Femur or humerus – continuous tone pencil

Femur illustration examples

Project goals

The goal of this project is for the students to produce a monochrome pencil drawing of an anterior view of an anatomically correct femur/humerus as well as supporting drawings and studies in both pencil and carbon dust. Through depicting the femur/humerus in continuous tone the students will apply the theories of light on form, which they learnt in their foundation course. Emphasis will be placed on direction observation of the subject matter, proper lighting and instructional impact. The project will provide the student with skills in pencil and carbon dust.

 

Project objectives

  • Learn to analyse good examples of femur/humerus illustrations from which to benchmark your own work. Emphasis on instructional impact and focus on rough and smooth portions of the bone and how they relate to muscle attachments.
  • Put into practice the principles of light on form that was taught on the foundation course.
  • Practice pencil techniques, and implement neatness and good presentation.
  • Learn the basics of carbon dust illustrations for bone studies, and develop common vocabulary relating to carbon dust and of the materials used.
  • Learn anatomical terminology, landmarks and muscle attachment sites that can be found on the femur/humerus.
  • Creating a monochrome pencil drawing of an anterior view of a femur/humerus.
  • Preparing pencil studies illustrations of proximal and distal ends of the femur/humerus, to properly understand their form.
  • Producing a series of pencil studies of the bone, relating the surface to surrounding bones and soft tissue structures to evidence your understanding of the structure of the femur/humerus and its interactions.
  • Producing half size carbon dust studies of the anterior and posterior views of the bone to progress drawing skills into other mediums.

Project Outcomes

  • An anatomically accurate illustration of a correctly orientated anterior view of a femur/humerus in pencil, which shows instructional impact.
  • A collection of pencil drawings relating to the femur/humerus to surrounding bones and soft tissue structures, evidencing understanding of its structure.
  • Carbon dust half size illustrations of the posterior and anterior views of the femur/humerus.
  • The ability to self assess own illustrations.
  • Mastered monochrome pencil illustration and carbon dust illustration.
  • Built upon skills in continuous tone which you learnt on the foundation course.

Marking criteria. The marking criteria indicated here is a guide and grades are allocated in conjunction with the assessment criteria laid out under ‘Assessment Information – In-course Assessment Criteria’.

Criteria Levels of achievement
Illustrations/graphics impact and clarity. Including skill in chosen medium (Final monochrome pencil drawing only and marked out of 10 points)

• Instructional impact of drawing
• Observation accuracy of structure and surface detail
• Skill and neatness of rendered illustration
• Effort given to the requirements of the project
• Understanding and control of art tools, materials
and techniques, singly and in combination
• Understanding of elements, such as colour, line,
texture, balance

Fluent ability

9-10 points

Confident ability

7-8 points

Competent ability

5- 6 points

Basic ability

3- 4 points

Limited ability

1-2 points

Anatomical accuracy and exploration
(Final monochrome pencil drawing only and marked out of 5 points)

• Anatomical accuracy
• Lifesize, correct viewpoint and orientation needed
for this illustration
• Understanding of the bone in wider context as demonstrated by studies and sketches

Excellent form and anatomical accuracy

5 points

Almost no errors in form and /or anatomical accuracy

4 points

A few errorrs in form and/or anatomical accuracy.

3 points

Some errors in form and / or anatomical accuracy.

2 points

Major errors in the form and anatomy

1 point

Presentation and attractiveness
(Includes all images/
sketchbooks etc. and marked out of 5 points)

• Presentation neatness
• Layout and labelling design and effort
• Spelling
• Use of art vocabulary when discussing artworks

Excellent

5 points

Extremely good

4 points

Very Good

3 points

Good

2 points

Basic

1 point

Observational and
exploratory quality of
the collection of femur/humerus illustrations.
(Includes all images/
sketchbooks etc. and marked out of 5 points)

• Observational skill
• Creation of final display
• Independent research and original concepts
• Understand stages of art-making
• Awareness and appreciation of the context and purpose of illustration

Fluent ability

5 points

Confident ability

4 points

Competent ability

3 points

Basic ability

2 points

Limited ability

1 point

Level achieved from total points:
This project is marked on the four categories listed above. Once points are assigned to each category they are added up and a grade is given depending on the total points.
Distinction (20 – 25 points) Credit (19 – 15 points) High Pass (10 – 14 points Pass (5 – 9 points) Pass with Amends/ Referred for re-submission (1 – 4 points)

Pencil drawing artwork A

The pencil drawing artwork A

  • Materials

    • Use good quality cartridge paper – recommend 250gms weight
    • Use sharp traditional pencils, having a good range available from 2H, H, B, 2B, 4B
    • Putty rubber
    • Callipers are useful for detailed measuring, but where possible learn to draw ‘by eye’ and hand measuring with your thumb/pencil

    The drawing

    • The femur pencil project is designed to follow on and compliment the drawing skills studied and developed during your Foundation Programme.
    • Work on your project/bone as a ‘whole’ and build up your shading as a ‘whole’ too, which will create a much more unified finish to your completed drawing.
    • Study around the subject, understanding its place within the body, its relation to neighboring bones, the muscles, the ligaments and capsules that attach to it.
    • Differentiate areas by technique and tonal shading i.e. differentiate from smooth articular surfaces to distinctive ‘rougher’ areas where muscles attach for example and note direction of attaching fibers and blood vessels/foramen.
    • Remember ‘reflective light’.
    • Take your time to observe.

    Lighting

    • Lighting of your pelvis is very important, begin and keep to the same lighting point throughout your artworks and portfolio whether ever possible e.g. lit from top left. You may choose to light from the top right if you are left-handed. Whichever you choose – be consistent.
    • If you are relying on daylight, then draw at the same time/place each day to avoid morning and evening shadows causing contradictions in your artwork.
    • If you are relying on false lighting then place light in a consistent position for each project.
    • Use daylight bulbs where possible.
    • If you are using a lamp, place your lamp at a reasonable distance from your bone, because if it is too close you will find it will create unnecessarily harsh shadows. We recommend a reasonable distance in order to give you a good overall light/shadow effect across the whole bone.
    • Perhaps purchase your own folding art lamp to bring with you or to use at home. For example the ‘Daylight Twist Portable lamp’ looks ideal or similar.

The carbon dust studies artwork B

Materials artwork B – Carbon dust

  • Bristol board paper, cold press watercolour paper (such as 90 – 120lb) or smooth surface illustration board or paper
  • Carbon dust
  • Brushes
  • Carbon sticks
  • Scalpel
  • Putty rubber
  • Lamp oil sticks

What to I need to bring to class?

  1. First step in initial seminars: Bring pencils, good quality cartridge paper, and carbon dust supplies. Once in class, locate an intact, non-pathological femur or humerus from the bone collection at the Gordon Museum and make initial sketches, research the anatomical landmarks, origin and attachment sites of muscles on the bone and obtain initial feedback from your supervisor. A short lesson on carbon dust drawings, femur/humerus anatomy and a review of good examples of monochrome pencil drawings to benchmark your work will be provided. A lesson on pencil drawing can be provided if students need.
    1. Homework which must be completed before the next seminar:
      1. Form: Pencil drawing of the proximal and distal ends of the femur/humerus drawn on a table top, next to a round object like an egg or ping-pong ball. Relate the surface of the egg to the head of the femur and humerus and define the textural differences between rough muscle attachment sites and smooth articulating surfaces.
      2. Exploration: Pencil studies of the bone, relating the femur/humerus surface to surrounding bones and soft tissue structures to evidence your understanding of the structure of the femur/humerus. For example draw the head of the femur in the acetabulum with ligament attachments, or the ligaments of the shoulder capsule around the head of the humerus.
      3. Medium development: Simple carbon dust illustrations of anterior and posterior views of the bone in half size, clearly showing the form of the bone.
      4. Coursework draft: Pencil drawing for final coursework piece (can be a work-in-progress). Anterior view of bone in correct anatomical orientation.
  2. Second step is the interim presentation: You present your finished homework pencil studies which would have helped you explore the form and context of the bone and a work-in-progress pencil drawing of its anterior view . The carbon dust illustrations which will prepare you for future projects, can also be presented as work-in-progress to ensure your drawings are anatomically correct. supervisor and peer review of the work-in-progress will provide formative and critical feedback to produce your final version.
    1. Homework which must be completed before the next seminar:
      1. If any of the homework received feedback from supervisors at seminar, incorporating feedback and add work to portfolio ready for next assessment. This work will not be marked independently at assessment, but will form part of the ‘observation and exploratory quality’ and ‘anatomical accuracy and exploration’ sections of the marking criteria.
      2. Finish coursework draft of the anterior view of the femur/humerus based on feedback at seminar. Present again at following seminar to final feedback.
  3. Final step is the final presentation: Before submitting to assessment you must have it checked by the supervisor either in seminar or on a designated tutoring day via email and telephone. In assessment your work will be marked according to the marking criteria of that project. You will receive a detailed feedback form after assessment.

What do I need to bring to assessment?

You must bring:

  • The final monochrome pencil drawing of the anterior view of a femur/humerus, mounted and labelled.
  • Homework artworks which include pencil and carbon dust drawings and studies.
  • Include a clear photograph within your portfolio of the real bone specimen/s you are working from.
  • Make sure all artwork is well presented, neat and labelled.

Details on all the Medical Artists' Education Trust projects can be found below