We independently review everything we recommend. When you purchase through our links, we may earn a small commission. This doesn't affect our editorial independence.

Is Figure Drawing Important? Key Reasons & Benefits!

When learning to draw, you probably asked yourself: is figure drawing important? Can I just skip it and learn to draw what I like?

Well, let’s go over the details!

This timeless practice of capturing live models in dynamic poses is not only a cornerstone of art education, but also a vital skill for artists like yourself.

In this article, we’ll go into the significance of figure drawing and how it can revolutionize your artistic abilities.

From mastering essential techniques and portraying movement to honing your decision-making skills and improving your character design skills, figure drawing offers many advantages.

Why Is Figure Drawing Important

In general, figure drawing is important for developing essential artistic skills.

It’s more than just a practice; it’s a way for artists to truly understand the human form and the intricacies of anatomy.

figure drawing sketch

Life drawing, which involves drawing from a live model, allows artists to capture the essence of movement and fluidity in their artwork.

It provides a three-dimensional representation that doesn’t need to be super realistic!

Figure drawing isn’t just about creating art, but about continuous growth and exploration as an artist.

The Purpose of Figure Drawing

To fully grasp the significance of figure drawing, it’s essential to understand its purpose and how it contributes to your growth and development as an artist.

Figure drawing serves several important purposes:

  1. Learning Essential Skills: Figure drawing teaches you the fundamental techniques of art and helps you develop a keen eye for form, lines, and curves. It allows you to understand how the human body reacts to different characteristics, such as posture changes and gestures.
  2. Depicting Movement and Fluidity: Figure drawing provides insight into capturing movement and fluidity in your artwork. By studying the human body, you can learn to convey hidden movement and add depth to your pieces. Especially if you learn and master gesture drawing.
  3. Capturing Depth: Life drawing allows you to observe and capture the essence of a pose, adding depth and authenticity to your artwork. It provides a more three-dimensional representation compared to photographs, allowing you to add dynamism to your art!

Figure drawing isn’t just about honing your technical skills in drawing the human body but also about expressing your personal creativity!

It’s an important skill and a powerful artistic growth and innovation tool, even if you don’t want to be a figurative artist! You’ll learn a lot and be able to draw what’s in your mind.

Benefits Of Figure Drawing For Artists

There are many benefits to Figure Drawing other than just improving your human body drawings!

Figure drawing can enhance your skills in creating character designs (more on this later), allowing you to bring your imaginative creations to life.

cartoon character drawing and loving it, a reason why is figure drawing important, is because it makes artists feel good!

And let’s not forget the relaxing nature of figure drawing, providing a therapeutic escape and stress relief while honing your observation skills and understanding of construction in art.

Improve Drawing Human Structure And Proportions

Improving your ability to draw human structure and proportions is a key benefit of engaging in figure drawing as an artist.

By practicing life drawing, you can enhance your drawing skills and gain a deeper understanding of the human body and its anatomy.

Here are three ways figure drawing can help you improve your drawing of human structure and proportions:

  1. Observing and studying the human body allows you to learn essential techniques for capturing the various forms, curves, lines, and undulations. This knowledge can be applied to creating artwork beyond human subjects.
  2. Figure drawing helps you understand how the entire body reacts to different characteristics, such as posture changes and gestures. This understanding enables you to accurately depict the proportions and movements of the human body in your artwork.
  3. Engaging in figure drawing sessions, whether with a group or on your own, provides a collaborative learning environment. You can learn from other artists’ approaches and techniques, expanding your creative perspective and enhancing your design skills.

Incorporating figure drawing into your artistic practice won’t only improve your ability to draw the human body but also enhance your overall drawing skills and artistic expression.

Create Better Character Designs

Figure drawing will improve your character design skills.

Drawing the human figure allows you to develop a deep understanding of anatomy, proportions, and movement, which is essential for creating believable and dynamic characters.

Figure drawing is important for every visual artist, including character designers! Even if you want to do some traditional painting or fine art, many artists will keep practicing figure and gesture drawing to create better characters.

Character Art by Yuriy Mazurkin
Character Art by Yuriy Mazurkin

By sketching from live models or reference images, you can observe the intricacies of different poses and accurately depict them in your character designs.

Figure drawing also trains your eye to see details and nuances in the human form, enabling you to capture the unique characteristics that bring your characters to life.

Whether you’re designing superheroes, fantastical creatures, or everyday people, the skills acquired through figure drawing will make your character designs more unique and fleshed out!

It’s A Relaxing Exercise

This will depend on the artist, but in general, figure drawing offers artists a relaxing exercise that provides numerous benefits.

  • Figure drawing serves as a peaceful and meditative activity, allowing you to escape the stresses of everyday life and find a sense of calm and tranquility. This is particularly true when you’re super focused on capturing the model on paper or a digital canvas.
  • Figure drawing becomes a way to unwind, rejuvenate, and recharge your artistic energy, leaving you feeling refreshed and inspired for future projects.
  • Through this relaxing exercise, you can rediscover your passion for art. It can be very motivating to draw people when in a stress-free environment.

In fact, according to the Art Therapy Credentials Board(1), art can “…reduce anxiety and increase self-esteem.” Which is something most artists will be happy to receive!

Improve Observation Skills

By honing your ability to observe and capture the human form, figure drawing enhances your artistic skills and allows you to see the world with a keen eye.

Through figure drawing, you develop the power of observation, learning to carefully study the intricacies of the human body and translate them onto paper.

photo of a human ready to be drawn

This practice improves your ability to notice subtle details, such as the play of light and shadow on the curves of the figure, the delicate nuances of muscle structure, and the graceful lines that define each pose.

By honing your observation skills, you become more attentive to the world around you, noticing the beauty in everyday scenes and the unique characteristics of the people you encounter.

You Get Better At Construction In Art

Through regular practice of figure drawing, you’ll improve your ability to construct and depict forms in your artwork.

Figure drawing is essential for artists because it allows them to understand the structure and proportions of the human body, which is the basis for constructing any subject in art.

By repeatedly drawing the human figure, you develop a keen eye for capturing the curves, angles, and lines that make up different forms.

examples of different body construction in figure drawing

This knowledge can be applied to other subjects, such as animals or objects, as you become more skilled at analyzing and recreating their shapes. You’ll know how to draw not only clothed and nude models, but also get an edge on drawing different objects and shapes!

Additionally, figure drawing helps you gain a better understanding of how the body moves and interacts with space, allowing you to create artwork that conveys a sense of movement and dynamism.

By honing your construction skills through figure drawing, you’ll become a more proficient and versatile artist.

Related Questions

Let’s go over some related questions you might have about the importance of Figure Drawing!

Is Figure Drawing Important For Character Design?

Improving your figure drawing skills will greatly benefit your character design skills!

Figure drawing is crucial for character design because it allows you to understand the human form in all its intricacies.

By studying anatomy, proportions, and gestures through figure drawing, you can skillfully bring your characters to life on paper or screen.

You can then adapt the shapes and forms to your unique art style (more on this later).

Lupin The 3rd's art style has evolved over the years, with a very interesting development.

Character design requires a deep understanding of the human body and its movement, and figure drawing provides the foundation for this knowledge.

It helps you capture the essence and personality of your characters, ensuring that they’re believable and visually appealing.

Through figure drawing, you can develop the skills necessary to depict your characters in various poses, expressions, and actions!

What If I Don’t Want To Draw Realistic Figures?

If you don’t want to draw realistic figures, figure drawing still has value for you.

While figure drawing is often associated with capturing the human form in a realistic manner, it offers benefits beyond just creating lifelike representations.

Here are some reasons why figure drawing is important, even if you don’t want to draw realistic figures:

  1. Developing a sense of flow and capturing the essence of a pose: Figure drawing focuses on the fluidity and energy of the human body, allowing you to convey movement and dynamism in your artwork. This can be used even if you want to draw animals, different art styles, or objects in motion!
  2. Enhancing your understanding of anatomy and proportions: Even if you don’t want to draw realistic figures, having a basic understanding of human anatomy and proportions can greatly improve your ability to create imaginative and stylized characters.
  3. Expanding your creative perspective: Figure drawing exposes you to different artistic styles and approaches, providing inspiration and expanding your creative horizons.

Through learning figure drawing, you can later on try new art styles and draw the subjects of your dreams in your preferred art style! But having that great figure drawing base will help you out when you start drawing.


In conclusion, figure drawing is invaluable for artists of all levels.

It allows you to understand human structure, improve your artistic skills, and express yourself creatively.

Whether you aspire to create realistic figures or explore more abstract forms, figure drawing provides a solid foundation for any art style and subject!

Have fun and as always:

Keep on drawing!

And if you want to dive right into Figure Drawing, check out my Drawing Courses here!


Patricia Caldeira is the main writer here at Don Corgi. She's an art teacher with over 20.000 happy students across many platforms and courses!

Enjoy your stay and as always:
Keep on drawing!

Spread the love

Leave a Comment