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Book Spotlight: Post your fave art books


Active Member

This is the book that really got me to begin to understand more serious artwork, and inspired me to learn and improve myself, giving me some basic fundamentals to begin with. I love it so much.

Ooh...anyone else got dragon book recommendations?

Arshes Nei

Masticates in Public


Hit 'em right between the eyes
Neondragon is good, but the ones Arshes posted are better.

I also like looking at D&D Monster Manuals.

Arshes Nei

Masticates in Public
While he has the book for sale, one artist offers a free downloadable and printable PDF of his book.
The Fundamentals of Drawing from Life.

Read The Text

He sells a physical copy on Amazon for 25. He also graciously accepts donations on his website for providing his free PDF.


Arshes Nei

Masticates in Public
Thanks for reminding me about that Bobby Chiu book. It was on my list of things to get.

I used to listen to his podcasts a lot. I always get reminded of why you draw from life because of this simple video

Onto Books:

David Colman's book on Animal Character Design is one of my favorite books. Unfortunately I believe it's out of print because the prices for it skyrocketed.


He does have other books out.



He's also got some DVDs for Character design too. Vol 1 and 2.


New Member
Has anyone here seen this book?

I've flipped through it a bit and it looks like it has some good stuff in it

Arshes Nei

Masticates in Public
God that Draw Furries book is still nightmare fuel.

I think Impact went around shopping for someone to shill that topic and got Jared and Lindsay. While their techniques have been generally helpful in the past, like - http://apps.corel.com/painterix/training/tutorial_inking.html?trkid=tpc1006ft and their older book on how to CG. even with the crack eyes. http://www.jaredandlindsay.com/tutorialcdsample/html/chapter4-inking1.html

Draw Furries is creepy and awful. It really is mostly telling you to go use other books half the time. It has some creepy ass eyes and while some illustrations are interesting there's a lot of misses. Even the cover is fucking creepy. Seriously why is that Fox's eye like front view when his head is in profile?

Arshes Nei

Masticates in Public
A good Business book. I also recommend the Graphic Artists' Handbook but they update about every year so not directly linking since some prices could have changed.


More on artists I like I like getting these Sketch books because they're cheap and have a lot of sketches - lets you study their process

Alphonse Mucha


John Singer Sargent


One of my favorite books on drawing the head - There is an amusing section how he mixes anthropomorphic features in the end of his book



Sex nuts and retard strong
Haha the draw furries book! I discovered it myself (online pics only) and posted on Concept Art a few months back for some laughs.

Generally almost all 'how to draw [insert popular trope here] books are bullshit and should be reviled for the memory of the tree that gave its life for it.

Arshes Nei

Masticates in Public
To be fair, I think those books have value to young children who dont realize the importance of life drawing yet.

Well as shills, yes if you want kids' expendable income.
However, I stated earlier the book tells you to go to other books including life drawing so how is that helpful?

Even Lee Ames books have more value than that :p


I was going through the Impact books and they're kinda...shitty. They only vaguely explain the basics while teaching stylized cartoony things from the very beginning. That includes the DragonArt books, Making Faces, Drawing Heads, etc.
Joseph Shepard's anatomy book is awesome for learning proportions, too. I'm a little uncomfortable with learning anatomy from drawings and not photos though, but whatever.

Well since everyone already posted my favorites, I guess I'll post a title that everyone here is going to balk at.
More How to Draw Manga Vol. 1 The Basics of Character Design by Go Office

Go Office's How to Draw Manga series are the only how to draw manga books that I would ever recommend to anyone. Seriously, don't touch anything else.
I learned how stylism works, how real life translates to stylistic drawings, how using IRL photos as a reference for even the most cartoony picture can help, how hair looks shit tons better when there's a pattern/swirl to it, and a bunch of random stuff (like that shoulder/hips thing) from this.
And it's made by real Japanese people! :p

My one complaint is that it's not very organized. Everything's in its proper chapter, but you can tell that this is a bunch of artists dumping every little thing they know and think will help.

The series has been out of production for years now though, and the only ones you're going to find are online used copies and questionably-legal uploaded ones. If you're going to google it, google the whole title I underlined. wink. wink.

Books for inspiration:

Random things inspire me, but I guess I probably should post books that make me really want to draw something.
Let's start with my favorite dragon book.

Warning: This book single-handedly could make someone completely and utterly obsessed with dragons. Proceed with caution.
Downside? The art and (probably made-up-on-the-spot) myths may jump start my imagination and leave me in awe, but Ciruelo's art is also pretty intimidating so it has a chance of having the reverse effect as far as inspiring goes.

This book, though, is a surefire way to get me to draw something.
Kingyo Used Books
It's a cute manga about how comic books and art bring people together. My description sounds awful, but it's a real page-turner and you'll be smiling the whole time.
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Active Member
I was following the Kingyo manga at one point. It is inspiring, but the nature of it means that it refers to a lot of manga that's never been translated into English. Don't buy it if you don't enjoy reading a copious amount of notes in the back of the book.
Knowing the mangas mentioned isn't really the point. The notes are basically just there in case you're interested.
You pretty much get the picture when they're mentioned.

Besides, it's better that you don't know the titles that are mentioned, which, again, may be mentioned but isn't close to what the focus is at all. If you don't know them, it prevents reader dissonance like 'well, i didn't actually like that manga at all' happening.

QT Melon

AMF Member


R'hllor Coaster
So Richard Schmid is releasing an updated and expanded edition of Alla Prima, called Alla Prima II.

The original Alla Prima is out of print and sells for around $300 used. It is considered THE book on representational painting.