art books

October 2016 Art Book Recommendations + Artwork

Hi Creative Friends,

Today, I'm sharing a few books I checked out from the library during the month of September.  I made some art inspired by the lessons I learned...

1.  Beautiful Faces by Jane Davenport

Beautiful Faces is a book about how to draw and paint faces.  Jane Davenport shows you tons of different mixed media tricks and techniques (plus step by step instructions).  

Biggest take away: I love the way she simplifies the face and makes it fun to create.  She also uses flowing hair to create movement.

Watercolor in Strathmore mixed media journal.  I haven't come up with a title yet...

Watercolor in Strathmore mixed media journal.  I haven't come up with a title yet...


For some reason I could never really draw bird wings just right.  To me there are way to many feathers and details.  John Laws' book breaks down each part of bird so it's easier to digest.

He really does guide you through the drawing process and uses tons of different birds in the process.

Biggest take away: Bird wings have different size feathers that make up the wing.  Once you get a handle on that you are good to go!  He also has a section on drawing birds in flight which is really helpful.

Here is a work in progress based on the lessons from his book.  The sketch is done, I just need to add watercolor.  I might incorporate birds in my upcoming online class!


"Nesting" WIP - sketch in mixed media visual journal.

3.  The Artist's Complete Guide to Drawing the Head by William Maughan

Ya'll know I love drawing faces right.  This drawing book is more of a traditional style of drawing (as opposed to my illustrative style).  If you need a guide with strong drawing instructions then you should probably pick this one up.

Biggest take away: He talks about the importance of using light and shadow to define the face as opposed to using line.  There are also some amazing tips on setting up the face in 3/4 view.


"Early Flight" WIP - sketch on in mixed media journal.


This sketch is a mix of all three books in one.  I can't wait to make this into a larger painting.  If you have any book recommendations please leave them in the comments below.  I'd love to know what you are reading.

Last but not least...Inktober starts tomorrow and I plan to participate!  If you don't know what it is click here.  Thanks so much for stopping by!  Sharing with PPF!