Fashion Sketching Focal Point Design



1. Find an image in a magazine- A full figure shot with subject’s head to toe forward facing.

2. In order to create the croqui, we are going to start by dividing up the proportion of the body. When you are first starting out, a ruler is very helpful but as you continue to practice and get better, you will be able to train your eye to find the focal points of each important aspect of the figure as well as the garment.

3. Using a ruler, measure the subject’s body length and then divide into 9 sections. Now you with fine art drawing, you are automatically going to remember that the body’s proportion are compared to more like 7 or 7 1/2 heads. (The Real Colorwheel’s example)

In fashion, we want to accentuate the linear quality and gestural drawing style while still remaining true to the proportion of the body but the scale will be exaggerated a bit to view the ensemble better.

4. Match the scale marks on the photograph page to your blank page. See picture:



5. First begin by making a guesstimatation with free hand either start at the head or the feet. I recommend starting with the head because then you can better formulate the posture of the subject as well as getting the figure to look “grounded”.



6. Then begin the outline of the body. You have two choices:

A) you can start from the right of the head and from glancing to the photograph and back to your hand drawing to mimic the turns and curves that outline the body.
B) I usually begin on trying to make the “attitude” of the particular posture the model is in. By knowing the rule that one shoulder is always slanted ( even if slightly), they are not exactly symmetrical and this exudes which foot  the weight is distributed more.

Which one is the weight-bearing leg? Focus on that while positioning the shoulders.

Once you have that diagonal shoulder line drawn, you always know that the hip line is in opposition of the shoulder line



7. Begin filling in the blanks by comparing each section and complete it like a puzzle. “ Hip is in the beginning of 6th section and drops halfway down to section 5’s halfway point.”

8.Next challenge is positioning the legs and feet underneath the head and make sure that it looks like there’s a weight-bearing leg. In this case , that would be the model’s right hip jaunting up makes her adjust her contrapposto  ( more explanation from the Empty Easel.)


IMG_0007_2 IMG_0008_2

9. After that, focus on completing the pieces to the puzzle, where the shoes meet the thigh to the hip and the shoulders to the positioning of the arms/hands.


10. I usually save the face for the last because its like the icing on the cake- either it can be good or too sweet. Try not to overdo the eyes and the lips. I have found over the years : where I would originally position the eyes is where the eyebrows should go and the small eyes go underneath it with all the lines in between including our eyelids and the curve just under the eyebrow as well.



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