When making fashion sketches, you have to draw the arms in proportion to the rest of the body, or your drawing will look very off-balance. A common beginner’s mistake is to make the arms too short, so use the correct head count. Arms should be 2-1/2 heads long, not including the wrists and hands.

The elbows should line up with the waistline, about 3 heads from the top. Use your stick figure proportions as a guide to find the correct arm lengths.

Draw a figure’s arm like this:

  1. At the end of each shoulder line, lightly pencil in two cylinders for the upper and lower arms. A circle between the two represents the elbow.

    The length of the upper arm is about 1-1/2 heads, and the forearm is about 1 head long. End the first cylinder at the elbow, which is across from the waistline. The waistline is 3 heads down.

    The second cylinder ends arounds the top of the thigh (or 4 heads down) and tapers down to where the wrist and hand begin.

  2. Turn the sides of the cylinders into gentle curves to represent the muscles.

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