Since most people have seen horses in real life, and they're considered a favorite animal and art subject by many, I'm going to use the horse as my subject for the topic of drawing legs today.
If you want to draw horses the first thing you should do is learn their basic anatomy. I recommend you go do an image search for horse anatomy before continuing. Look at some pictures that have all the body parts named. Study some pictures of muscles and skeletons. And you really should keep an anatomy book like Animal Anatomy for Artists on your bookshelf. So I won't be giving you an anatomy lesson today. I will, however, add an image with the names of a few major leg joints here just for handy reference so you'll know what I'm talking about when I name joints.
- The upper and lower sections of the horse's leg are each rather straight. The main bend, or angle, in the leg is only at the hock joint.
- When the horse is standing squarely, the lower section of the leg is nearly perpendicular to the ground. It should only be angled if the horse has shifted its foot forward, or is walking or running. In that case the entire leg should be rotated forward or back, not just the lower part.
- Remember the buttocks. Drop a line from the buttocks to the ground and see where your leg is relative to that line. If it's too far forward or backward it should be because your horse is in motion, walking, running, or trotting.