Illustrations from Draw 50 Airplanes, Aircraft, and Spacecraft, by Lee J Ames, published by Doubleday in 1977. If I remember correctly, besides following the steps accurately, a successful drawing required that you loudly mimic the sounds of the craft as you drew it.
Henry Yan’s work invigorates a cliche – the notion of rendering as releasing a figure from its background. As technique, it’s thrilling – the wipes, the smears, the lifts – so much nuance teased out from a thin scrim of supple vine charcoal. Yan’s process is so evident, so dynamic that his work always seems to be in the process of making itself, which is what makes it so satisfying as art.
Yan began his art education in China. Eventually he moved to the United States where he studied at the Academy of Art College in San Francisco, where he is now a faculty member. These selections are from his book Henry Yan’s Figure Drawing: Techniques and Tips. His site, here.
Herewith, a new short series, featuring art from old illustration guides. They have such a distinctive character that they form, I think, something of a lost genre. What defines them, and what I find so appealing, is their distinctive balance of looseness and rigor – suspended as they are between sketches and finished works.
The selections above are by Howard Forsberg. Forsberg was a commercial illustrator in the 50’s and 60’s whose clients included Coca Cola and Budweiser as well as magazines like Colliers and Woman’s Day. He also taught painting at the mecca of classic illustration techniques – the Famous Artists School in Connecticut (a subject of posts to come.)
More selections in the days ahead.