Saturday, June 24, 2017

Foundations of Drawing by Al Gury

book cover
Foundations of Drawing
by Al Gury

ISBN-13: 978-0307987181
Paperback: 224 pages
Publisher: Watson-Guptill
Released: June 13, 2017

Source: Review copy from the publisher through Blogging for Books.

Book Description, Modified from Amazon:
From a leading art instructor at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia, a complete survey of drawing as an art form covering its history, materials, and key techniques.

Foundations of Drawing is a comprehensive and authoritative overview of the history, aesthetics, methods, and materials of the drawing medium. Throughout, clearly defined demonstrations provide easy access to the practice of drawing as well as the history and development of core drawing techniques. Richly illustrated, the book contains reproductions of the finest master drawings from the fifteenth century to the present.

Unlike other drawing instruction books that focus on step-by-step lessons exclusively, Foundations of Drawing provides readers with the context and background to help understand just why these materials and methods are so vital for successful drawing.

My Review:
Foundations of Drawing is an art book about the history, tools, materials, and techniques of drawing. I wish I had this book when I started learning how to draw. My original art instructor and many art books assumed that I already understood what various drawing terms meant or what mediums best worked with what paper. This book is cheap considering it'll save you money by explaining what supplies you really needed for what you want to do.

The book started off with a brief history of drawing, which looked at the various periods to see what styles dominated or changes took place. The author then described the various drawing tools and materials, including how to best use them and what papers or brushes work best with which mediums. This was so helpful and explained why I've felt frustrated at times. He also explained the advantages and disadvantages of the various mediums. He included watercolor and other paints when used in a "drawing" style.

He then covered a wide variety of drawing skills, like how to hold drawing tools; use grids; blend; erase; use line, shape, and hatching; create light and shade, and more. He clearly explained the various terms and how to do the skill. There were illustrations either showing a finished work that used a technique or demonstrating how to do it. A lot of the drawings were of nudes or figures, though he did describe the steps to take to compose and draw still life, interiors and architecture, as well as portraits and figures.

I expect to regularly consult this book until I settle down to a favored medium and style. I'd highly recommend this as a reference book for students and self-taught individuals who are serious about learning to draw. Don't expect a lot of step-by-step drawing projects but rather the basics of how to draw well that you can apply to any project.

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.

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