Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Friday (now Tuesday!) Tip

Well, who knew making a line drawing would take so long? I may paint and sculpt a lot, but I'm a total newbie to the world of drawing. Here at long last is the Friday Tip, and it's another frequently requested one - hair patterns! Today we'll cover the horse's side, and move on to other angles in upcoming Friday Tips. The picture above is clickable for a large version. The full size file is available here (be sure to download the image so you can open it at its full size).

It is a good idea to paint hair whorls, cowlicks and other changes of direction first when dealing with detailed hair patterns. This prevents the large sweeping portions of hair from encroaching on the hair direction change spaces and causing a cramped hair pattern. The highlighted areas below are the spots to work on first, before "filling in" the rest of the hairs.

  • The downward direction of the hair over the large upward flowing flank whorl, which causes the hair to come together and poke out in a little arch over the hip
  • The small whorl at the base of the flank
  • The oft-forgotten whorl on the underside of the rear barrel
  • The direction change of hair and the gentle blend between the side and bottom hairs at the front of the barrel
  • The smallish whorl towards the front of the chest which causes the hair to change direction slightly over the arm
  • The elongated whorl under the throat
  • The direction change behind the ear
  • The way the hair radiates out from the whorl on the forehead, and
  • The direction change along the crest, where the hair sweeps up rather than down near the root of the mane.

Whorls can occasionally be found all over the body as well. Although Chinook (our hairy model) does not have any whorls on his crest, that is another common area to find irregularities. These are the main points, but all horses have some differences in hair direction and whorl placement, so do not feel locked into any hair growth chart. They are great reference tools, but do go out and look for all the possibilities horses have to offer!