Word About the Book:
It is easier to draw the figure than it is to paint it. And you
can only paint the figure as well as you can draw it. If, through
the medium of drawing, you do not understand the surface of the
human body, nor comprehend its subtle formal structure, there is
very little likelihood that you will master it in paint. All the
great painters have been great draftsmen. This is because drawing
is the essence of painting.
is therefore essential that all aspiring painters learn to draw:
to draw, not simply to sketch. Sketching is in itself a beautiful
art. But sketching is not drawing. A sketch captures in a few strokes
some aspect of the movement, proportion and character of the figure.
Sketches can be exquisitely beautiful. Drawing on the other hand
builds an image of the figure, an image replete with every subtle
curve, both in the outline, and throughout its entire visible surface.
This is accomplished in drawing through the work of shading. Through
shading is described the ever turning, ever modulating form of the
surface of the body that occurs within the confines of the contour.
Artist's Complete Guide to Figure Drawing was written for those
who wish to develop an in-depth vision of the human figure. It was
written for painters and draftsmen alike, who, having seen the drawings
and paintings of the masters, desire to work in that ancient and
venerable mode. As, to the refined and sensitive palate, fine aged
wine is better than newly squeezed grape juice, so the great art
of centuries past is infinitely more pleasing than much that goes
by the name of art today. Would that we all might discover the richness
of the beauty of the human figure as it was once known to artists
I hope that The Artist's Complete Guide to Figure Drawing
might contribute to a reawakening of such an awareness, to a renaissance,
and to a rebirth in each artist of this subtle understanding.