Sunday, January 9, 2011

SATYR (legs Day 6)

For those of you who do not care about the science behind this, skip the boring lecture part now.

Adaptions of Unguligrade legs for the human torso by Mark A. Dennis
Lets take a look at goat and other unguligrade (mammals which walk on their toes) leg structure. For those of you who are following and sculpting Digitgrade (mammals which walk on the digits and balls of the feet- ie: werewolves) legs, you will need to do your own research.
Don't ya just love those big words?

 This illustration (unkown artist) shows the comparison of the human leg to the bones of the horse hind leg. As the horse and goat are both unguligrades, we will use the horse example because there are lots more photos out there.
See how the bones correspond. We have the same number of joints but they look different because the horse/goat walks on its toes like a ballerina.
 This image of the goat skeleton shows the three basic sections of the leg as almost equal in length.
I liked the proportions of the horse leg better so when I designed my satyr I kept the middle length of leg (tibia) shorter than the upper and lower sections.

Welcome back! Ha, ha! We are going to do some more boring science stuff here so I'll meet you down below.

 I have sculpted a mini-leg to show how the muscles would attach on the real satyr leg. I get to make this up based upon the actual mechanics of a real leg because no one has yet to dissect a satyr leg and publish his or her findings. Ground-breaking science here, eh?
 I am using a human femur which is in proportion to the upper leg of my male figure. This fits against an adaptation of the goat tibia which I have shortened to look really cool. Note the kneecap.
The tibia sits into a joint at what would be our ankle. There is a spur of bone coming off the back which would be a human heel.
Think of the next bone as a long toe bone which buts up against the smaller bones of the toe. The last section of the leg is the toe nail or hoof. Make sense?

 Front view of fore-mentioned jibberish.

Rear view. Note the slight inside angle of the heel.  Goats are like humans in that we all stand with our feet splayed to the outside slightly.

 The lower bones are controlled by tendons which are pulled by muscles in the center section of the leg.
White clay-tendons. Blue clay- muscles.
The muscles on the front and side of the tibia control the forward motion of the lower leg.
The back of the leg has two muscle groups which run together but operate different bones. The first is shown here. It is a muscle which attaches to the tibia and  runs over the heel then all the way to the tippy-toe to control the position of the hoof.

 The second muscle group on the back of the leg corresponds to our calf muscle. It is anchored to the upper leg and runs to the heel. This pulls the heel forward to straighten the leg
The middle section of the leg is controlled by muscles attached to the upper bone of the leg. This is designed just like a human leg with the muscles attaching at the hip and running down past the knee to attach to the middle bone. There are four of these large muscles (quadriceps); two to pull the middle leg forward, two to pull it backward.
This image shows the top or front muscles attaching over the front of the knee.
 This shows the back set attaching to the back of the leg and below the back of the knee.
Inside of leg. disregard the lack of muscle and tendon on the mid section, I got lazy.
From the bottom.
All done. Yum, honey-cured ham anyone?


Now you can rejoin us with our sculpting project!
Our finished sculpted legs with all the bulges, bumps, and lumps.

The hooves will be cured as is then a layer of clay added just like we do fingernails.
Most of the leg will be covered in hair.

When next we meet, the final details before curing our satyr.
Have a great day!


  1. Oh, I am in anatomy geek heaven. THANKS! Do you have sources you recommend (on the odd chance I don't own them yet)?

  2. Oh my, oh my. What can I say. You have done your research!

  3. Fantastic! I love this stuff Mark:) Keep it coming! I have learned so much.

  4. Mark,
    I admire your ability to share your knowledge.
    It helps me a lot.
    Thank you

  5. Very informative and inspiring.

  6. Mark, all I have to say is that YOU ARE AWSOME!! Thank you so much for these lessons...I am learning SO much.
    Blessings, carla

  7. Mark,
    I have to admit, this is one of the BEST anatomy lessons I have ever had the pleasure of learning. Excellent job on breaking it down into a very simplistic and understandable format. I look forward to the next lesson.

  8. can u do that to a real human? LOL! no, i'm really serious. add fur, too.

  9. You are Amazing! I'm working on a miniture Satyr and this has helped alot! Thankyou!

  10. Working on a similar project the goat - like Ancient Greek god Pan for an anatomy for 3d artists lesson though I really loved your process and your Satyr I still can;t figure out how he can walk without the form of human foot that works like a fulcrum to move forward the center of mass.
    I welcome any suggestions