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Submitted on
May 9
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So Your Angels Have Bird Wings by squidlifecrisis So Your Angels Have Bird Wings by squidlifecrisis
Sept 25: bird wing folding animation + prep photos: Bio Animation: Wing Fold + Spread by squidlifecrisis

May 22: edited as per :iconfalconsong:'s critique!  Thank you! :)

I had the primaries not quite lined up correctly on the folded ventral view--very minor edit, but important, so if anyone saved this for reference, go ahead and replace your copy with this version.
(And I changed some wording, but I'm sure someone will still find a way to whine about it bahaha)

Wing Palsy Awareness by squidlifecrisis


This isn't a critique of angel anatomy.

This is a critique of bird wing anatomy.  Which can be critiqued objectively because it's a real thing.  One ought to understand bird wings before one goes gluing them onto humans.  Even good artists fall into this stunted-secondary-trap...................

I played with a lot of dead birds to get this information.  It's not in any other tutorials!  Go forth and use it, and lower everyone's blood pressure (or at least just mine).

more wings:

Homo Neornithes v2 by squidlifecrisisWoodcock Wings by squidlifecrisisudc character refsheet by squidlifecrisis

why waist-wings don't work:
So Your Angel Has Waist Wings by squidlifecrisis

edit: to everyone having fits for various reasons: a small preview of the extent of my angel anatomy project
edit again: to everyone having fits specifically about pectorals: Check.

Want to use some aspect of my angel anatomy but aren't sure if you're referencing too much?  Read the FAQ!  Credit is appreciated but not required :)
Add a Comment:
Virune Featured By Owner 4 days ago  Hobbyist General Artist
this is really really helpful, thank you so much for putting this together!
i have always struggled with drawing wings because of all the little details ;_;
Raayner Featured By Owner Sep 26, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh my gosh thank you I have been trying to understand wings on people for so long and all of your stuff is the clearest and most concise things I have ever seen. thank you so much this is so helpful
ChibiKera-chan Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2014  Student General Artist
Thank you, thank you, thank you! I've been searching for bird wing on humans tutorial  for my tengu character but it's hard to find anything that doesn't have angel wings. 
RobnRoll Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
hmmm... doing the anatomy lifelike or showing angel butt... tough choice.
Hunting-wolf Featured By Owner May 30, 2014
Ha, I've never thought of this before! Great tutorial, thank you! :D
repliroid2 Featured By Owner May 30, 2014  Professional Artist
Thanks for the tutorial and references!
VeronaEspada Featured By Owner May 30, 2014  Student General Artist
Recently, I've been trying to do things like this. I suppose I'll keep this for safe-keeping.
CJCroen Featured By Owner May 25, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I-Have-Amazing-Wings Featured By Owner May 22, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
this makes perfectly normal senese in every way possible...
deadlyjusticelove Featured By Owner May 20, 2014  Student Digital Artist
I personally love this tutorial. I think I will use it in the future for my angels as a reference. OwO However, I will say that angel wings don't necessarily have to be anatomically correct. They are fantasy creatures after all. Considering anatomy can help make things seem more realistic, but you also have to consider the aesthetic component as well (which does vary with style). Your wings are a bit bulky and I think for some styles that really doesn't fit. So...I think calling people lazy when not considering bird anatomy for angel wings is a bit extreme. It's really just a personal preference and whatever suits your story and overall style more. :D Either way, I really admire your dedication and attention to detail. 
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