Thursday, December 26, 2013

How To Draw What You See by Rudy De Reyna

book cover
How To Draw What You See
by Rudy De Reyna

ISBN-13: 9780823023752
Paperback: 178 pages
Publisher: Watson-Guptill
Released: 1972; September 1, 1996

Source: Bought through

Book Description, Modified from Back Cover:
How to Draw What You See shows artists how to recognize the basic shape of an object—cube, cylinder, cone, or sphere—and use that shape to draw the object, no matter how much detail it contains. Part One discusses the fundamentals of drawing. There are clear, concise and lavishly illustrated projects. Each project is arranged so that one is slightly more complex than the one before. In Part Two, the author explains the use of media not usually described in a drawing book--wash, opaque, acrylic, and ink. He provides exercises to help the student gain proficiency in handling each of them.

My Review:
How To Draw What You See is a basic-level drawing book. I don't draw, but a girl that I mentor spends a lot of time drawing. I thought it'd be fun to take drawing lessons together, but the instructor isn't very good at explaining WHY we are doing the various exercises that he gives to us. I noticed that he was basically following the lesson plan in this book, so I bought a copy. The book does a much better job of explaining the concepts than my art lessons instructor, and I have the feeling that I could have learned just as much by using this book instead of taking lessons. (Hopefully you have access to a better instructor.)

Part One of this book covers 19 lessons which are progressive projects that build skill and confidence. He covered drawing basic shapes, perspective, shading, tones, drawing still life (indoors), drawing outdoors (which covered the differences from still life more than how to draw trees, etc.), and drawing people and faces. I wasn't as impressed with the instruction in the drawing people section, but it certainly gave some basics to start from.

Part Two gave the basics on how to use watercolor, opaque watercolor, acrylic, and ink. He gives projects using black, greys, and white paints. This section had less instruction, but I think it's mainly intended to introduce the idea of "drawing" using other media.

Overall, I felt that this book was very helpful and developed my skill at creating realistic-looking drawings. I'd recommend it to those wishing to learn this skill.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

Excerpt: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.