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Paw reference guide by Canyx Paw reference guide by Canyx
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I made sure the images are high quality so that people can see more than just a mass of fur with claws sticking out the end. In fact, I made sure people can see every strand of fur between the toes if they choose to look. Okay maybe not. This was supposed to be 2X the current size, but my computer can't process something that huge. The images are still great though.
Nothing annoys me more than references that don't actually help, so I hope this collection of paw photos comes in handy for canine artists out there!

Black dog + sunlight = great overexposure shots.
The fur on his toes was cut recently so he has more traction, but that also helped in this case!

If you would like to see other external canine anatomy guides, let me know. My dog is trained to hold poses/not move if I tell him to, so getting good resource shots is just another excuse to give him praise and treats : )
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:iconrookie141:
Rookie141 Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
thanks for this tutorial :)
although i draw rather many canines i still struggle with paws
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:icondottifox:
DottiFox Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you so much! This is really helpful!
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:icontheterrible1:
theterrible1 Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2012  Student
VERY good and detailed tutorial with good photos and informative text, thank you so much! :D
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:iconcanyx:
Canyx Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2012
Thanks! I'm so glad it helped!
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:icontheterrible1:
theterrible1 Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2012  Student
^^
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:iconflurrin:
Flurrin Featured By Owner Oct 8, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Very helpful!
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:iconparadoxcomplex:
ParadoxComplex Featured By Owner Sep 28, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
A great reference guide you put together here. I have been looking for dome decent photos to help me with paws and here I find yours. Thank you for posting, and great pictures as well. And you dog is quite a beauty.:D
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:iconcanyx:
Canyx Featured By Owner Sep 28, 2011
Thanks! I'm glad this was helpful to you :D
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:iconparadoxcomplex:
ParadoxComplex Featured By Owner Sep 29, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
Yes,very.:3
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:iconkarkat-the-owl:
karkat-the-owl Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
this is so helpful and your dog is soooo cute! my dog looks EXACTLYY like yours except he has a white chest lol
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:iconcanyx:
Canyx Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2011
Thanks! I guess your dog must be a cutie too ;)
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:icondestinysight:
destinysight Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Many.Great.Pictures.
Great!
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:iconaniku-kitare:
Aniku-Kitare Featured By Owner Jul 11, 2011
You are my hero for this! My dog won't cooperate long enough for me to get refs from him.
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:iconcanyx:
Canyx Featured By Owner Jul 11, 2011
XD
Thanks! Sounds like your dog doesn't appreciate art! :]
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:iconaniku-kitare:
Aniku-Kitare Featured By Owner Jul 11, 2011
Not one bit, he'll paw at me if I'm drawing and ignoring him. :fear:
Reply
:iconwakerra:
Wakerra Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
on a side note, what helped me to understand dog/cat paws, was that they both walk on their toes. if you underlined the structure of skeleton underneath, specially in the "lying down" part, it would help people more so understand why a paw looks the way it does
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:iconfinchya:
Finchya Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
These are really good references. Thank you for sharing!
Reply
:iconanimewolveslover:
AnimeWolveslover Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
this is great because it has photos of a real dog. and your dog is really cute :)
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:iconcanyx:
Canyx Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2011
Thanks!
Yeah I really wanted this to be a resource guide and not a how-to-draw guide. There are plenty of those on DA but not many good, clear photos of paws.
Reply
:iconanimewolveslover:
AnimeWolveslover Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
yeah that's true
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:iconbonsaiwolf19:
bonsaiwolf19 Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
ooooo this si soo helpful. :) My dogs don't like stay in one place and will often follow me and or get in the way of a picture XD attention hogs. Your Soro looks like my Ruby but longer legs
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:iconcanyx:
Canyx Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2011
Glad it helps!
Aww, Ruby must be one gorgeous dog then ;)
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:iconbonsaiwolf19:
bonsaiwolf19 Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
She's adorable :) She's got the mixture of the collie and lab(we think) My dad rescued her from the animal shelter when someone dropped her off when she was a puppy outside in the show when the shelter was closed.
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:iconrattlesire:
Rattlesire Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
This is the most amazing tutorial on the planet.

I demand more shots and more external anatomy. I'd love if you could do one of the overall running. Take shot by shot or just in general show the dynamics of a dog running, walking, trotting, jumping.

I'm medicated right now so I'm going to ask for everything. But you know I love dynamics and movement so show off that stuff. 83
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:iconcanyx:
Canyx Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2011
Oooo, movement shots are the best! And also the hardest. I'll try my best! (will need an assistant so I can get parallel shots).
But for now, I recommend youtubing:"Dog running slow motion."
Very beautiful and helpful videos on movement.
It'll also be double-awesome because you're on drugs ;)
Reply
:iconrattlesire:
Rattlesire Featured By Owner Jun 30, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
Oh! Yeah, there was this really awesome slow motion video on youtube in German that was all about the anatomy of walking, trotting, and running german shepherds. It was AMAZING (even without drugs).
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Details

Submitted on
June 29, 2011
Image Size
2.9 MB
Resolution
1500×8000
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Camera Data

Make
Canon
Model
Canon EOS REBEL T1i
Shutter Speed
1/128 second
Aperture
F/5.6
Focal Length
57 mm
ISO Speed
100
Date Taken
Jun 27, 2011, 6:54:53 PM
Lens
EF-S18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS
Software
Paint.NET v3.5.6
Sensor Size
22mm
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