Learn to Draw Star Wars Villains
November 30th, 2018 by diane92345

Using just two graphite pencils, two types of erasers, drawing paper, and this book, you can Learn to Draw Star Wars Villains.

After a brief look at tools and techniques, the book dives into a step-by-step approach of drawing eleven Star Wars villains. Here is a complete list of those shown:

  • Darth Maul
  • General Grevious
  • Count Dooku
  • Emperor Palpatine/Darth Sidious
  • Darth Vader
  • Bib Fortuna
  • Jabba the Hutt
  • Boba Fett
  • Kylo Ren
  • Captain Phasma
  • Supreme Leader Snoke

There are also closer looks at how to draw lightsabers and trooper helmets, drawing faces behind masks, and the differences between Boba and Jango Fett. How I wish I had read the helmet section before buying my then-teenage daughter a Storm Trooper helmet online. When it arrived, she started crying and shouted that it was a clone warrior helmet. I said but look it has the mouth scoops. I now know that it was a Phase II clone helmet. At the time, I was thinking of the Phase I clone helmet. Heavy sigh…

The steps for each drawing start with simple circles and gradually add details and texture until the finished picture emerges. There are excellent details about how to make fabrics look worn and achieve the right texture depending on the type of material. It also shows the reader how to draw leather and metallic parts accurately.

Learn to Draw Star Wars Villains is a great gift choice for the artist or Star Wars fan in your life. It doesn’t assume any pre-existing level of drawing skill. For younger artists, copying the rough outline would also work. 4 stars!

Thanks to the publisher, Walter Foster, and NetGalley for an advance copy in exchange for an honest review.

Posted in New Books, Non-fiction Tagged with: , ,

Make Manga
April 12th, 2018 by diane92345

Focusing on composition and coloring, Make Manga! is a great next step for pencil artists.

While sketching is almost a sixth of the book, it seems too brief for most beginning manga artists. The inking and especially coloring sections are extremely well done. Most pages explain both what to do and why. Note that the author uses exclusively watercolor for backgrounds and large areas of characters. It may not be a good fit for those who dislike that type of media.

The chapters on composition and creativity are particularly useful for self-taught artists. There are also step-by-step guides in the back to create a day and a night composition for those needing more assistance.

Make Manga! would make a great gift (along with some art supplies) for the budding artist in your life. 3 stars!

Thanks to the publisher, Impact Books, and NetGalley for an advanced copy. This book will be published on 4/17/2018.

Posted in Non-fiction Tagged with: , ,

Chibi!: Official Mark Crilley How-to-Draw Guide
March 19th, 2018 by diane92345

Drawing chibis (big heads and small bodies) that are seen in manga is easy and cheap if you use Chibi!: Official Mark Crilley How-to-Draw Guide.  All that is needed is some nice bristol paper, a regular pencil, a pencil sharpener, several pens with a variety of tip sizes, a 15” clear ruler, some kneaded erasers and some practice time.

Mr. Crilley starts simply with the basic chibi girl and boy including their hairstyles, clothing and manga emotion symbols.  In Part 2, he includes some more advanced poses like panda, fox, witch, fantasy, kissing and action. The chibi dog, cat and robot are adorable. Part 3 gives 78 ways to use your new drawing abilities including cards, signs, t-shirts, stickers, buttons, rubber stamps, pop-ups and calendars. My favorite, and sadly lacking, ability was to create a chibi that looks like a real person.

Chibi!: Official Mark Crilley How-to-Draw Guide would be an excellent gift for the manga fan in your life.  If they are already into producing art, it would also be nice to include those items listed in the first paragraph that they are lacking.  I have been asking my daughter, an A+ art student in high school, to make my face into a manga character for my blog.  She has let me down for over 13 years.  Now I can do it myself…with substantially more practice.

I would highly recommend purchasing the paperback version of this book.  The kindle version is hard to read on a kindle as some of the illustration break over several pages.  On a larger tablet, the kindle version is fine.  However, if the reader wishes to use tissue paper to copy the chibi examples to get a head’s start on their own drawing (please don’t judge), a tablet won’t be easy to use. 5 stars!

Thanks to the publisher, Impact Books, and NetGalley for an advanced copy.

There is also a review of a more traditional art instruction book using pencil located here.

Posted in Non-fiction, Teen & Young Adult Tagged with:

Big Book of Drawing
January 17th, 2018 by diane92345

Really two books in one, this book includes a full book on graphite pencil drawing and a second on drawing using colored pencils. 

Only requiring pencils, paper, erasers, blending tortillions and stumps plus spray fixative, the author’s technique creates well shaped images that appear 3-D. The book begins simply with drawing spheres and cylinders and progresses through grid drawing to a great discussion about perspective.

Lee Hammond’s All New Big Book of Drawing is geared toward beginning artists. The author explains the most important ingredient to becoming a full-fledged artist is practice, practice practice. If you are a budding artist interesting in drawing close to photo-realistic pictures of any subject, this book is a good choice. 4 stars.

Thanks to the publisher, North Light Books, and NetGalley for an advanced review copy. This book will be published on January 24, 2018.

Posted in Non-fiction Tagged with: ,