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The New Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain: The 1999, 3rd Edition [Paperback]

Betty Edwards
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (90 customer reviews)

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Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain: The Definitive, 4th Edition Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain: The Definitive, 4th Edition 4.8 out of 5 stars (8)
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Book Description

Jan. 11 2002

When Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain was first published in 1979, it hit the New York Times bestseller list within two weeks and stayed there for more than a year. In 1989, when Dr. Betty Edwards revised the book, it went straight to the Times list again. Now Dr. Edwards celebrates the twentieth anniversary of her classic book with a second revised edition.

Over the last decade, Dr. Edwards has refined her material through teaching hundreds of workshops and seminars. Truly The New Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain, this edition includes:

  • the very latest developments in brain research
  • new material on using drawing techniques in the corporate world and in education
  • instruction on self-expression through drawing
  • an updated section on using color
  • detailed information on using the five basic skills of drawing for problem solving


Translated into thirteen languages, Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain is the world's most widely used drawing-instruction guide. People from just about every walk of life—artists, students, corporate executives, architects, real estate agents, designers, engineers—have applied its revolutionary approach to problem solving. The Los Angeles Times said it best: Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain is "not only a book about drawing, it is a book about living. This brilliant approach to the teaching of drawing . . . should not be dismissed as a mere text. It emancipates."


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About the Author

Betty Edwards is professor emeritus of art at California State University in Long Beach, California. She is the author of The New Drawing on the Right Side of the, the world's most widely used drawing instructional, which has been translated into thirteen foreign languages with U.S. sales of almost three million copies. She speaks regularly at universities, art schools, and companies, including the Walt Disney Corporation and the Apple Corporation.

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First Sentence
DRAWING IS A CURIOUS PROCESS, so intertwined with seeing that the two can hardly be separated. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Mind's eye March 29 2012
By L. Power HALL OF FAME TOP 10 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
I bought the original book years ago, and it really improved my drawing skills. I believe people who are blocked from drawing well will get the most from this book. More accomplished artists may benefit as well by understanding better how the process works.

It shows you how to look at things differently, and gives you techniques to enable you to bypass your left (logical) brain, and access your right brain, (your subconscious mind), hence the title.

Instead of using left brain- right brain theory to describe this, in my view the more correct description would be to learn to access your subconscious mind which functions at a deeper level, while reducing the way in which your conscious mind interferes with the creative process.

Your brain has four levels of consciousness, beta which is normal waking state, alpha which is a relaxed meditative state such as when you are about to go to sleep, theta which is a deeper state associated with creativity and light sleep, and delta which is deep sleep.

Normally, your brain shows shows some activity at all these levels. Artists and other creative people are able to access the creative mental state more easily.

Here is an example of how the process works.

If you try to draw a chair you may have a definite idea in your logical mind of how a chair should be, so when you draw you are thinking 4 legs, a seat and a back. You know all the legs are the same length, and therefore you may draw that way.

This can interfere with you doing a good drawing, because each leg from an artistic viewpoint is longer or shorter depending on the distance from your eye, so you have to learn how to use your vision to see it differently.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I would have to agree with many artists when they say this book doesn't make you Vincent Van Gogh just in five days. Basically this is only for improving your skills or maybe brushing up on them a bit (like I am). No, it isn't for skilled artists, who already know how to see things when they draw. Like many had previously said before me "The Natural Way to Draw: A Working Plan for Art Study" is the only book I would recommend for "serious" artists who take Art (with a capital A, as Dr. Edwards has said) as something they want to excel in and maybe make a career of.
As much as I have to admit that Dr. Edwards is a little full of it, her way of instructing one to shift to the right hemisphere of the brain for full creativity is a great one. It's not only for drawing, it's for expanding your way of thinking. Part of the reason why I got this book wasn't only to improve my skills, but to find a way somehow to improve on academic standards. And not just my education, but the way of seeing a different way.
I don't agree with her stating that one would be a wonderful drawer after studying exercises and the literature she provides, but I do believe this whole entire book is the first step. After reading it, you have a choice of continuing on to more serious books like "The Natural Way to Draw" and taking art courses or you can just take what you learn to sketch when you are stressed and need a way to escape from reality for just a while.
My final analysis: I think a lot of people have already said this but I will say it again: Don't expect to be a intermediate artist and learn to draw like a professional. If you have your revelations about this book, here's a clue: GO TO YOUR LIBRARY AND CHECK IT OUT FIRST.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good introductory book Dec 11 2013
By student
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book has taught me to observe carefully more than anything else. It has honestly caused me to observe everything around me with more detail.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing book! Jan. 20 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a fantastic step-by-step drawing guide. Anyone without drawing experience could learn and improve by following the simple exercises.
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5.0 out of 5 stars This is the reference! July 28 2012
By Zandhor
Format:Paperback
All you need to know about drawing is in here. If you want to buy one book about drawing, buy this one!
It is brilliant, simple and addictive. If you think you do not know how to draw, you will at the end of this book. This is guaranteed!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars indescribable July 8 2004
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Anyone who has anything bad to say about this book is
lost in space. There is no person on earth who cannot improve
after doing the projects in this book. Just one thing I would like to note: Try to take this class with a teacher so you don't give up in the middle. Once you get over the muscle pain in your right brain you'll thank yourself a million times over that you did it. You will see things you have never
noticed before and when you show people your drawings their jaws
will drop on the floor. One more thing: Never have a coffee (with caffeine) before doing the projects. You have to be very
calm and get into the drawing like a musician has to get into
the music.
I am thrilled that I am almost finished with the course, and
now I can draw almost ANY object I see.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I started my art experience with this book, and to it I give much credit. For me, it was like a "light switch" had been turned on. One day I could not draw, the next day I could. I did take the lessons seriously, and completed the book. If you are new, this book delivers on it's promises. It doesn't matter if the right/left part is correct or not, the fact is - the methods work. There are many other things to master, but the ability to draw correctly is what separates real artists from the fake ones, of which there are many. Drawing is the foundation. If you want to learn how to draw, this book will take you where you want to go faster than any other. Later, when you are in that expensive oil painting class, and 11 out of the 15 students are stuck because they can't draw, you will be thankful that you started off with this book. You will be one of those who can at the very least render your subject correctly.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Con and Pro
The book's underlying theory about the two hemispheres of the brain and their respective functions is simplistic to the point of being silly, but the drawing exercises are useful... Read more
Published on May 19 2011 by James Marina
2.0 out of 5 stars New Drawing On The Right Side Of The Brain
This book is an interesting read but if you are looking for real direction on learning to draw there is too little instruction and a whole lot of philosophy.
Published on July 27 2009 by Carol Carruthers
5.0 out of 5 stars A phenomenal instructional book used by many professionals!
This a book is used my many professionals and is one of the best instructional tools in learning the art of drawing. Read more
Published on June 27 2009 by Laura Fernandez
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Book for Beginners
I have just started drawing and lathart, and this is the book I needed to get on the right track
Published on Jan. 1 2008 by Artist
3.0 out of 5 stars Beginner's Book
This would be a good book for someone who really has no experience with drawing. I don't think she had to keep trying to prove her methods with scientific eveidence, though, it... Read more
Published on Oct. 5 2005 by Annie
3.0 out of 5 stars almost, betty.
no need to repeat the very thorough description that liquidbabe gave. i put this book down five different times vowing not to finish the rest. Read more
Published on Sept. 25 2005 by fredhedd
1.0 out of 5 stars [80% text / 20 % illustration ] & an historic falsehood
"The New Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain" by Betty Edwards
The great falsehood here is that by using some drawings from the Rennaissance, Edwards would have... Read more
Published on July 4 2004 by Bruce Bain
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