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Sketching People: Life Drawing Basics Paperback – 28 Aug 2009

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Product details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: North Light Books (28 Aug. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1600611508
  • ISBN-13: 978-1600611506
  • Product Dimensions: 21 x 1.5 x 27.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 228,020 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Jeff Mellem is a senior editorial production artist for National Dragster magazine and has designed video games, created sets for film and helped design costumes for a nationally traveling circus. He earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from California State University and has studied drawing extensively at the American Animation Institute in North Hollywood, California.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By M. F. Cayley on 28 Feb. 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is not a conventional book on life drawing, and gives quite a bit of focus to the clothed human figure. For me, the most interesting parts of the book are those which illustrate different ways of using blocks of shading to suggest parts of the human figure, often with gaps which the brain fills in.
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By M. Mccurtin on 29 Mar. 2014
Format: Paperback
Mellem's drawings resemble those of Glenn Vilppu which for me isn't a bad thing, he uses the same pen, waterbrush and paper too.
The book covers basics such as gesture drawing and simple forms but spends far more time on drapery, I think the reason for this is that the book is about sketching people in everyday settings not just life drawing . There are also sections on composition, facial expressions, body language and value.

The author hasn't set out to make a "complete" book of sketching or life drawing but has created a book to give the reader a good grounding in how to sketch/draw people.
It's not an expensive book, nor is it a cheap one but I feel that it's worth its price, I often flip through it when looking for inspiration.

For anyone looking to study the style of drawing the author uses have a look at Glenn Vilppu's books and dvds, they go into far more detail than this book but cost more, the drawing manual can be purchased as a download and is well worth buying.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 20 reviews
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
Great book if you are getting into or improving your figure drawing and life drawing 15 Oct. 2011
By Callie - Published on
Format: Paperback
This is an excellent life drawing book - definitely in the category of "good art books", not the often-seen category of "art books with no substance". I am just taking up figure drawing (in workshops at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena), and this book has been extremely helpful to me so far. Pretty much everyone in the workshop is better than me at drawing, but I think with the information from this book and lots of dedicated practice I can get up to their level!

Here is the summary of what the book contains:

Chapter one: Observational Drawing

Chapter two: Gesture

Chapter three: Basic Forms

Chapter four: Drapery

Chaper five: Expressions

Chapter six: Body Language

Chapter seven: Staging

Chapter eight: Value
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
simple & helpful 28 April 2013
By KT - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I'm in a field with a lot of linear thinkers, so I found myself doodling to let off steam and keep in touch with my creative, out-of-the-box self. I got sick of drawing pathetic little flowers and wanted a little coaching on drawing people. This book offers step by step guidance, and I can keep it with me on my i-Phone. Fabulous!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Beginner 23 Nov. 2012
By Freedownloader - Published on
Format: Paperback
I loved this book. It has given me confidence. I understand that my drawings are not going to be like the Masters but they, at the very least, look like I know what I am doing - better than those tentative, dribbly things that I was doing before. I am looking for more books by this author, or an author that has his style of teaching.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
I love this book! 28 May 2013
By Nancy Foster - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I took a figure drawing class last summer and wanted to take another class to keep my skill up. I got this book as instead because I can't really afford to take another class. So far this book is just as good if not better than taking a class. If you can find some time to sit down, this book is going to help you a lot.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Very useful. 6 Dec. 2012
By Heathers Couture - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is nice because it's very cut and dry. It's simple and very useful without any fluff. The concepts are easy to understand, and the illustrations are not unattainable by the average artist.
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