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Successful Drawing Hardcover – May 8 2012
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About the Author
Andrew Loomis was born in 1892. After studying art, he moved to Chicago where he eventually opened his own studio - working in editorial and advertising for most of the top clients of the time, including Kellog's, Coca Cola, Lucky Strike and many others.
He also became renowned as an art teacher and his instructional books on illustration and art are acclaimed classics in the field. He died in 1959.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Compared to other books that try to cover everything, this book focuses on certain aspects of drawing.
There's a great deal of emphasis on perspective and that section is 80 pages, which is half of this 160-page hardcover. At times, it can be quite difficult to follow because there's too many things explained at the same time. The part on drawing figures on different planes and elevation is quite useful. And also the part on common perspective mistakes.
The second half of the book covers lighting. It's stuff like how light rolls of a sphere, cone and cube. The application is more on figures as with the accompanying illustrated examples. There are many useful drawing pointers to take note of.
The book doesn't cover everything, or at least topics I would expect from a drawing book. What's missing are topics such as composition, contour drawings, colours, drawing portraits (dealt in his other books) and drawing techniques like hatching, layering tones, etc. It doesn't cover drawing by eye which deals with proportion, although it is mentioned briefly which can be overlooked easily.
Ultimately, the book is on understanding the fundamentals behind drawings. There isn't any step-by-step instructions to follow along, you learn by copying what's shown.
This is an intermediate book more suited for those with some knowledge of drawing, more specifically for those looking to learning perspective and lighting. If you have the two other Loomis books mentioned above, then you can easily apply what you've learned.
If you're looking to draw something instantly, then I would recommend more elementary beginner books. For perspective, you can try Perspective Made Easy, and Keys to Drawing for drawing in general. I'll also recommend Lessons in Classical Drawing because that book is also about successful drawing.
So again, I wouldn't pass up any of the Loomis books. If nothing else, he has everything you need in art education and can guide you in the right direction for further study. Read carefully what he has to say, study his illustrations thoroughly, apply the knowledge, practice and draw all the time. As for my suggestions, for all other authors to study from, I found them by researching drawing forums. This is your best bet if you still have any kind of trouble. One of the best one's I've found, if not the best, is called CG Society, google it and find tons of information in their general techniques forum section.
By the way, there is a certain order that you should keep in mind when studying the Loomis books. Things will make a lot more sense, with some minor overlap.
Here's the suggested order:
Fun with a Pencil
Successful Drawing / Figure Drawing For All It's Worth / Drawing the Heads and Hands
The Painter's Eye
Now, finally, Titan Books has decided to republish them. I just received Successful Drawing, and I would highly recommend it to anyone who wants to learn or improve the basics of drawing, in particular perspective, light and shadows.
I hope that Titan Books get good sales and continues with the publication of the other Loomis titles, in particular Fun With A Pencil.