It seems like there’s no shortage of books about art … ‘how to’ and ‘help’ books … and I’ve read a few of them over the years and I stumbled on this Urban Sketching Handbook series quite by accident. But a lucky accident it was.
I was so impressed with this book, as well as the other book in the series that I received at the same time (Understanding Light) that I immediately put all the previous books in my online wish-list and bought one that I thought might come in most handy.
The book (and the series) isn’t about teaching someone how to draw or sketch, it’s about offering up lessons, tips, and techniques on how to improve one’s drawing or new ways to look at things, as presented by working urban sketchers. This particular volume focuses on panoramas and vertical lines.
Vertical lines? Why would that need separate attention? Because we tend to think of panoramas in terms of horizontal, sometimes forgetting the importance of the vertical line and how it can impact a drawing.
Artist/author Mário Linhares puts together 112 pages of insightful tips with a sketch/drawing/painting as an example for each tip. I really appreciate this format so much more than a thick book explaining every moment and the philosophy behind every moment with one or two examples (often photos rather than sketches). After reading through this, I found myself looking through it again and when a sketch caught my eye, it was easy to pause and read the short piece connected to the sketch.
This particular book is designed with a few fold out pages (which makes a lot of sense given that it’s about panoramas), which should be really nice for the physical book but it doesn’t mean as much for the digital reader. In fact you either have to zoom out so much that it’s hard to read, or you have to scroll across the screen.
I found this book quite helpful. The shorter, quicker writing tips makes it easier for the artist to jump right in and try the new techniques.
Looking for a good book? The Urban Sketching Handbook: Panoramas & Vertical Lines by Mário Linhares is a helpful art book that you’ll want to carry around, along with your sketchbook.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Edelweiss, in exchange for an honest review.
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The Urban Sketching Handbook: Panoramas & Vertical Lines
author/artist: Mário Linhares
publisher: Quarry Books
paperback, 112 pages