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Quick Start to Fantasy Art

If you’d like to try your hand at fantasy art and aren’t sure where to start, why not try the library’s collection?  We have many books that can teach you to create art – everything from watercolor painting to amigurumi (Japanese-style little crocheted stuffed animals) to iPad art techniques!   

Watercolor PaintingWatercolor Painting: a Comprehensive Approach to Mastering the Medium by Tom Hoffman
ANF 751.422 HO

Hoffman not only gives lessons on techniques, but tries to leave readers with the skills to continue to improve their work. He offers insight about general painting techniques such as composition and choosing the right subject, as well as instruction on watercolor-specific techniques. 


Amigurumi WorldAmigurumi World: Seriously Cute Crochet by Ana Paula Rimoli
ANF 746.434 RI

Here are over twenty cute and quirky designs you can use and customize, as well as insight into how to make your own creations.  There's everything from an octopus family to an apple with a worm in it!  As a bonus: once you learn the techniques here, the internet is full of examples of figures to try.  

iPad for ArtistsiPad for Artists by Dani Jones
ANF 776 JO

Want to learn about great apps to create art and the different kinds of tools you can use with your iPad?  Many different techniques are covered here, step-by-step, including drawing, painting, and comic creation.  The book also shares artwork from professionals who use the iPad for their careers.


The Art and Craft of PyrographyThe Art & Craft of Pyrography: Drawing With Fire on Leather, Gourds, Cloth, Paper, & Wood by Lora S. Irish
ANF 745.514 IR

Want to try something different?  Learn techniques to place your art on all manner of surfaces.  This book provides both patterns and advice for creating your works of art wherever you'd like them to be.  Beginners and experienced woodburners can benefit from Irish's detailed instruction.


We also have books specifically about fantasy art available.  A few examples are:

Art of Drawing Fantasy CharactersThe Art of Drawing Fantasy Characters by Jacob Glaser
ANF 743.87 GL

You don't need to be an experienced artist to learn how to create fantastic figures from this book.  Glaser, a professional artist, covers foundational drawing techniques to teach readers the ins and outs of drawing imaginary beings.  He also discusses common elements and themes that can make your work stand out in this style.


How to Draw Fantasy ArtHow to Draw Fantasy Art by Mark Bergin
CNF 743.87 BE

This book,found in the children's section of the library, includes step-by-step instructions on how to draw particular types of fantasy people and creatures, as well as information about perspective, expression, drawing tools, and so on. This information allowa readers to customize or create their own versions of these subjects.


How to Draw DragonsHow to Draw Dragons by Jimmy Hansen
CNF 743.87 HA

Here is another great children's drawing book, but this one explains how to draw three different kinds of dragons, drawing on Eastern, Western, and North American tales.  It also gives clear and simple instructions about techniques such as perspective, features, and figures. 


Now that you’ve got the basics down, are you looking for some inspiration?  Why not check out critically acclaimed fantasy art online, such as the winners of Chesley Awards?  The Spectrum Award website has some great nomination videos and then there are the Hugo Awards.  They just posted winners for Best Professional Artist, Julie Dillon, and Best Fan Artist, Sarah Webb, this August! 

Another way to get ideas is to search for popular fantasy artists.  Well known artists Brian and Wendy Froud -- whose designs were used in the Dark Crystal and Labyrinth movies -- are a great source of ideas and even have a virtual scuplture gallery.  Many other artists also display their work on-line.  Some you may like to try are Daniel Ljunggren, Alicia AustinMichael Whelan, Heather Theurer, or Daniel Dociu.  

There are also on-line art communities where people share their work and offer advice.  An extremely popular one with both fan art and instructional posts is deviantART.  As you might guess from that fan art link, you can find art relating to most any theme there.

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