HEY WANNA LEARN TO DRAW HANDS?! LEARN TO DRAW THE FUCKING PHALANGES RIGHT GODDANGIT!!
This is a little sequel to my older post about the thumb: Small Miniguide about the thumb!
One thing I many times see artist do, is to not really consider the phalanges and knuckles/joints on the fingers.
You will see these kinds of hands on for example….
badly traced bases. Novice artists tend to not pay attention to those small subtle details that can make a hand go from “good” to “wtf”.
PINKY-FINGER ALWAYS POINTS INWARDS THE PALM!!
PINKY-FINGER LIKES TO CUDDLE WITH RING-FINGER!!
(and uh… yeah it’s not 100% accurate in the illustration above, PLEASE DONT COPY THAT LITTLE FLAW IT SHOULD BEND A BIT MORE INWARDS. But it looks at least better than the first example.
Yeah I know I’m such a professional….. )
Keep this in mind everytime you draw closed hands, fists and other poses where the fingers are not stretched out.
So, since the pinky points a bit inwards, there’s a little bit of foreshortening on the phalanges. And this is one of those small subtle details some people don’t notice.
Now, once you’ve learned that you have 3 phalanges and not 2. There’s also another important mistake ppl do with fingers:
The top phalange (aka fingertip) are sometimes drawn shorter than it is, making the middle phalange appear too long.
REMEMBER: You don’t bend only your fingertips when holding stuff and such. In fact, bending the fingertips 90 degrees with the rest of the phalanges straight is very hard and is not a natural way to move the fingers. (try it yourself, most of you wont be able to do it. But some can do it, as a party-trick.)
The bottom phalange is slightly longer than the middle phalange, sometimes they appear as having the same length. But always make sure to not make them twice as long as the top phalange. Think of their lengths as a pyramid; base is large while top is narrow.
And as a final note, I’ll talk a little bit about the fingernails.
The nails never cover the whole top phalange, it cover about half of it but rarely any longer. Nails can be smaller as well, it depends on what finger it is. And of course, there’s always exceptions.
Now go draw correct phalanges!