January 8, 2008
It's the most complex of the large bone masses in the body, and I still find it a challenge after all these years - how do you simplify it? Essentially you can see it as two plates at angles to each other - the illiac masses - connected at the back by the spine and at the front by the pubis bones. You can visualize it as a box within the body, or as a sort of butterfly shape. You can think of the pelvis as the keystone that bridges the legs and supports and balances the spine above - you can also think of it as a basket that holds the guts and sex organs.
It expresses itself on the outer form subtly, as arcs that curve down towards the groin in the front. Huge bunches of leg muscles attach themselves to the iliac ridge from below, and the abdominal and oblique muscles from above.
There's nothing to do but draw it over and over, looking for its mass within the figure. It will always be there, I swear to you.
Here is a detail from Albinus's Tabulae sceleti et musculorum corporis humani (London, 1749).
Posted by Chris Muller