Sunday, October 17, 2010

Review: Dragonart Evolution: How to Draw Everything Dragon

Dragonart Evolution: How to Draw Everything Dragon
by J. "NeonDragon" Peffer
Release Date: August 19, 2010
2010 Impact Books
Softcover Edition; 144 Pages
ISBN-13: 978-1-4403-0252-7
ISBN-10: 1-4403-0252-9
Source: Review Copy From Publisher

Magnificent and powerful creatures, these dragons be, with bone-crushing jaws and razor-sharp teeth, it's difficult to tell whether you're dealing with a hotheaded nature or a wise and benevolent beast.  Therein lies the trouble with drawing them both from life.  Make your dragon portraits more authentic (while avoiding loss of life and limbs) with the help of this guide.  A follow-up to the fiercely popular DragonArt, this book features ALL NEW dragons and EVEN MORE detailed dragon anatomy instruction.

My Thoughts
I was very impressed with DragonArt Evolution: How to Draw Everything Dragon and have had a difficult time doing this review simply because I haven't been able to get this book out of my son's hands.  He basically appropriated the book as soon as it arrived, and it took me quite a while to track it down so I could have a chance to look it over and try some of the art techniques myself.  My compromise with my very stubborn 10 year-old son was to sit down with him and draw some dragons together.  And boy, did we ever have a blast!

First of all, the book is full of beautiful drawings of dragons and I was more than happy to thumb through the pages, exploring the drawings of all of the different types of dragons.  They were colourful, vibrant, and beautiful, allowing your imagination to soar.  My son and I spent some time imagining some stories to go with the dragons.  I definitely have a budding storywriter on my hands (if I can ever get him to pick up a pencil for things other than schoolwork, that is!). 

I had always enjoyed sketching and drawing when I was younger, and do have a collection of drawing books from my younger days, although I really haven't touched them in years.  I had a lot of fun trying the step-by-step instructions and demonstrations that were given in this book.  And it was easy to follow as the book is separated into sections that make drawing fun.   The Introduction included things like drawing basic dragon shapes, dragon shading and 3-D effects, colour and pattern considerations, and perspective and overlap, all with easy to follow instructions and information.  Part 1 discussed how to draw the individual dragon parts while part 2 talked about how to put it all together and draw complete dragons.  She even included a very interesting, but far too short, demonstration on digital painting.

DragonArt Evolution: How to Draw Everything Dragon includes a lot of elements for the new or intermediate artist to draw many different types of dragons, and have fun doing it.  What I especially like about this book is how the artist encourages other artists to be creative and to mix and match things to create new things.  She definitely encourages fledging artists to be brave in their artwork and to try new things.  As a mom, I am definitely in favour of that type of philosophy and look forward to watching my children develop their artistic skills, and their imaginations, as they pore over this book.


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