Making pin-ups! (a few tips)

The other day talking with a fellow artist, he mentioned he wanted to begin drawing pin-ups, but just couldn’t get it right. One of his try, although promising, just doesn’t looked fully like a pin-up.

Making a pin-up illustration isn’t difficult, but does require the acknowlege of certain “rules” to fully explode your potential as a creador of sexy imagery (because that is pin-ups are, right?)

I’m not an expert, but here is what I have learned so far:

The character is everything

You can have a pin-up with only the character and no background whatsoever, but not on the contrary. The character is everything, and it must produce feelings on the viewer, (yeah, that kind of feelings, you pervert) the characters in pin-ups illustrations must have life, be interesting to the eye!

You must reveal part of her or his attitude in the attire and pose, in her or his expression.

“Why are you looking at me like that?!”

A dull character makes for a forgetable, boring pin-up, or at least, that is how I see it.

Also, if there is a background, the character must ALWAYS stand out from it.

Anatomy, anatomy, anatomy

Just as important. I don’t want to hear any excuses about styles, (of course you have to learn about anatomy silly!) even cartoony  pin-ups girls have a sense of proportion and harmony.

Jonh K is the king of wacky yet sexy things

Seriously, do some research about the female body, you don’t want to end up drawing things like this…

Rob Liefeld is the name of disasters

When in doubt, look at the old masters

No inspiration? don’t worry, the internet is full of great illustrations! especially vintage pin-ups, personally, they are my favorite since they are great for copying styles, poses and aesthetics.

Andrew Loomis

Not only drawings, but photos as well.

Bettie Page!

Someday I will do a full tutorial explaining how I draw my girls, but for now, I hope this humble guide will give you some ideas, dear reader.


I hope to see you soon!

Atte: Minerva





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