Excerpt from Marcus Ranum's Stock Photography site
Can't draw the human figure? Feel a sense of inadequacy when you realize that you fail to understand what has to be the most essential skill in art? In understanding the lights and darks and all that value study stuff?!
Well, you needn't fret so much! You'd be surprised how a lot of talented and professional artists USE photos as reference when drawing people. A lot of budding comic and digital artists would often use themselves as models and pose on photos when drawing and painting. Believe it!! (Eww) Some would say using stock photos helps you figure out the perspective of the figure without wasting all your time with "fundamentals". (Whoever said that deserves a medal -ck)
I would assume classically-trained artists hate this sort of thing. They prefer artists today should know how to render a realistic a figure, and sometimes use real life models in art workshops. Some argue that part of the problem with using photos as reference in art is that it tends to look flat. Whether that is true or not sometimes depends on the artist I suppose...
Anyway, where was I? Ah, yes. Setting the debate aside, here's what I have to say for this post - Many thanks to ImagineFX, the pricey digital art magazine I buy on occasion, which led me to discoverd this rather odd photography site. It's run by Marcus Ranum, a photographer with... interesting tastes.
Rendering photos on canvas is only as good as the photo reference, and Ranum certainly doesn't disappoint! He's got really neat stuff here, stuff I feel would be perfect for fantasy and sci-fi artists looking for a particularly pose and can't quite nail em since they never bothered to take formal figure drawing classes. :)
You can see how light would affect certain fabrics and materials. Perfect if you suck at that sort of thing. You can see women doing strange sometimes tasteless acts in some of these pictures. Priceless, right?!
Ah, but never fear. There's some neat classical nudes, if all this weird stuff makes you think funny thoughts. These nudes are great, and if you can stand staring at the monitor while drawing, then good for you! I highly recommend you check out the site! (Link below)
Did I mention Ranum's site's got Cat Girls? If you ever fantasize of rendering realistic looking "Neko Gals", then this is your one and only chance.
Visit http://www.ranum.com/gallery/index.php for meow--more details. Damnit!