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Thread: Need help on which book to study from

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    Unhappy Need help on which book to study from

    I need help in choosing a book to study from since I have a bit many (correct me if I'm wrong) and leaving me undecided on what to learn from.

    Ones I own
    Andrew Loomis's Fun with a Pencil(was barreling through that till I started to go figure drawing)
    Creative Illustration
    Figure drawing for all it's worth
    Successful Drawing
    Drawing the Hands and Feet
    Drawing Lessons from the Great Masters
    Atlas of Human Anatomy for the Artist
    Norlings Perspective made Easy
    Bridgman's Life Drawing

    Ones Borrowed from Library
    Anatomy from the Great Masters
    The Artist's Complete Guide to DRAWING THE HEAD
    Master Class in Figure Drawing

    Which one do I start with?

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    How about try this, its way more productive for you and less annoying for us. Start drawing something- anything- and when you get stuck use one of those books to find the answer ton how to make your drawing better. All that reading and drawing is bound to get you somewhere faster than worrying about which book to choose. Really...

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    Arguably, Successful Drawing would be the Intro Level Loomis Book, if not Fun With A Pencil.

    But, READ all the Loomis Books. . .

    . . . and all the Hale books, too!

    You'll get more out of reading and thinking about the whole sets of Loomis and Hale than you will just trying to blindly draw your way through any one book.

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    All of 'em, they are great books. I agree Successful Drawing would be a good place to start IMO, but there is no right answer to this question. Everyone does things differently.

    "If you're going through hell, keep going". Winston Churchill

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    Throw them all in the air above your head. The first one that hits your head first you study from. It's the one that knocked some sense into you

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    Quote Originally Posted by dpaint View Post
    How about try this, its way more productive for you and less annoying for us. Start drawing something- anything- and when you get stuck use one of those books to find the answer ton how to make your drawing better. All that reading and drawing is bound to get you somewhere faster than worrying about which book to choose. Really...
    dpaint is right, but he could have gotten the same point across without being such an elitist dick about it.

    The Loomis books are really the only ones that have an "order," but considering that you probably have the ambition to get through them all at some point anyway, I would say just crack open whichever one sounds the most interesting to you at the time. There aren't any rules about how you can read these books; you may find it most useful to jump around from book to book finding what you need and comparing techniques.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prophet View Post
    dpaint is right, but he could have gotten the same point across without being such an elitist dick about it.
    Maybe...but if someone has all the books they can simply skim through all of them and figure it out

    It's like the guy with a newspaper asking the guy next to him "what is the weather going to be like"

    If a person can't even measure up to that simple task, drawing is probably the least of their worries.

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    I don't see how dpaint was being an "elitist dick." His reply wasn't nice but it wasn't particularly mean either. It's the truth. :/

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    I thought dpaint's comment was dead on and wish I had said it myself. I was going to be even more smart ass and suggest that by all means DO NOT let those books come in contact with each other. Keep them in separate rooms if necessary! Read the first page of each book, then seccond...maintaining the rotation...and so on...

    In other words...it doesn't fucking matter! Just draw, read, draw more, read more...that's pretty much it until you die.

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    The most important book is your sketchbook...

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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffX99 View Post
    I thought dpaint's comment was dead on and wish I had said it myself. I was going to be even more smart ass and suggest that by all means DO NOT let those books come in contact with each other. Keep them in separate rooms if necessary! Read the first page of each book, then seccond...maintaining the rotation...and so on...

    In other words...it doesn't fucking matter! Just draw, read, draw more, read more...that's pretty much it until you die.
    Well, I have to say, I have long struggled with the same issue. There are so many books around that it can be bewildering, and then on many message boards, there are highly accomplished but somewhat fanatic artists around who can be even more confusing. I have on many occasions received mutually exclusive pieces of advice from two or more different artists, and they all swore that if I did not follow their specific advice I'd be ruined.

    Anyway, my advice to the OP is the same as yours: just draw, and don't worry. Read around widely. Try a disciplined approach if you have the energy, or just play around joyously with all sorts of stuff. It matters little. Improvement comes with practice, and within as little as twenty years you could have some skills... ;-)

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    This is why I wish I could hit people on the internet.

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    Well the overall thing is the reason people are telling you to stop worrying and just draw is that, no matter how much advice we give - you're going to make the same mistakes anyways. Whether you didn't listen and did it anyways, or you did listen but the understanding that comes with knowledge and practice isn't there yet.

    There will be things that can be "fast road to ruin" (abusing the filters in PS), Swearing by a Christopher Hart book etc... and yes we'll tell you or you'll find out. But you're going to have to make those mistakes. You'll learn from them. Even if burn and dodge in Photoshop seemed like a good idea at the time, as you develop you'll realize why someone told you not to use it. If you worked with more than 3 colors to make good new "mix" and fouled it up, you'll know.

    So then one wonders, well why even have a forum? The information is there so you can apply it. You'll realize why something is a mistake. You might find a technique that clicks with you. It also gives you motivation. One of the things although I know it does happen, but rarely see is people telling you to stop drawing. In fact no matter how negative the tone gets, it's the opposite. More posts here tell you to keep drawing!

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    Right, guys, as I always say in my classes, "There's no such thing as a stupid question, ... only stupid students".

    But seriously, sketchim, you shouldn't take any of the above complaints personally. You've stumbled into this forum at a rather ugly moment in its history. Just back away quietly and try another forum. Quite a few people here need a holiday.

    Fun with a Pencil was an excellent start, and after that Figure Drawing for all it's Worth will probably help most at this stage with the life drawing you've begun. The two books actually by Hale (Drawing Lessons and Masterclass, not his student' book Anatomy Lessons) are essential, but apparently read like rocket science to some people, so they'd best come after you're familiar with at least those two Loomis books. I'd keep Peck's Atlas of Human Anatomy alongside you as a reference as you work through the Hale books (and later Bridgman) so that you can look up any unfamilar anatomical terms; then when you're ready you can work through it as a whole. For perspective, if you work through Norling's book and Loomis' Successful Drawing together, you may find that one will make clear anything that you find confusing in the other.

    I know it might be tedious to answer that question for the millionth time, but it wasn't the student's millionth time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by briggsy@ashtons View Post
    Right, guys, as I always say in my classes, "There's no such thing as a stupid question, ... only stupid students".

    But seriously, sketchim, you shouldn't take any of the above complaints personally. You've stumbled into this forum at a rather ugly moment in its history. Just back away quietly and try another forum. Quite a few people here need a holiday...
    I can take it.
    (I am gonna just back away quietly and go draw)

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    There ya go...always best to discover the answers yourself anyway.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffX99 View Post
    There ya go...always best to discover the answers yourself anyway.
    "Look at nature, work independently and solve your own problems,"

    --Winslow Homer

    "The problem with quotes on the internet is that they are not always accurate."

    --Abraham Lincoln

    ;-)

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