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I unreservedly recommend Claire Watson Garcia'’s “15th Anniversary“ revision of her seminal book for beginning (and advancing) drawing students.
For “new” beginners - this edition offers the superb organization and lucid explanations that characterize Claire’s first edition. Her exercises, tips and sample drawings continue to reflect her deep understanding of the ambitions (and frustrations) of new artists. Her students’ comments which accompany their drawings helpfully reinforce Claire’s lessons. They inspired me to think, “I can do it, too."
For those who already know Claire’s first book, this extensively revised version is well worth its bargain price. She has included new chapters on “Adding Dimension to Contour Drawing” and “Drawing the Face - Three-Quarter View”. Her edits and additions provide greater flow, logic and clarity. And her revised graphics and layout are cleaner, more spacious and even better correlated with her text.
In short, I believe this is a great book for beginners, and can carry them further than her first edition. Aspiring artists should be grateful that Claire has given us the benefit of her last 15 years of teaching. Kitty S.
I cannot recommend this book highly enough. I have wanted to draw since I was a little girl but my classes in school did not set me up for success and I was convinced that I didn't have the talent needed in order to draw. Now at 34 after starting to use this book I find myself able to draw and I could not be happier. The practices seem unconventional at first read but they really have helped me to be able to draw what I see realistically. I was definitely an absolute and utter beginner when I started, I could barely draw a stick figure. Now when I see my drawings actually looking realistic and true to life I feel like some kind of magic is happening. I really do believe now that anyone can learn to draw, it's just a matter of finding the right learning technique and this book fit the bill for me. The quotes from her students were very helpful and encouraging, this is a low pressure book allowing for "mistakes" and really making your drawings your own. Thank you Claire Watson Garcia for helping me realize my dream.
this was a gift for my mom who has two artistic daughters and at 66yrs old decided she wanted to learn how to draw too. when i looked it over to make sure it was a good place to start but would also grow with her. this book is full of exercises that teach the lessons of my own college art courses but with methods that are unique. i felt inspired by the book and may by myself a copy. when mom got it, she loved it. she said now i feel ready to buy a "full size sketch book and maybe i can learn to draw something i'm not embarrassed to show anybody." i'm so excited for her. this book is great.
I was not an artist, but COVID gave me extra time so I took it up as a hobby and got this book to learn. I highly recommend it, helped guide me through my skill-building while modeling the experience not dissimilar to a class in college.