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Book Pleasures of Sketching Outdoors (Dover Art Instruction) by Clayton Hoagland (2012-05-01)


Pleasures of Sketching Outdoors (Dover Art Instruction) by Clayton Hoagland (2012-05-01)

4.2 (1976)

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  • PDF | Unknown pages
  • Dover Publications Inc. (1746)
  • Unknown
  • 7
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Review Text

  • By D. Blankenship on December 21, 2008

    If I had the choice of only one book on how to draw or how to sketch, this would be, beyond a doubt, the one I would choose. The copy I am reviewing here was published by Viking Press in 1947; is a hardback, and I have owned it since I was a wee one. At some point around 1953 my parents found this nice volume and gave it to me as a present and I have been using it since. Like me, it is a quite worn now and parts are failing, but it still gets the job done.Now this is not a book for children, far from it, but it is so well done, so well illustrated, so unpretentious, that a rather small child can use it, even one that cannot read all that well yet. This is not really a step by step how to do it book either, although it can be used as such. All of the sketches in it are executed in black and white, using either a pencil or charcoal as a medium. The pictures go from simple to complex, although not necessarily in that order. No art jargon is used; no technical terms or artistic theories clutter the text; just simply declarative sentences that say what the mean and mean what they say, all in lay language. This is so very, very refreshing when you compare so many of the books in this genre of today.The book teaches you, as the title would indicate, the pleasures of sketching outdoors. All one really needs is a pencil or two, a sketch pad (or scrap paper, which I used as an eight year old, but only when I was out of the Big Chief tablets), some solitude, and the will to pitch-in and give it a try. The author covers the foundations of better drawing, actual field work, trees, water, clouds, houses, figures, lighting, shading , composition, sketching under difficulties and so much more. The book is aimed at the amateur artist; the person who just wants to go out and enjoy themselves and draw some halfway decent pictures.The author stresses over and over again a fact that I have found to be oh so true. The best and only way to get better at what you do is practice, practice and more practice! The author devotes much time and space as to how this practice can be of the greatest benefit. If I got nothing else out of this book, this was a key point that has stuck down through the years. As a bonus, his lessons on the importance of practice have bleed over into other aspects of my life, and I must say, have been very helpful there too.This book is filled with dozens of black and white sketches of various complexities. When unable to actually go out and sketch a tree, there are plenty of examples that can be taken from the book and done over and over again on a rainy day. Not only can you practice with these pictures, but by reading the informative text, you can find out why you are practicing with them and this then translate well when you are actually out setting under a tree trying to draw another three located across a field. It is rather amazing how easy it is to draw an old barn when you are setting in front of it, if you have practiced drawing old barns hundreds of times while setting at the kitchen table.Now I have never made a dime from any of my painting or sketches; they are for my own enjoyment and that of my family, all of whom are kind enough to say nice things about them when I show them. I never intend to make a living with my drawings. I do it because I get great enjoyment out of it. It is a type of therapy for me and always has been. This work has done much to give me the tools I needed to enjoy my little therapy sessions to the fullest. If you can find a copy of this one, grab it, you will not be sorry.Don BlankenshipThe Ozarks

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