The Art of TaniDaReal

Anatomy and posing websites

"Human Anatomy for Artist"

This gallery offers many high resolution reference photos of the human body. You have to register / buy a subscription to get access to the photos though (for prices see their website).

"Female Anatomy for Artist"

Same like "Human Anatomy for Artist", but only with pictures of the female body.

Prices for each subscription vary.

There are also more special websites for:

. References for Comic Artists
. Environment Textures
. Human & Animal Photo References
. Environment Photo References


Posemaniacs is a great (free) site for learning or improving your anatomy drawing skills. It provides a gallery of male and female figures - made of muscles - in various poses. The more, the website offers some nice tools. Also available as iPhone / iPad app.

S.H.Figuarts figurines

If you rather would like to pose yourself than looking at photos, these poseable "Body-kun/Body-chan" figurines by S.H.Figuarts are very much recommended. There is a female and a male model with various accessories and replaceable hands in different poses, coming in different colors. There is a huge variety of other figurines available from S.H.Figuarts.

Some more info and photos can be found here: drawing tips


"Aaron Blaise - Creature art teacher"

Drawing and animation tutorials about animals, fantasy creatures and humans, "how to" lessons and resources (like brush and texture sets) by the Disney animation and wildlife artist Aaron Blaise, one of my role-models. You can either buy the lessons separately or get a full subscription to get access to everything.

One example for the lessons is the "How to draw Wolves, Coyotes and Foxes" course, including nearly 20 videos and 18 hours of content covering.

"Art Show"

Art Lessons, Books, Tutorials, Techniques and Resources for Artists. The website offers a link collection about Painting, Drawing, Photo/Digital, Sculpture, etc.

Programs and tools

"Scultpris" (freeware)

Sculptris is an impressive yet easy to use 3D sculpting software (by Pixologic), which allows an artist to focus on creating 3D artwork (even without 3D knowledge). Nice for playing and getting a feeling for 3-dimensional characters.

I don't really have much experience with 3D. I was always interested in learning more about it, but I don't find the time. However, there is a nice artistic program (freeware) named "Sculptris", by Pixologic. Sculptris offers you the possibility to model with virtual clay, coming with a fun, intuitive and user-friendly interface (it does not require 3D or animation knowledge). It's a nice tool to play with, to get a feeling for a 3-dimensional character, to design a character, or to find a good perspective of a character/model. If you're working properly, you can also use the files for printing on a 3D-printer.

Below you find some of my first attempts.

One of my first tries, making a Schnolf head. I put some more details in it (teeth, tongue), however it's still done pretty quick and dirty. Parts like the teeth, tongue, eyeballs, etc. are made of seperate sphere (which allows you to move and seperatly color it later too).
A horse - also known as the spaghetti hair monster. The mane is just done quick and dirty, hair still gives me quite a hard time.

However, this is a good example for different perspectives. This can be handy if you want to draw a 2-dimensional picture of that scene.
"Jiao Chan"

We needed a character design for Jiao Chan, the evil white tigress of the Eurofurence Pawpet Show, so I made a quick model with Sculptris. I later painted it, you can see the result below.

It was just a quick model, however it helped a lot getting a feeling for the character personality.
"Wan Yun"

And another character model for Wan Yun, the brown tigress (daughter of Jiao Chan). Also here - just a quick model, but it helped a lot getting a feeling for the character personality (young, friendly, attractive).
The (very) roughly colored version of Jiao Chan's model. Painted in Sculptris (the painting tool is included, you can switch to it after modelling).

Now it makes sense again to have seperate spheres (like eyeballs, nose, teeth, etc.), because you can select and deselect them, and so paint them seperatly without painting the other parts around it.

The whiskers were added in Photoshop afterwards.
And the roughly colored head of Wan Yun. The eye colors were not the final ones in that design, we used different ones for the puppets.

Same here, whiskers were added in Photoshop later.
My first try on a dragon - Modelled and roughly painted (including the skin structure) in Sculptris, finalized in Photoshop (background, more colors, shadows).

"Google SketchUp"

Think in 3D, draw in 3D. SketchUp is 3D modeling software that's easy to learn and incredibly fun to use for creating all kind of models. I sometimes use it for constructing a room, scenery, booth or to get the right perspective.

Google SketchUp is one of the programs that I find a useful help for constructing a picture. You can build all kind of things with it - rooms, a (exhibition) booth, furniture, products, even whole buildings. It is pretty easy to use, and there is also a free version of it (SketchUp Free and SketchUp Pro).

I have used SketchUp for creating concepts for a scene (like a room). As you can freely move/rotate/zoom the viewing point, it's great for finding a nice perspective of your scene.
Some examples:

In 2010 I got a quite complicated commission, so I first created a concept of the room, inventory and characters in Google SketchUp. This was also nice because I could offer the commissioner several viewing points and he could choose the one he liked best. The character constructions were just quick and dirty (as it was too much work).
For my "Friday Night" picture, I also used SketchUp for constructing the bar: shelves, table, picture on the wall, etc.
The people in there were templates by SketchUp (to get the correct sizes of foreground and background characters), in this case I drew my characters later without constructing them first.
Just an example of a scenery I created with SketchUp for a possible picture idea.

At some point I wanted to build a better model again for such scenes.
Another random idea created with SketchUp for a possible picture of a hot tub.

Creating sceneries like that in SketchUp does help me a lot to get the perspective right and to learn more about it.

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