Today I started reading Figure Drawing For All It's Worth by Andrew Loomis (link below) which is a damn good book full of not just brilliant techniques but also some pretty spot on philosophies on being an artist, or at least trying to be one.
Loomis' angle on drawing the figure isnt about getting the exact form how you see it, but on how to make it look ideal and how you want it to look yet reinforces the fact that even though it is good to create an 'ideal' body, you still 100% need to apply anatomy and proportions because without this solid grounding your drawings will just look horrendous. An example of this is that Loomis himself drew characters with 8 heads tall, instead of the standard 7.5. This made the character look taller and more, as he puts it, 'ideal'.
Good read so far, still need to finish the first chapter (so much information) and print off his proportion guides. Gold stuff.