References are essential for creating sketches, studies, painting and drawings. Today I will be discussing some usefull sites, accounts and other resources where you can find reference material for your artwork. You will find the direct links to said sites and accounts in the discriptions below.
Deviantart is a wonderful art platform that encourages artists from all media to post their artwork. You can also find stock photos, which are great for reference photos. These are my favourite accounts:
This account has a great variety of subjects: from general poses to combat references, from slender figures to big people, featuring both female and male subjects. Her site (which you can find here ) also has a sketch feature, which allows you to quickly switch between images ( which is great if you want to spend more time on your anatomy/pose studies).
These stock photos are from Mirish; a young Swedish woman who has a gallery full of wonderfull, high quality images. Besides offering dynamic posed references, these pictures can also be used as inspiration: most of them offer great light/shadows and background scenery.
I use the stock photos from RobynRose often for my quick anatomy and facial studies; her account offers the most consistent pack of poses and facial references.
Disclaimer: Note that many of the stockphoto accounts have rules using their stockphotos. Please, be respectful, read their rules and follow them when you do use their photos.
Sometimes, the best place to find references are in an artbook. I own several, though it does take some time (and money) to invest in them. However, if your Internet connection, for whatever reason, is not working (horror), you can always get your book of the shelf and continue drawing.
Portrait and Anatomy
These are my oldest books and I believe I got them for my birthday, many years ago. But these are just classics, with great images and easy steps to follow. The books are in Dutch, but Giovanni Civardi (not only an artist but a docent of Medicine (Anatomy) as well!) is published in many countries.
Vincent van Gogh
Artbooks like these are just splendid. Not only do they tell you the artists journey, but they show their artworks as well. Perfect reference material and a pleasant way to get a bit closer to your favourite artist.
Pinterest is the easiest way to find reference photos, but it can be a bit trickier to use when you are looking for a specific reference. I currently manage three Pinterest boards where I store my references, you can find them here:
And that is my quick guide to references! I hope you guys find this usefull. If you have any suggestions for a next tutorial, please comment below!
If you are interested in digital art tutorials, here are a few examples:
Reference tutorial – Brushes – Textures