Hi, are you thinking about getting yourself a mannequin for drawing?
Perhaps you have stumbled upon Armature Nine Manikins and now you are doing quick research, looking for reviews and opinions.
In this article, I wrote a review of one of my mannequins. Whether you are interested in this certain brand or not, I also write about things you should generally look at, if you want to get a mannequin for drawing.
Hope it will help you with your research!
I will try to be as objective as I can. By the way, the photos you see here are shot by me. The color of this mannequin varies because some of these photos I shot with flash (it’s autumn in my country and it gets dark pretty quickly). Ps. Sorry for the mess on my desk 🙂
Also I need to state that at the time I’m writing this review, Armature Nine Mannequins are currently unavailable. Here’s info from the creator:
“Hi! I’m currently working on orders placed between 8/10/20 – 9/15/20 <- I will update this as progress is made
Due to this highly unusual delay I suspended further sales of the A9-RIGS on 9/15/20. Sales will resume once I’m caught up.
Consider signing up for the mailing list (find it at the bottom of this page) so you can get an email from me once the figures come back online.
Thank you so much for your patience and sorry for the inconvenience!”
||29 cm (11.4 inches)
||Weight: 3.2 oz
||Wood Composite (3d printed) | has 8 magnets ( 6 on feet and 2 on hands)
||Comes with Platform & Clip-Stand, + hex key
Ranger, standing on my desk. He’s a bit reddish here, but that’s because of poor light in the room. In reality, its color is very light brown.
He is made of 48 parts that are 3d printed. This model is made from a wood composite, but you can also get a model made of Ivory-colored plastic (it has static hands). On his chest, Ranger has the Armature Nine logo, as well as on the stand.
It comes together with Platform and Clip-stand (you don’t have to purchase that separately).
Now, what’s most important for me personally (it is so crucial, that I’m making my whole decision if I get something or not) – is the possibility to get additional parts if anything breaks.
I have a special ability to accidentally destroy things. I also don’t want to purchase the whole product if I break a small part of it when there are no separate parts.
Armature Nine gives us the possibility to purchase additional parts (if anything happens to your mannequin) – the “standard” parts, and additional pieces to customize your mannequin.
*at this moment Armature Nine mannequins are unavailable, but they will be back at the end of 2020. If you own Ranger and need any parts, I would suggest just reaching out directly to the creator
Below is a photo of the mannequin, together with the mentioned stands and key.
Ranger has magnets on his hands and feet. It can easily pose on the stand (Brushed steel stand, susceptible to magnets) on its own, the magnets help to keep it stabilized. However, you can attach the mannequin to a clip-stand, to create action poses. This rod attached to the mannequin is flexible, but sturdy ad the same time, you can also get an extension and attach to the rod, to make it longer.
Here’s a jumping pose:
At first, when I saw Ranger on the internet, the thing that attracted my attention most was its poseable hands and feet. Most of the mannequins I saw had plastic, static hands, and in some models, you could buy additional posed hands. However, you won’t need to do that with this model 🙂
Here are photos of feet, you can see the magnets in them.
You might notice the rough place on the right ankle, it’s clearly visible in the middle photo. Just wanted to say that it doesn’t bother me at all. I don’t have much knowledge about 3d print, so I don’t know if that’s something that may occur often. I just left it as it is.
Here are the hands. So tiny! I suspect that after some time, they will be the first to loosen. They are delicate and I take extra caution not to break them ( since that’s my special ability, I destroy things by accident. Unusually often). After some usage and posing, the hands are still fine, so that’s a good sign. I never suspected I will have so much fun posing a figure. The possibility to create gestures is a great advantage.
I did a little test on the hands, and so lead by my curiosity I gave the Ranger a pencil to hold. That’s an ordinary pencil, no magnets/metal in it. I was slowly rotating the arm to see if Ranger will be able to hold it on its own. So, the pencil fell out of course a few times when I was rotating the arm, but hey, in the end, I was able to pose the hand in a way, that Ranger is able to hold it!
It was a test just for fun, and the pencil was very light, if you give him anything that is a little bit heavier, he won’t be rather able to hold it on its own. But if you give him anything that is made of metal, he can hold it without any problems thanks to the magnet. I just gave him a spoon to hold, and now he is just standing on the metal stand (on one foot) with a spoon in his left hand for several hours (* I will take some photos at weekend and update the article).
What is Armature Nine?
Armature Nine (or A9-RIG) is a brand created by an artist Paul Siegel. It’s a collection of articulated products. They provide various poseable models: human figures, animals, and fictional figures as well (dragon, unicorn, griffin, digitrade).
Human figures can be divided into small [for example “Rider”, 15 cm (6 inches) ] and larger ones [Ranger 29 cm (11.4 inches)].
Also, I want to point out that Armature Nine (Large collection) provides also genders/ ages, that are proportional to each other – by that I mean there’s no difference in size/proportions to the mannequins, as I see in some other brands.
So, Armature Mannequins collection includes Ranger (female, and male), Tween, and a Kid. There’s also a Baby, that makes the family complete.
[personal comment:] …Hmm, but wait, that’s the dog that makes the family complete! Let me… ah, here it is!
Armature Nine has also in its offer Canines and Felines (and other animal mannequins!):
Armature Nine contest
Every month, you can join a drawing contest on artmanikinchallenge.com.
So, every month Artmature Nine publishes a photo of Armature Nine Mannequin’s pose. The goal is to create a drawing, based on this certain pose. The winner is selected by votes.
Check out the website or Armature’s Nine Facebook page for more information. The winner gets about 160$ credit, which is an equivalent of 1 “Ranger Manikin“.
By the way, there’s many photos that you can use as drawing reference! Check out Armature Nine pinterest.
Ps. Here’s my drawing (based on a mannequin) I did for the contest! It’s was fun to participate.
Other questions and answers
What to do if the mannequin gets loosen up?
A suggestion – if you purchase a mannequin, get also a glue to tighten the joints.
That’s the main problem I saw when I researched mannequins for drawing, and I mean, any mannequin made by other brands. Armature Nine is not much different, it has even poseable more parts than other mannequins.
The joints are ok, but I can see that with time they can loosen up. I played with Ranger a little bit, and used too much force on his thumb – and unfortunately, it got loosen.
My Thoughts and suggestions
Here’s a quick summary of my thoughts about Armature’s Nine Ranger, listed as Pros and cons
- poseable hands, fingers, and feet
- possibility to get additional parts (you don’t have to purchase a new product if something breaks, just the damaged part
- possibility to customize your mannequin – you can purchase additional parts for your mannequin, such as wings, tails, different heads, and hands with clavs
- you can contact the seller to order a custom made mannequin
- you don’t have tobuy stands separately, they come together with your ordered mannequin (Ranger)
- some small parts are loose/ can get loose quickly. Better get a tightening glue when placing the order
- not for everyone – you need to have a basic knowledge about human anatomy and muscles because Armature Nine models have very little/none outline of muscles.
If you want to learn anatomy, please go to this article: List of Human Anatomy Books for Drawing
This mannequin is made to be as much poseable as it can be, unfortunately with a cost.
So if you are looking for something very realistic, with muscles and synthetic skin, check out Phicen
That was my summary. I hope this article answered some of your questions. Feel free to leave a comment if you have more of them!
Please check out also these articles, they might be useful for you:
– Best Poseable Mannequins for Drawing ( list of Mannequins for Drawing, and a list of free online posers)
– Poseable Animal Mannequins for drawing ( list of Animal Mannequins, and some online posers)
– Pose resources ( Hight quality photo resources for artists)