I'm currently creating a multi-language "Mountain Rescue Casualty Card". It's basically a card (a4paper front and back) which tells the first aid rescuer where someone is hurt after an accident.

Now my version is based upon a few previous versions. But the problem lies in the human figure. The previous versions are a sequence of copy-and-paste versions for the figure of the human body. This yields a low-quality picture. My goal is to make a larger figure of this, and I was hoping to do this with Adobe Illustrator (version CS6).

I've been able to find one of the earlier versions (where the figure is in somewhat a decent quality). The only downpart is that there is a fold en the quality isn't that good.

enter image description here

I was wondering of there were some tutorials or hints to make these kind of drawings ?

Just to be clear I'm not trying to make money of this, I'm a hobbiest who just wants to make sure that the people I'm with in the mountains get the care they need and as fast as possible.

I already found somekind of tutorial for drawing a female body here. I was wondering if someone knew of that kind of tutorial for the (general) human body as depicted above.

  • 2
    It ultimately comes down to using the Pen Tool within Illustrator. There are no real shortcuts. Any tutorials (or simply exploration) into the Pen Tool will be the most beneficial.
    – Scott
    Aug 4, 2014 at 17:53
  • @Scott Thanks for the quick response. I'm currently going trough "Classroom in a book" of Adobe Illustrator CS6. I just started out yesterday, but the above question seemed like a fun exercise towards the future. The pen-tool is the subject for lesson 5, so who knows towards the end of the week :). The goal of this question was mostly some hints for beginners. I found this one: design.tutsplus.com/tutorials/… maybe I could base myself upon this one ?
    – Nick
    Aug 5, 2014 at 6:18

1 Answer 1


I thought casualty meant you were dead. Wikipedia says not always, but you could just call it an injury card.

"I was wondering of there were some tutorials or hints to make these kind of drawings ?"

Find a kindergardner and give them a black pen. Tell them to draw Frankenstein, but naked. Then make a Xerox of it, and a Xerox of that Xerox. Repeat that several times and stick the last Xerox in the back seat of your car for a year where people sit on it. Then unfold it and scan it, and put a blue-green fill layer with 13% opacity over top of the scan in Photoshop. Save it in color at the lowest jpg quality setting it allows. There's my tutorial. :-)

If you want to draw as a hobby and are trying this kind of drawing then there's nothing Illustrator will do as magic to help you. You have to know what's wrong with the picture or you can't fix it. Basic mistakes you only need to read the first page of how to draw people to know... your eyes are centered in your head for instance, not floating up in the top 1/3rd.


If you want to communicate places of injury then it should be accurate. The hands shouldn't be mangled beforehand. Also if the hand is that small what good is marking it, it will just be "hand injured". You could have just said that. Maybe you need zoom levels so there is a close up of hands.

If this is a charity purpose then why not use a free drawing. You will just be frustrated if you try to draw a good human figure on a computer if you haven't done it with a pencil first. Don't believe the marketing, Illustrator just makes drawing harder. It's good for finishing a drawing but you should always sketch first.

Also maybe they should be taking pictures instead. That would be more accurate. Is it really easier to carry around an emergency paper card than some kind of emergency camera phone?

  • first of all the name "Mountain Rescue Casualty Card" is an official name for the thing, I didn't invent it ;). And it's not really chairity, it's for my personal mountain first-aid kit. I'm currently learning Adobe Illustrator and it seemed like a fun/useful challange to try this. That's the way to keep on learning I think ? Next to that, the use of pictures isn't very usefull in a life threatening situation. Usually you can see from far that someone has a few open bone fractures after a fall. It's the (chance of) spinal injury and concussion that you can't see on a simple photograph ;).
    – Nick
    Aug 5, 2014 at 5:49
  • Next to that a photo doesn't tell you WHERE the injury is. Whereas these kind of cards do. The victims are picked up by helicopter and evaluated immediately by a medical professional who is able to treat the person right away as long as he can find the injury. My hope was to get a somewhat bigger (nicer) figure to speed up the finding of the injuries. Not that I think that it takes long already. But then again it seemed like a fun exercise for learning Adobe Illustrator. And as a last point, for a broken hand we don't call first aid since it takes on average 3 hours for them to arrive ;).
    – Nick
    Aug 5, 2014 at 5:53
  • I thought it must be that the card was something you'd carry down a mountain because you couldn't bring the person because they were injured. It's still confusing what it's for. Anyway if you're just practicing in Illustrator then that's fine but I would start from another drawing. You might have more fun with something simpler to draw if you can just use a clip art for this.
    – Cakey
    Aug 5, 2014 at 9:53
  • It's a card on which you put the identification and injuries of the victim. The card is handed over to the first aid rescuer so that he is aware of possible spine and head trauma which is important for transportation. Once the victim is loaded into the helicopter the card also serves as an identification and contact-sheet (since helicopters only pick up victims, no one else). And sure, I'm running trough the "Classroom in a book" for adobe illustrator, but is seemed like a usefull exercise to try to create such a card in a better format.
    – Nick
    Aug 5, 2014 at 12:57

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