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If you stop and think about it, the majority of book reviews focus on works of fiction and non-fiction, that are primarily text, with few or no visual elements. This one is an exception to that rule in that the book Pose Muse collection of titles, specifically Poses for Artists Vol.1 Dynamic and Sitting Poses by Justin Martin, is a guide to posing subjects for art enthusiasts.

The book is filled with 110 pages of poses, primarily geared toward those who work with pencil drawings, but its content can easily be adapted to other artwork. As the publication’s title states, the emphasis is on a couple of very different types of posing. Sitting poses, as a concept, are pretty simplistic. Naturally, they focus on the subjects being in a seated position. Dynamic poses may be a bit more of a term that is less familiar to novice artists, or those just getting into the arts. The term refers to a body position associated with movement. For example, it may deal with someone that looks to be in the activity of running or jumping.

Instead of simply showing poses in their completed form, the author provided his samples in the format of drawings, with lines and shapes that make up the structure of the final work, and can help those who need it to become more familiar with the underlying elements of drawing the human body. In that regard, it’s kind of like those learn to draw, type books that help readers with animals and dinosaurs. Perhaps you remember those as a child.

He uses vibrant samples, that avoid the boredom that can sometimes come with black and white drawing and posing guides. The use of such tones can also help to foster an interest in the arts in the first place.

As I stated, this guide does seem to be focused on drawing. However, there is no doubt that it can be applied to other artistic efforts. For example, as a photographer, I can see this as a valuable reference piece when it comes to posing a client for anything from basic portrait work to model photography, in order to build upon the current poses that you use or add some ideas for future sessions. Naturally, that can be adapted to have the same benefits for anyone who works with painting. The shapes and lines in the book can surely work as the basic outline that a painter uses to start the process of a new piece of artwork.

One of the best parts about this book is that it has value, not only for people across different types of art using different mediums to create their work, but also has something that can be of value to artists of all different skill levels. And as such, it can also work for a variety of ages. While I might not recommend it for really young children, I’d say anything from high school on would be appropriate.

All in all, this book, in either it’s digital or print format, is well worth the investment for anyone who is interested in learning to draw or pose their subject. And, if you are looking for more poses, the author also has volumes that go into how to work with poses for standing, fighting and working with couples among other things.

The author indicates that one of his primary goals is to get people to WANT to draw. The content he provides goes a long way in doing that.

The publication, available online at PoseMuse and through Amazon.com, is provided in both a traditional print format, and as an e-book for those who prefer their publications in digital format.

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