I was looking at a good oldie of a book yesterday, preparing for a lesson to teach on balance and rhythm. I have two old George B. Bridgman books on anatomy. The one I was referencing to for this lesson was "Bridgman's Life Drawing". He looks at the two, balance and rhythm, separately. I was so moved by what I saw and read I thought I would give his methods a try. It's great when I get taught a lesson through what I am about to teach!
Bridgman's method with balance is a straight line of gravity from the nape of the neck down. Wherever that lands is the center of balance. Just a straight line. Simple enough.
This section fascinated me! But this is what he said specifically to rhythm and the human figure:
So to express rhythm in drawing a figure we have in the balance of masses a subordination of the passive or inactive side to the more forceful and angular side in action, keeping constantly in mind the hidden, subtle flow of symmetry throughout.
That totally opened a new window for me when drawing the figure. And to think I just always opened the book to look at the pretty pictures. Glad I finally matured enough to read it!