Archive for category Author: Christopher Hart

How to Draw Dogs & Cats from Simple Templates || Christopher Hart

Christopher Hart is always good value and his many figure drawing books have proved deservedly popular. Turning his attention to the animal world, his straightforward approach will get you quickly on the road to success with what can be a tricky subject.

The book does what it says on the tin. The simple shapes really are simple, being mainly circles and ovals with variations on that theme. Put a few of those together and, before you know where you are, you have a recognisable outline. A little detail, some manipulation and a modicum of shading later, and there’s an entirely realistic dog or cat. You can accommodate smooth or rough fur, long or short ears and even a wide variety of facial expressions.

Whether you’re just starting out or part of the way along and starting to feel lost, this is a simple guide that will give you confidence from page one.

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Figure It Out! Workbook || Christopher Hart

Christopher Hart’s simplified method of drawing figures is based around simple shapes and lines that allow you to re-create any pose quickly and easily. This spiral-bound workbook provides the initial example, with a short explanation on the upper page and then a dot-grid below for you to copy it. Giving you points of reference makes sure that you retain all the proportions throughout for a perfect result every time.

The whole system is one of the best explanations of figure drawing around and should have you working with confidence in short order. This workbook is a welcome addition to the canon. It bills itself as “ a complete figure-drawing class in one simple workbook” and I wouldn’t argue with that.

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Amazing Girls || Christopher Hart

Let’s not hang about. This is the estimable Christopher Hart’s guide to Anime female figures. It’s a pretty specialised art form and I don’t think I can suggest that even a conventional artist would gain something, as is sometimes the case with Manga. However, if Anime is your thing, Christopher works his usual magic.

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Sketchits! Faces & Fashion || Christopher Hart

The always entertaining and informative Christopher Hart is back with a simple guide to drawing clothed figures. “More than 7 million books sold”, the cover proclaims and it’s not hard to see why. Christopher manages to simplify everything and to be elementary without talking down to the reader.

“Got Color? Just add lines”, the blurb tells us, adding that it’s “introducing an entirely new approach to drawing”. Well, up to a point, but the idea is ingenious – paint the basic shape, then add facial features, hair, accessories and detail such as folds and shadows. “Jump-start your creativity”.

If you want a simple guide to drawing figures, this would fit the bill nicely. If you don’t, you might find that the absence of complication encourages you to add your own simplification.

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Figure It Out! Drawing Essential Poses || Christopher Hart

Christopher Hart is the absolute master of the simplified guide to figure drawing. In this remarkably comprehensive guide, he takes a number of typical postures and breaks them down into a series of simple shapes that make them both easy to understand and to replicate. Part of the secret of his simplicity is to deal with only one thing at a time. When, for example, figures are clothed, the clothing is simple and little more than a few lines – it doesn’t distract from or complicate the main message and won’t detain you for more than a few seconds. While you’re at it, you might want to notice that folds, creases and hangs can be delineated in just one or two marks, though.

As well as shape and proportion, Christopher hints at perspective, but without going into a great deal of detail – this isn’t a book about perspective. He does, though, look at three-quarter as well as front and back views and explains how to portray depth – his figures are always more than just two-dimensional cut-outs.

If you’re new to figure drawing, or finding yourself bogged down in self-imposed complications, this is a brilliant life-saver.

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Figure Drawing Hints & Tips || Christopher Hart

I’ve long been a fan of Christopher Hart’s simplified approach to demonstrating figure drawing. His way of translating block diagrams into realistic representations is easy to follow and takes much of the mystique out of the process of drawing people.

There is a multitude basic introductions to drawing the human figure, many of them truly excellent and a lot that are elementary enough to deal with the process of getting started. Some also go on to get you onto the road towards a reasonable degree of competency. That, however, can be daunting in itself for the complete novice – even in quite a short book, where you want to be can seem impossibly far away from the jumping-off point.

You won’t have that problem with this book. At a mere 32 pages, there’s no room for expansion and the end never looks more than a comfortable reach. Sure, you’ll need something else when you’ve finished it, but the point is that you will do that, and there are plenty of books to choose from. Everything (amazingly) is here: heads, bodies, hands, structure and perspective, and presented in a non-intimidating way that can’t fail to have you thinking, “yes, I can do that”.

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Monstrously Funny Cartoons || Christopher Hart

OK, let’s be clear. You stand very little risk of needing your sides stitched back together if you venture into the pages of this book, but the title is a pun (you’d guessed, hadn’t you?). Actually, I managed to raise a smile at most of the pages. This is an engaging book that’s full of ideas if you fancy creating a world of amusing monsters.

I like Christopher Hart. He has a way of creating characters in a very few lines and of conveying his working methods succinctly and clearly. The book is full of good ideas and manages that tricky thing of not looking as though it’s been written by someone who’d like to be a cartoonist but isn’t quite good enough. (The best practitioners are too busy at their craft to write books about it). The instruction is fun, straightforward and produces results. Job done, I’d say.

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