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A question for a2k's artist population....

 
 
Reply Fri 2 Aug, 2013 08:06 pm
Can anyone suggest a good and accessible book for drawing for beginners? I'm interested in starting/experimenting on a webcomic.
 
View best answer, chosen by tsarstepan
Ragman
 
  2  
Reply Fri 2 Aug, 2013 08:18 pm
@tsarstepan,
We'll have you speak with Goldman10.

Seriously...I would recommend...the first book of the series....first was published in 1979

Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain

New version:

The New Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 2 Aug, 2013 08:20 pm
@Ragman,
Thanks. I just reserved a copy from the Brooklyn Public Library.
Ragman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 2 Aug, 2013 08:22 pm
@tsarstepan,
That was easy! Hopefully they won't have to borrow from another borough.
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  2  
Reply Fri 2 Aug, 2013 08:46 pm
@tsarstepan,
I was going to suggest the same book as Ragman. It's a good drawing book.

I do question it's value for drawing comics though. I suppose it will depend on what style you're after.

Stan Lee has written a couple of books about how to draw comics but I think the gold standard is Will Eisner's books. I had a couple of friends who drew comic books who swore by them (I'm not too familiar with him myself). They might be worth a look.
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Sat 3 Aug, 2013 06:46 am
@boomerang,
Fundamentals can be learned from a series of DVD/s that focus around the following theme .(Im not sure of titles its been several years since Id seen them)
The DVDs were developed from old VHS tapes that are about "Drawing Comic Book Chracaters the MARVEL COMICS Way" (Or something like that.

Once you establish the fundamentals (and be careful to spend time on figure drawing because ACTION is what you need to convey and action is always tough with the figure because you have to develop a skill in rendering called FORESHORTENING (which is nothing but the recognition that you are drawing on a @D plane and items of anatomy that are coming towards you, have to be squashed down on front view so as to appear real). Its not a difficult concept but it must be learned well and early.

THEN you need some training in perspective. There are several entire volumes on that subject and all of my training was by practice and teacher instruction so youre gonna be at a bit of a disadvantage (Why not the art students league for some lessons?)

THEN, the very last thing youre gonna need is to develop a STYLE that is yours and yours alone (unless you want to copy)
The style of MARVEL comics had always been uniform, dynamic, and, to me, boring and uncreative. My personal all time favorite STYLEMEISTER was FRANK FRAZETTA. He has put together several books of comics and comic art that are still popular . I see the large bound Frazetta compilations under titles of TERROR, or CREEPY COMICS.

You should also go and try to find the old EC Comic of the 1940's. They had simplified the drawings to just the critical elements of the subject in each panel, (whereas MARVEL Comics always has every panel loaded with action and silly phrases that connote noises and such)

I toyed with doing comic journals for a lab I was working for out west years ago. It focused on geologists doing stupid things and recording them by exaggeration for our lab news letter . It led yo a brief career in San Fran doing environmental and political cartoons. It got to be demanding cause they always wanted more stuff and wanted me to delve into advert art. I had a very good job and didn't need the hassle.
You gotta recognize deadlines as controlling ALL your life

You will hate Editors for the opinionated know nothings that they are (except for a few who will guide your career-or truncate it as was in my career) .

YOU WILL HAVE FUN but it will b full of danger that is mostly swlf imposed (if you are a full-on procrastinator). YOU MUST learn to work jst like any writer . You must devote X hours a day to your ideas and execution. You will journal your ass off by keeping notebooks (or a think pad) at your side to record these ideas that just flash into your head while at dinner or walking. I had to learn that I need about 2 hours a day to develop and execute the work and I had a Thursday nd SUNDAY night deadline for each week.

SO , in summary, I consider th following the most important areas in developing your skills as a cartoonist. (Business skills NOT SO MUCH--I got fucked over several times by shifty publishers)
BUT you need to be good at


FIGURE DRAWING IN ACTION

PESRPECTIVE

DEVELOP A STYLE (some of these blog comics I call "refrigerator art" cause the art is so bad. Don't let that happen)

STORY-DO NOT attempt to write so much text in a panel so that the whole thing becomes like a spendi post.

STORY-keep it focused and part of your style. (I used to have a little character like a wizened old miner ) Who provided ALL the verbiage in a panel. He had a balloon with his thoughts and the cartoon was a visual of what he said. THAT WAS MY STYLE AT THE TIME.

Good Luck. Its a changing art form and the web is sucking up lotsa good (And very bad ) cartoonists. I don't like MANGA STYLE, its formulaic and cookie cutter art. I am a card carrying devotee of Frank Frazetta and EC comics (of the 40s and 50s)
farmerman
 
  4  
Reply Sat 3 Aug, 2013 09:12 am
@farmerman,
turns out you can download the "Drawing Cartoons The Marvel Comics Way" . Its on youtube and its free. Its a 2 parter and is a good reference for figures and pespective
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Mon 5 Aug, 2013 05:23 pm
@farmerman,
man, your ADD is wose than mine. You haven't even responded to your own query. Find another squirrel to chase?
0 Replies
 
tomr
  Selected Answer
 
  3  
Reply Mon 5 Aug, 2013 07:02 pm
@tsarstepan,
Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain by Betty Edwards.

Here's how to get started in a nutshell:
Practice by drawing 3D objects like spheres, ellipsoids, cylinders, cubes, pyramids, for example. Then start to take away or add to those objects and combine them. Finally construct common objects out of those simple 3D shapes. Eventually you will get good enough you will quickly sketch an outline of the simple 3d object as you build up a more complicated object like a human hand (cylinders = fingers, ellipsoid = fingertips, etc..). The shading is a combination of the shading of all the individual simpler objects. It is something that takes a lot of practice to really get good at.

I just noticed this book was already recommended.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Aug, 2013 07:20 pm
I'm older than sin and still like Nicolaides.
I'm not sure that some of his exercises would be off base re comic drawing. Some of his stuff is quite freeing. The thing is not to just obey his many instructions. I did the non obeying, Nicolaides lite.

Alternately, Bob Mankoff in the NYer has a blog on cartoons, not entirely though seemingly opposite comics as such. He's very keyed into humor but I doubt is a slug about drawing idiosyncratically but well.

What I miss in the NYer now is that he or they used to list those who did the cartoons, and have links to their art blogs - anyway, I can't just find those now on the website, but they may be available elsewhere online. Well, they are likely still on the website and I'm too dense to suss them out. I just recently resubscribed.
0 Replies
 
JLNobody
 
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Reply Mon 5 Aug, 2013 07:45 pm
Farmerman, I want to praise your generosity. Your essay on drawing is very realistic and constructive. You must be almost as old as I as suggested by the breadth of your background. What haven't you done?
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Aug, 2013 08:35 pm
@JLNobody,
Ill be 63 later ths year. Thank you < I always enjoy talking about methods in art work. I miss the discussions we used to have over at Abuzz. (Even when people got judgmental about each others choices). Remember 499? (I believe that was his handle)
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Aug, 2013 08:37 pm
I do, but not to well describe.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Aug, 2013 08:48 pm
@ossobuco,
I was fascinated at his knowledge and passion about students from the CAI and abstract expressionists in general. He didn't like Andrew Wyeth and he and I used to mix it up (where I learned several words he had for me)> BUT, like many others who are passionate about stuff, it seemed he never really could stay angry for long.
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Aug, 2013 08:02 am
@tomr,
Though it was already recommended in another post, I really appreciate your description/summary on why this particular book will be helpful.

This is the kind of instruction book I will need to help me develop my doodling skills into full blown drawing skills. Thanks Tomr for the seconding of that book. I just reserved the copy from the Brooklyn Public Library.
Ragman
 
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Reply Tue 6 Aug, 2013 11:26 am
@tomr,
yup.
0 Replies
 
tomr
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Aug, 2013 05:22 pm
@tsarstepan,
My description was more from how I learned to draw. The technique I described is a common technique. It isn't really the main focus of the book. But there are a lot of good exercises. Especially the exercise in drawing a photograph of Einstein upside. There are several good chapters that focus on key ideas like negative spaces, drawing in perspective, portrait drawing, and realistic shading. All of this could be combined with the method I described to improve the drawings (the method I gave is very common and you could probably find a book that focuses on that too).

Whenever I draw purely from imagination, I always construct things out of 3d objects as I said before. This gives an easy way to construct a realistic looking 3d space without an actual scene in front of you. The shading of objects is just as important. I hope you enjoy the book. Good luck with the comic and I hope to see it when its done.
0 Replies
 
 

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