Sunday, October 30, 2011

Anatomy of the Arm

Anatomy of the Arm

Studying anatomy can be daunting – there is a lot to learn. It helps to group anatomical information into easily understood ideas that students can use to help see the big picture.

Anatomy is like a puzzle, once you place all the pieces you can see the big picture. Most everyone who attacks a jigsaw puzzle starts by sorting the pieces out. The straight edged pieces (the border) are usually sorted first then large color separations are made, the sky is separated from architecture and landscape… These segregations make it easier and faster to successfully place the puzzle pieces.

One way we break anatomy down at the Academy of Realist Art, Boston is to learn muscle actions. This makes sense of where muscles are located on the bones and helps the artist to understand how to better describe a model’s gesture.

The image here shows one of the ways students learn the insertions and origins of muscles. A series of magnetic/rubber band muscle straps are placed on a skeletal model from their origin to their insertion.  Doing this exercise illustrates quickly how muscles can take on multiple roles or actions depending on where they attach to bones, how they cross the joints and what other muscles are at play.  For example; the biceps muscles can act to flex the elbow, flex the shoulder or supinate the forearm.

Anatomy classes are taught in small groups on Wednesdays 9:30 – 12:30 and 1:30 – 4:30.  A new series of anatomy classes begins January 9th

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