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Drawing Cartoons and Comics For Dummies Paperback – August 3, 2009

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Your real-world guide to creating and marketing original cartoons

Do you love comics? Want to become a cartoonist? This practical, hands-on guide is packed with step-by-step instructions and plenty of tips for creating your own cartoons. From inanimate objects to animals to aliens, you can see how to breathe life into your characters and make your cartoons stand out. Plus, you discover how to

  • Master the basic building blocks — set up your workspace; start creating with pencil, ink, and pens; and fix mistakes
  • Get the creative juices flowing — find inspiration and formulate your cartoon idea, gag, or concept, and make it work

  • Create your characters — from their heads to their toes, give your characters personality and presence

  • Assemble your comic strip — create an effective background, plan your layout, letter your cartoons, create drama, and more

  • Fine-tune your work — discover the tools and techniques for digitally formatting your comics

Open the book and find:

  • An overview of the different cartooning genres
  • Drawing techniques, such as shading and crosshatching

  • An exploration of body, gender, species, and character types

  • Tips for developing a cast of characters

  • The lowdown on drawing editorial cartoons

  • How to add color to your creations

  • Ten steps to a finished comic strip

  • Hints on breaking into the business

About the Author

Brian Fairrington is a nationally syndicated cartoonist whose work has appeared in The New York Times, USA Today, and Time magazine, as well as on CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC. Fairrington has won many awards, including the Charles M. Schulz award for college cartooning and the John Locher Memorial Award, given annually by the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists (AAEC).
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: For Dummies; 1 edition (August 3, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470426837
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470426838
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.8 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #316,390 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Anne Tavis on July 6, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have about 2 or 3 other 'how to draw comics' and this by far is the most researched and thought out one .
Here are just a few of the things you will learn about in this fantastic book . :

1:Getting started with cartoons and comics . (An excellent clash of examples based on the great comic creators of our time and before . Calvin and hobbes , Pogo ,Peanuts , Dilbert , ect ... Plus a little history behind the comics industry .)

2:Creating cartoon characters : (How to create humans , animals,editoral cartoon characters , ect ...)

3:Taking cartoons to the next level :(Here the author talks about placeing your comics on the interenet and introduces photoshop. )

4: How to run your own cartoon buissness . And how to get your comic strip or editoral out there for the world to see it .
There are 18 chapters in all (plus index).Those were just the tip of the iceburg .
The only problem I had with Drawing cartoons and comics for Dummies is that there wasn't (in my oppion) enough how to draw things . For example , hands are very hard to draw for people , because they can be very expressive . Suere he talked about making heads and figures , but he didn't put in how to formulate expressions , and postures .

Other then that minor flaw this book is pure gold .
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By ScottGuy on October 15, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I expected some text of course, but not quite so much!

Most books on sketching and cartooning provide page upon page of examples to see and follow. This book, Drawing and Cartooning for Dummies, has impressive amount of textual information stuffed in. However, it provides very little in the way of cartoon figures to mimic or aspire to compared to similar, albeit thinner books. The first 85 pages hardly have not a single illustration! (It's all about different cartoon genres.)

Later on there one or two examples on drawing nearly everything. (including many inanimate objects. (I have no interest in drawing cartoon couches or TVs).

I am disappointed since I expected a book with hundreds or at least many dozens of cartoons of people. (In contrast I've seen "teaching books" with too *many* illustrations lacking any instruction on HOW to draw which are just as bad in their way.)

I am sure I can learn a lot from this book but I would have preferred a book that contains multiple sample cartoon styles of different age people and genders since artist's styles vary a great deal. Oh well.

It was delivered very quickly.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By JBradley on April 7, 2010
Format: Paperback
I read it cover to cover and it's hard for me to finish a book. It was clear, concise, and complete. I can't imagine
anything that was missed for a beginner.
J. Bradley
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By dbr on October 31, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book holds a variety of informational points that we are using in my classroom to complete a unit on cartooning. My students range from fourth to eighth grade, and all of them can use the book with no problems. I will be adding this to my class library for all my students to use after the unit is done.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Swanee on August 18, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Drawing Cartoons and Comics for Dummies is a simple way to learn this style of drawing. The chapters are such that you can skip around to meet your needs. The text is easy to read. The illustrations support the text and make the whole learning process fun.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Tired of Defrag on February 6, 2013
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More info than necessary (for me, at least) on history, how to market, etc. For my personal use which is just for fun, more emphasis on the "how-to" would have been better.
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Very helpful info, especially about the change of material/tools to make your cartoons & comics. Printed in 2009, I'm just now getting this book in 2015. Very informative on how-to's and what-to's of the past remembered, and usable. Very helpful answers on the what-to's of the computer world tools and simulating drawing tools. The heads up on digital media for the internet market and the print media. (At least the changes up to 2009. Time for an latest update edition to this book.) Great info for those looking for answers on Drawing Cartoon & Comics. I learned a lot myself, as I'm learning the change from 3 and a half decades in ink& paper to tablet & computer for my cartooning.
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By Randy Crawford on October 9, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Being a cartoonist since 1981 I was looking for a more recent book with updated computer cartooning and comic book drawing info.Most of the books I had were from 2000 -04.The section on computer color separation was particularly helpful.A few months back I did a color separation for a comic book cover using guidelines from a 2000 publication that took over 12 hours.The steps in this book made the process only a couple of hours.Other info was also very useful.
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