160 pages (March 2006), paperback
Sterling Publishing Co., NY
MY RATING: 5 / 5
Next best thing to a personal instructor
Whether you are a budding artist on the cusp of exploring drawing for the first time, or at a more advanced level and looking to embellish your proficiency, Art of Still Life Drawing makes accurate still life drawings uncomplicated and approachable for every level of sketcher. The book’s clear, precise step-by-step illustrations and explanations demonstrate the logic behind drawing, and thoroughly examine the fundamentals of attaining an amazingly vibrant and expressive composition. The building blocks of creating an accurate and successful still life, presented in coherent progression, will make even the most unskilled artist feel comfortable with delving into a more complex piece of art, and launch the emerging artists off on a great journey of creating something they’ve never attempted before.
Chapters include well-written and easy to follow instructions on the initial basic line drawing, perspective, incorporating light and shadow depending on the shape of the object; discussion of shapes, qualities and subjects of still life; amazingly informative instructions on rending the texture of an object (glass, metal, pottery, textiles, etc.); demonstration of creating accurate reflections and representing transparency; exploring the composition of the still life; and step-by-step studies of drawings from beginning to end, using different techniques and drawing implements.
Each comprehensive section of this lovely book is color coded for quick and easy reference at your fingertips, and a comprehensive index is also included at the back of the book for specific topic look-up. The reader will enjoy the sequential how-to’s in each chapter, with beautifully informative illustrations and understandable descriptive text, which offer helpful hints and different perspectives to each technique explored. Different drawing equipment and tools are discussed in achieving distinctive looks and renderings. The book also leaves room for coupling its instructions with the utilization of one’s own individual style, techniques and ideas, aiding in the creation of a still life that is anything but dull.
As a self-taught artist who is constantly endeavoring to better her drawing and painting skills, I can honestly recommend Art of Still Life Drawing as one of the better-end instructional drawing books available. It is the next best thing to having a real-life instructor by your side, guiding you through every step. With endless possible variations, Still Life Drawing offers artists, of any echelon, the ideal instruction for creating - and perfecting - still life compositions. Its inspirational lessons cover all the crucial precursors for capturing a realistic image, and is a must-have for any artist.
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- reviewed for Sterling Publishing Co., NY