Book Review – The Little Book of Cartooning & Illustration by Maury Aaseng; Clay Butler; Jim Campbell; Dan D’Addario; Alex Hallat; Joe Oesterle.

4 out of 5 stars

I would like to thank Quarto Publishing Group – Walter Foster for providing me with a free – temporary – electronic ARC of this book, via Netgalley. As I am auto-approved with this publisher, it is my choice and any reviews given are obligation free.

My name is Janis and I am a doodler. I feel I’ve already established that with previous books I’ve review, right? Well I’ve always wanted to be able to do cartoon drawings too and have never seemed to get it quite right… no matter how many comics and graphic novels I read, no matter how many cartoons I watch! 😀

So I really enjoyed ‘The Little Book of Cartooning & Illustration’ as it had some great step by step hints and tips that really have encouraged me to try again. I did do some cartoon faces, but as I used a very light pencil they’re not showing up that well in any photos I have taken of them. So, please sceptics of my reviews who say I can’t truly review a book I’ve not tried – I DID try this one, I just can’t show the results. Oh, and please feel free to visit when I am trying the next murder mystery I’m reading. 😉

‘The Little Book of Cartooning & Illustration’ is just that, a quick little book that gives you the step by step basics of generic cartooning. I also liked how it gave step by steps on how to turn a drawing from realistic to cartoonish… is that a word? I feel this is a great book for young and old artists wanting to try – or perfect – their cartooning skills.

In the layout and formatting side of things I do have a minor quibble… but it is VERY minor. I really didn’t like the way it kept swapping from portrait to landscape and back again. I am sure, if I had been reading a paperback version of this book it wouldn’t have been as annoying… but I’d still have been frustrated. If I’m using a book to learn a skill that uses my hands I don’t like having to keep moving the position of the book to keep learning.  Okay, so this may just be a fault with me, the reader, and not the actual book so relax everyone!

Would I recommend this book to others?

Yes I would. As said, this book would be a great little guide to get artists – both young and old – to give cartooning a go. Some who feel they can already draw fairly decent cartoons may also benefit from having a quick read through as we should never be too old or too experienced to learn something new.

Would I buy this book for myself?

Yes I would. If I am serious about illustrating some of my own writing with cartoon figures, I can see ‘The Little Book of Cartooning & Illustration’ being a very helpful book to have on hand… despite the layout quibble.

In summary: A good “little book” to add to your collection if you’re interested in doing some cartooning.


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