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Uzlo's avatar
Thoughts on Wings
By Uzlo   |   Watch
26K 1K 494K (1 Today)
Published: September 25, 2010
© 2010 - 2019 Uzlo
So, I did a little wing thing (Or, I did this a long time ago but never bothered to upload it). I'm no wing-major, but I thought it was funny to do and that perhaps someone would appreciate it considering how effing difficult it is to draw wings...

So, here's to all of you who care! : D

Mattias, the main model of this little tutorial-thing, is mine. His wings aren't that rainbow-ish (They look like the orange-brownish plumage one of the miniature wingpairs). It's for the sake of clarity!

Enjoy! Or something.

Edit: D....DD? ;___; *tears of Joy* Thank yoooou!

And since everyone ask me, all the time: No, I have not read Maximum ride.
Image size
800x3667px 1.93 MB
Adobe Photoshop CS3 Macintosh
anonymous's avatar
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cyborgagent017's avatar
Thank you so much for this, you have no idea! I have been trying to find some good diagrams and whatnot on how this could be possible and this was perfection!
Mininixpuppet's avatar
MininixpuppetHobbyist Filmographer
Thanks for this 

It’ll help me when learning anatomy and trying to braw my birds 
Labyriinthus's avatar
LabyriinthusStudent General Artist
chaolids's avatar
chaolidsHobbyist Traditional Artist
I love how you explain the anatomy and the folding! It really helped me with drawung wings more realisticly!
Keep up the awsome work! ;)
lunamoon303's avatar
lunamoon303Hobbyist Digital Artist
LB-Lee's avatar
LB-LeeProfessional General Artist
Found this a long time ago, and it made a big enough impression that I came and tracked it down ages later to fix structural issues with a cover I'm doing.  Thanks much!
praxcrown5's avatar
praxcrown5Hobbyist General Artist
Very nice!  The cute sketches between tutorial bits was a great touch. :D

foxxheart-chan's avatar
foxxheart-chanHobbyist Traditional Artist
(sorry for menioning maximum ride) while reading MR, they mention that they can fold their wings and put some clothes on and WHOOP look like normal people. my nine year old self who already had an image on how big wings should be when folded just yelled bullshit and threw the book on my bed
Mistyswirl's avatar
Lol saaaame! I mean, c'mon James Patterson! And don't get me started on all the loose plot-ends in the second series.....
foxxheart-chan's avatar
foxxheart-chanHobbyist Traditional Artist
oh gods, yeah.... *shivers*
rory-amy-pond's avatar
rory-amy-pondHobbyist Traditional Artist
thank you so much this was really helpful ive been looking for info on wings. i always thought wings on people was a cool concept
LittleClouds45's avatar
LittleClouds45Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is really helpful. Thanks!
DragonsNeedToEat's avatar
This was really interesting xD Thanks!
Lulullia's avatar
Thank you ! This very help me and I will train and draw wings again and again to really have the tip ! 
StupidCupidMusic's avatar
this was very helpful thank you
ZephyrForArt's avatar
ZephyrForArtHobbyist Digital Artist
WOW!!! Just WOW
This is really helpful for a project I'm working on!
Padriac85's avatar
Padriac85Hobbyist General Artist
This is... AMAZING.
Most amazingly detailed, yet simple tutorial on a mythical creature's anatomy. Why can't instruction books be as easy to understand as this?
Thank you! From someone who always has trouble (for some weird reason) assimilating information from 'teaching books'.
This is excellent!
sm0lmiscreati0n's avatar
sm0lmiscreati0nHobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you so much! I've been having so much trouble with this XD
xselenecx's avatar
Thank you for this. I have been having trouble drawing wings and this has helped a lot. Good explanation. :)
Izzy870's avatar
Imagine how hyper the people with hummingbird wings would be...
Evan-Harrey's avatar
Evan-HarreyStudent General Artist
thank you very much :D
The-Keen's avatar
The-KeenHobbyist Digital Artist
Do you have advice on measuring wings? Like knowing how big they should be for a person's height, and how to show the equivalent for folding wings and wings that are spread out?
seionara's avatar
seionaraHobbyist General Artist
Look up a thing called wing loading, the usual for birds is 1-20kg/m3 but it can be as big as 25kg/m2 (which is considered the upper limit for bird flight), in more imperial measurements the upper limit is 5.1lbs/squft and the more usual measurements along the lines of  0.20–4.10lbs/squft. It needn't work out 100% if you can't manage to get it quite to the right proportionality but it should probably not be too of if you're aiming for realism.
You figure out the square by drawing a picture that's as exact as possible and then using the height of a character as a guide (percentages can come in handy especially with metric measurements, just take the equivalent of on metre in your picture as 100% and then calculate how much percent your measurements are, the percentage is equivalent to the cm) and proceed as you were taught in school (it can be annoying and take a long time with unusual wing forms and don't forget to take both wings into account).
Then you get the approximate weight of your character (BMI calculators are your friend,try and take into account anatomical changes that may change it up like long tails or said wings or down like light bones, huge lungs and airsacs, also don't forget about organs when making characters, they are important) and divide it through the surface area of the wing (m2 or feet squared, depending on your measurement) and you have it.
If it's really off you may need to shift/shuffle things around a bit if you're going for realism/semi-realism and not very cartoony.
There's also a quite detailed crash course (thehehe~) over here and a few things on wing type and such, it's technically a blog for dragons but angels-being six limbed, fantastical creatures that we need to get airborne somehow-are close enough for all that information to still be relevant.

Some other potentially useful stuff for working with your angels.
f-nodragonart.tumblr.com/post/… (the lower part because wing shapes)

For folding, same thing, measure and fold, to make sure all sections stay the same length (needn't be as exact as with the calculations so just use rule of thumb). Also, look at how wings overlap when folded and how they fold (joints!!!). I have a few good tutorials I could pull up.
A very good and clear explaination:
Bird Wing Tutorial by TheAntimonyElement
Possibly not quite as clear but making a good point about posing.
TUTORIAL: Wings for Dragons by SammyTorres
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