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Force: Dynamic Life Drawing for Animators

4.27  ·  Rating details ·  1,680 ratings  ·  18 reviews
Force: Dynamic Life Drawing for AnimatorsCapture the force in your life drawing subjects with this practical guide to dynamic drawing techniques - packed with superb, powerfully drawn examples that show you how to: * Bring your work to life with rhythmic drawing techniques * Create appealing and dynamic poses in your drawings* Experience the figure's energy in three ...more
Paperback, 228 pages
Published August 1st 2006 by Focal Press
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 ·  1,680 ratings  ·  18 reviews

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Nov 15, 2009 rated it it was amazing

(More pictures at

Here's a very useful book not just for animators, but for anyone who do character drawings. It's called Force: Dynamic Life Drawing for Animators, authored by Michael D. Mattesi.

First of all, this is a book for intermediate and advanced artists. Foundational knowledge of anatomy is required to fully appreciate and follow along with the lessons.

This book is about creating realistic poses for life drawing. Examples show how forces inside the body and outside
Feb 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Oh my gosh, this book. It really was a game-changer for my drawing. Academic figure drawing is very stiff. It took a book about animation to bring out the natural beauty and flow of the human figure. Animation has a tendency to be poo-poo'd as being a lesser art. I disagree - animators have the difficult job of making a complex machine like the human body visually interesting without the luxury of detail. There are none better qualified than they to point out how to portray motion in the figure. ...more
Truly enjoyed this one.

I've had figure drawing lessons, mostly as a prerequisite to enter the school of fine arts I graduated from but also as a student there. I'd given up drawing for some years now, in favor of other arts, and recently started getting into the habit of daily sketching again. This book was immensely helpful. I felt it saved me bucket-loads of time and helped me find my form quicker and more efficiently than i would have had I gone at it by myself.

It goes through the basics of
Jun 15, 2019 rated it liked it
Kind of a basic book. Used it in my college figure drawing class for animation. I loved the expressive art, but it does VERY LITTLE to teach you about real anatomy. It's really a book for developed artists to learn how to take their already great core fundamentals of anatomy and skew them for animation and exaggerated/expressive illustration. I do NOT recommend beginner artists to get this book if they want a serious book that will teach them proportional anatomy/ realistic anatomy. AMAZING book ...more
Dec 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: practical-books, art
This is one of the best drawing books I've ever come across. If you read 'The natural way to draw' by Kimon Nicolaides and liked it, this is the next step. It teaches you how to see the underlying force of model and use it to build a solid lifelike figure.
I'd been trying to learn anatomy and to work from references in order to draw realistic figures from memory, but my work was too stiff. This book is for anyone who has the ability to draw from observation and wishes to take it further.
Helsean K.
Nov 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I cannot begin to describe what a magnificent effect this book had on my drawing! Every artist MUST give it a try! Especially if you are suffering from statue-like lifelessness and stiffness in your drawings.
Jul 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
10th anniversary edition
Hanieh Salehi
Sep 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: useful-art-stuff
a very good start in figure drawing. first 3 chapters were most useful. I didn't go through the rest carefully. Once you get the concept of force, then you can use it in drawing everything.
Dec 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Just the book I was looking for! I wanted an instructional-type book that didn't start off with blind-contour drawing and lead into "using a grid." This is not an art book for someone who wants to learn to draw; this is a book for someone who wants to learn to draw better. Coming from an animation background, Mattesi pushes some ideas I really like that focus on making the drawing come alive. His approach is less "draw what you see," and more "understand what you see and give it an opinion." I ...more
Jan 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: animation
eddig a legjobb/leghasznosabb rajzolós könyv, amit találtam, bár inkább haladóknak szól, akik nagyon tudják az anatómiát, és már gyakorlottak a life-drawing-ban. persze kezdők is tudnak belőle hasznosítani 1-2 dolgot, ha meg valaki olyannal akar foglalkozni, amihez kicsit is kell tudni rajzolni, akkor ez kötelező könyv.
Void lon iXaarii
Mar 19, 2014 rated it liked it
very cool drawings and probably great way to think for some people but i just can't seem to wrap my mind about the multiple uses and meanings of the used word "force"/can't turn it into something my brain can use as I just get confused when it sometimes means a force like in physics/gravity, other times directionality and other times energy and "rhythm" type stuff.
Feb 22, 2009 rated it liked it
Took a short 4-class teaser from the author. Thought it was interesting but I prefer to draw from gesture/silhouette and found this a little idealistic at times.
May 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
The text can be vague and rambling, but it's still a worthwhile read. Works best if at least somewhat familiar with anatomy.
Greg Tatum
Nov 13, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: art-books
Great ideas on figure drawing. I think it was worth it just for his advocacy of china marker on newsprint which is amazing.
Excellent book
Jul 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
changed my life... Seriously this book opened my eyes to push my drawings and see things I didn't before while drawing. The Force has had a HUGE influence on me!
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