The human head and figure present a major obstacle for any up-and-coming artist, but learning to master them is a fundamental requirement for success. Jack Hamm’s book, Drawing the Head and Figure, offers a valuable insight into overcoming these complex challenges and is an essential resource for any novice in the field.
Drawing from the imagination is certainly important, but Hamm encourages artists to start by interpreting what they see instead. Pulling a pencil across the paper with care is key to avoiding irreparable damage, and taking the time to observe the subject matter can prove a great help. Steering clear of any tools that could restrict creativity – like T-squares and rulers – is suggested to really open up the possibilities for your artwork.
With a solid grasp of the subject, Hamm dives into demonstrating how the head and figure can be effectively drawn. He takes a holistic approach by breaking down the composition of the head, covering individual features and their appropriate placement. Afterwards, he expands this to the torso before tackling the limbs. His instructions are supported by step-by-step illustrations to boost clarity for the reader.
In a valuable section of his book, Hamm shares his insights on the difficulties that can arise when someone attempts to draw from photographs. He then provides beginners with guidance on how they can navigate these issues and dodge potential drawbacks.
Drawing the Head and Figure is a comprehensive go-to manual for aspiring painters wishing to refine their human form drawing abilities. Its enlightening instructions, reinforced by Jack Hamm’s captivating visualisations, makes this book invaluable to starters in the art of drawing.
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