Lett us begin by establishing our common objective. You may be interested in drawing as a hobby. You may be an art student attending drawing classes. You may be a young professional. out of school, striving to better your work so that it will bring in more income. Perhaps you studied art many years ago and now have the time and incentive to take it up again. Perhaps you are well established in the field of commercial art, where competition is formidable, and are looking for something that will help you hold your place and, if possible, keep you moving forward. Whichever category you arc in, this book will be helpful to you, because it provides practical knowledge of the techniques of drawing heads, both for the complete beginner and to help the more advanced artist in those most frustrating moments when the head he is drawing seems to refuse to do his work justice.
There must be a genuine basic motive behind any genuine effort. Ask yourself quite honestly, "Why do I really want to draw heads and draw them well?" Is it for the satisfaction of personal accomplishment? Does it mean enough to you to give up time from other things in order to learn? Do you hope someday to sell your work and make it your means of livelihood? Would you like to draw portraits, girls' heads for calendars, illustrations for magazine stories, the people in advertisements? Do you want to improve your drawing of heads to help sell your work? Is drawing a form of relaxation to you, helping to relieve tension and clear your mind of worries and other problems? Search quietly and thoroughly for this basic motive, because if it is powerful enough, it will give your efforts the strength to withstand discouragement, disappointment, disillusionment, or even seeming failure.
May I add one suggestion? Whatever your en 5
motive, try not to be impatient. Impatience has probably been a bigger stumbling block in the way of real ability than anything else. Doing anything well, I'm sure, means hurdling obstacles of one kind or another most of the way to the goal. Skill is the ability to overcome obstacles, the first of which is usually lack of knowledge about the thing we wish to do. It is the same in anything we attempt. Skill is a result of try-ing again and again, applying our ability and proving our knowledge as we gain it. Let us get used to throwing away the unsuccessful effort and doing the job over. Let us consider obstacles as something to be expected in any endeavor; then they won't seem quite so insurmountable or so defeating.
Our procedure will be a little different from that of the usual textbook. In general, textbooks seem to confine the material solely to problem and solution, or to technical analysis. That, in my own belief, is one of the reasons why textbooks are so difficult to read and digest. Every concentrated creative effort involves a personality, since skill is a personal matter. Since we are dealing not with organic material like nuts and bolts, but with human qualities like hope and ambition, faith or discouragement, we must throw out the textbook formulas and consider personal achievement as the basic element of our planning. An instructor would not be very helpful if he gave his students only the words of a textbook, all cold hard fact, without feeling, without praise or personal encouragement. I cannot participate in all your personal problems, but I can certainly remember my own, and assume that yours will not be greatly different. Therefore this book anticipates the solution of these problems even l>efore you meet them. I believe that is the only way to handle this type of subject effectively.
There is an element of joy in doing what you
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