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10 Must-Read Best Drawing Books

 

 

1. Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain by Betty Edwards

This is the most widely used drawing textbook in the world (it’s translated into seventeen languages). The book tells you that anyone is capable of drawing well with proper education. It teaches you how to better perceive and understand the world that surrounds you, hence improving the way you represent what you are drawing. It improves the way you observe the perceptual relationships between the objects and areas you are drawing, making your work more realistic and lifelike. It’s a must-read for beginners and hobbyists, as well as for professional artists, illustrators and animators. It is extremely useful and it gives you highly instructional exercises and case studies which will inevitably improve your drawing skills. Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain is definitely one of the best drawing books ever written.

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2. Drawing Course by Charles Bargue and Jean-Léon Gérôme (better known as The Bargue Book)

This is a reprint of a late 19th century drawing course. This book is considered to be the best compilation of drawing exercises ever made. It’s an essential tool for people who wish to study art seriously. It is comprised of many linear life-drawings, master-copies and cast drawings which serve as practical exercises. They get more advanced as you go along. The only downside of this must-have drawing book for artists is that it costs a lot, but the investment is very much worth it.

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3. The Practice and Science of Drawing by Harold Speed

This is one of the few books from the beginning of the 20th century that has continued to be read and recommended by teachers, students, professionals and amateurs in the graphic arts. Speed gives us his view on the historical versus the scientific in drawing, his theory against precise definition in art. The book itself is an amazing textbook that covers subjects from studies of line drawing and mass drawing to balance, proportion, improving your visual memory, procedures, materials and more.

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4. How to Draw What You See by Rudy De Reyna

This is one of my favorite drawing books (it’s also included in the recommended books for animators). It gives you exactly what the title says. It helps you draw things as you see them which is the quintessential skill for any artist. When it comes to books that teach you how to draw, this is a must-have textbook.

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5. Perspective Made Easy by Ernest R. Norling

Drawing perspective accurately is a skill every artist, illustrator and animator must possess, and this book teaches you how to master it easily in a short period of time. It’s comprised of over 250 illustrations that teach you the concepts of different kinds of perspective. It’s easy to use, concise, and has immediately applicable exercises. It covers subjects such as creating shadows, placing figures and objects and much more.

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6. Composition: A Series of Exercises in Art Structure for the Use of Students and Teachers by Arthur Wesley Dow

This book is full of useful drawing exercises and it covers composition practice in detail. This is the only book that focuses on improving composition skills, an essential part of learning how to draw.

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7. Classic Human Anatomy: The Artist’s Guide to Form, Function, and Movement by Valerie L. Winslow

This amazing book provides a simple approach to the complex subject of human anatomy. It has three major sections (skeletal form, muscular form and movement) which are made easy to understand using simply-written text, diagrams, drawings and more than 800 illustrations. There are many books on the study of human anatomy, but this one has proven to be the most useful one. It gives you all the tools to master the drawing of human form.

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8. Secrets to Drawing Realistic Faces by Carrie Stuart Parks

This book was written by an FBI-trained artist. It’s one of the best manuals for drawing the human face ever written. Easy to follow, simply written advice backed up with a lot of images and exercises. It teaches you how to master proportions, shading, details and shapes.

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9. Drawing the Landscape by Chip Sullivan

This book is one of the best manuals for architectural drawing and precise representations of outdoor and indoor spaces and landscapes, which is something every artist should know how to do. It offers priceless help when it comes to drawing realistic and accurate spaces.

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10. Science of Creature Design: understanding animal anatomy by Terryl Whitlatch

This is one of the most fun books I’ve ever read. Along with covering the principles of animal anatomy, it provides countless ideas for character design. One of the best drawing books when it comes to getting your imagination going. The author shares valuable techniques mastered during years of working for Lucasfilm and Walt Disney Feature Animation.

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Click Here for a List of 8 Best Drawing Pens

8 best drawing pens

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