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In recent articles, we’ve been talking about the artistic term “contrapposto”, which refers to when a character’s shoulders and hips are on opposite angles, forming an S-curve in the body. This is a technique that has been around for centuries, and it is widely agreed that this is one of the most visually pleasing ways that the human body can be composed. That’s why it’s a really good idea for us to learn about this technique and use it in our work!
We’ve been through how contrapposto is used in sitting, standing and lying down positions, so now let’s take a look at some useful examples! Feel free to use these as references when practicing poses for your own work.
Drawing all different poses!
Here the shoulders and hips are slanted on extreme angles, so we get a pose that shows off the character’s curves in a beautiful way.
This is a slightly more subtle use of contrapposto, but you can see the hips and shoulders are on opposing angles. Turning the toes inwards makes the pose look more shy and cute.
Contrapposto can be used in action scenes like this too! Just be sure that the centre of gravity doesn’t connect with the ground at a point outside of the character’s feet, or else the character will look unsteady, as if they are about to fall over!
Here’s another example of how contrapposto can be used when a character is in movement.
Using large, expressive movements in the body in combination with contrapposto will make for an even more visually interesting pose.
Graceful, stretching poses like this one also go very well with contrapposto! It helps make the character’s body look more fluid and flexible.
That brings us to the end of this pose collection!
Remember to check out our previous articles for more details on how to create contrapposto poses.