck.
  • A hand with the fingers splayed is about the same size as the face in both width and height.
At the very base of your creature, pretend that it is made of circles. Make a little guide if you need to, so that no part of the outline will concave into the body. (I see this most often with the skull, people place the ear too far in)

A tail is literally a spine that just keeps going. So keep the line that forms the back going and you'll get the placement just right.
Typical cat/dog back legs have very long feet- the little paw they stand on is their tip toes, and their ankle is up in the air.
Animals typically have 4 toes on each foot, but commonly sprites will simplify that to 3 toes. (but may have a small "thumb" higher up on the leg; you probably won't need to draw this unless it's an important feature of your design)
Hooves are not paws, they should end pretty flatly on the ground and not have any bumps or toes.

Now if you'll allow me a tangent, here's something that allways bothered me:
Bird toes don't all face forward; think of like a claw machines grip and that's a bird's foot. 3 toes in front and one in the back seems to be more typical, but you can do 2 and 2. Webbed feet like a duck's don't allways need a back toe because they aren't gabbing things.
Frog feet can be pretty unique so don't just draw paws. Frogs can have webbed feet or the recognizable have long toes with chubby ends.

As allways, please let me know if overlooked anything or can improve this tutorial in any way! Hope this helps!
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I love this! Thank you so much for sharing this "tutorial"(?
Whatever, this thing will be really useful