Review: Beginner's Guide to Sketching: Characters, Creatures and Concepts

Master the art of drawing with expert advice from pro artists in this guide.

Our Verdict

Beginners may find some of this book challenging, but there's a wealth of value on how to develop your art skills among these pages.

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Review: Beginner’s Guide to Sketching: Characters, Creatures and Concepts

Fans of 3DTotal's CG training books have long been asking for one focusing on old-school graphite. Well, now that call has been answered.

In this 206-page Beginner's Guide to Sketching book, 10 pro artists including Rovina Cai, Justin Gerard, Nick Harris and Rebeca Puebla, take you through how to draw (opens in new tab) the fundamentals, from pencil art (opens in new tab), gesture drawing and finding simple shapes to mastering line quality and shading. The cover doesn't make it obvious, but the book's mainly geared towards the creation of concept/ fantasy art – and that's fine by us!

Review: Beginner’s Guide to Sketching: Characters, Creatures and Concepts

The artists explain how and when to use different sketching materials; share top tips; show you how to draw everything from hands to an alien slave; and set practical exercises. There are also master projects that show how it all gets put together – how to progress from early concepts, through poses, designs and costume elements, to a completed scene.

Despite the title, novices might find much of this too challenging. Yet artists ranging from students right up to advanced level should find much of value here, both in terms of refreshing your core art skills and raising your fantasy concept art to the next level.

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The Verdict
8

out of 10

Beginner’s Guide to Sketching: Characters, Creatures and Concepts

Beginners may find some of this book challenging, but there's a wealth of value on how to develop your art skills among these pages.

Topics
Art
Tom May

Tom May is an award-winning journalist and editor specialising in design, photography and technology. Author of the Amazon #1 bestseller Great TED Talks: Creativity (opens in new tab), published by Pavilion Books, Tom was previously editor of Professional Photography magazine, associate editor at Creative Bloq, and deputy editor at net magazine. Today, he is a regular contributor to Creative Bloq and its sister sites Digital Camera World, T3.com and Tech Radar. He also writes for Creative Boom and works on content marketing projects.