Drawing Realistic Textures in Pencil Paperback – Mar 15 1999
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From Library Journal
Contrary to the publicity on this book, it doesn't contain techniques "so easy that anyoneAfrom doodler to advanced artistAcan master in minutes." This is instead a highly challenging manual on achieving effects close to photographic with little more than a sharp pencil. Hillberry, an artist and teacher, offers splendid demonstrations on creating the look of metal, wood, hair, and even cracked glass. To his credit, Hillberry admits one needs to have already grasped shape, proportion, and perspective before approaching this level of realism. Highly recommended for collections that need more than the basics.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
About the Author
Hillberry has taught many one day mini-workshops at art fairs and art stores.
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Top Customer Reviews
Hillberry begins by introducing us to various materials - graphite pencils, charcoal pencils, carbon pencils, types of erasers, blending tools, types of paper, and other miscellaneous items that can prove helpful - and describes the use and effect of each. He goes on to offer tips on choosing a composition, using light for different effects, using different pencil strokes, blending techniques, layering media, masking, and other helpful methods.
The bulk of the book contains instructions on achieving realism when rendering different types of objects: metal, eyes, human hair, glass, broken glass, wood, leather, barbed wire, clothing, and fur. He even offers instructions on little details such as knots in wood, protruding nailheads, etc. At the end he talks about how to put all these methods together into a complete composition, and gives tips on working from photographs. I have not yet tried all of Hillberry's techniques, but the ones I have used have helped me immensely. I would highly recommend this book to any intermediate to advanced level artist.
Seriously, though, this is one of the best how-to books I've ever read. Hillberry sets out to do, and does, exactly what his title says it's going do. I can't imagine someone working with this book and not getting something valuable from it. The author's prose style is like his drawing style, very clear and straight ahead. It's not verbose or vague and it's not too terse either. In chapters 1 and 2 he describes the basic tools and general methods of using abrasive media (not ust pencils but powdered graphite, charcoal, graphic blocks etc.). Then he moves on to some tutorials, well chosen to explain the problems of rendering general types of things - metal, wood, he human eye... There are many little gems within the tutorial that will reinforce the general technical points in chapter 2. Like all how-to books there is kind of a jump involved, a certain point where to the naive (most of the market for how-to books, probably) it seems like the author goes from point a, b, c... to point r. That's inevitable. How could it not be? If this stuff was easy, then everybody could do it. Drawing is not easy, but it's the most direct means of creating art, an irreplaceable core skill, useful to painters and sculptors as much as anyone else, and potentially a wonderful end in itself (think about it... think what Raphael and Michaelangelo did with a pencil; look at Henry Moore's drawings, look at... no, there's too many great works of art that are drawings to even consider listing them).
This book can help you with your drawing even if you're not a realist. Highly recommended.
Another advantage of the book is an introduction to drawing tools and mediums, which is very detailed, also.
I personally liked the approach of the author, he's always giving more than one way to achieve some realistic texture and everything he wrote is an advice or a recommendation, while he's calling the reader to experiment alone, also.
Very detailed and very useful book. Recommended!
Very well photographed, Hillberry gives detailed, progressive steps of many of his drawings and is very forthcoming about the techniques he uses to get his results. Hillberry's work is photo-realistic, but even if that is not your goal he spends the first third of the book discussing how to develop the skill necessary to create the even, shifting tones of graphite vital to effective pencil work. The photorealistic sessions are important for everyone as they hone your awareness of what you are seeing and your ability to relay it. His finished examples are beautiful and inspiring.
I love pencil, and there isn't a better book on the topic out there (after 15 years of collecting, I may just have them all). If you feel the same way, get this book. Then quit shopping and get back to your studio and work.
PS--Another interesting book is Robert Zappalorti's "Drawing Sharp Focus Still Lifes" (Watson-Guptill) but it is out of print and you will have to search hard to find it. I feel Hillberry's book is superior, but it's always instructive to see how different artists approach their work.
Good luck, draw hard.
Most recent customer reviews
very informative and interesting. I found this entire book to be very helpful and fasinating. Will be using many of the helpful hints.Published on April 30 2014 by Lorraine P. Cribbin
This highly informational book includes content that most others are missing. The 'master of pencil' shares numerous realistic drawing techniques.Published on Feb. 4 2014 by beantag
Poor methodology, poor examples. Very technical and the artist content is missing. This book offer few interest and by the way, is not stimulant for learning.Published on June 14 2013 by Hélène Mondou
I love this book. It has amazing pictures done in pencil. It is almost impossible to believe that these are done in pencil. Read morePublished on April 23 2013 by Budding Artist
This guy really knows his stuff. The book is excellent and shows how to go about mixing charcoal, graphite and carbon for different textures. Read morePublished on Jan. 28 2013 by Amazon Customer
This book had everything I was looking for. He gave detailed instruction consistantly so after several projects I started to see the pattern of how and why he chose a medium for a... Read morePublished on Aug. 10 2011 by Jan
This book was recommended to me by an artist as one of the best, and it truly is. It has helped me achieve more realistic textures in my drawing.Published on March 9 2009 by A. Avoine
It is easy to find books that try to teach you how to draw, but this book goes way beyond that. If you need something beyond the basics, I highly recommend this book! Read morePublished on April 21 2004 by Tamie L Bloom
I am a beginner drawer and find that this book is a must-have. I think that everyone, beginners and pros alike, will learn something valuable from Hillberry's book. Read morePublished on Oct. 24 2003