Drawing Lessons

Drawing Lessons

by Willy Pogány

NOOK Book(eBook)

$10.99 $12.95 Save 15% Current price is $10.99, Original price is $12.95. You Save 15%.

Available on Compatible NOOK Devices and the free NOOK Apps.
WANT A NOOK?  Explore Now
LEND ME® See Details


In this essential guide to the basic principles of drawing the human figure, Pogany—one of the leaders of the Golden Age of Illustration—shows readers the path to artistic mastery. With a warm and supportive tone, he seamlessly blends instruction and insight with 375 masterful illustrations. The aim: to build a foundation for those who wish to draw skillfully and easily.
Beginning with the humble dot and moving forward to perspective, anatomy, shading, portraiture, balance, motion, and more, this step-by-step resource is a genuine inspiration. Details of the human head, eyes, ears, and feet add depth to the instruction, followed by simple demonstrations that clearly illustrate how fundamental techniques are put into practice. Easy to follow and concise, this guide has long been considered an important resource for artists of all abilities.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780486140414
Publisher: Dover Publications
Publication date: 03/08/2012
Series: Dover Art Instruction
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 128
File size: 18 MB
Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

About the Author

In addition to his work as an illustrator of classics, Hungarian-born artist Willy Pogány (1882–1955)served as an art director on several Hollywood films, including Fashions of 1934 and Dames. He was also an author and teacher whose instructive manuals include Dover's Oil-Painting Lessons.

Read an Excerpt

Drawing Lessons


Dover Publications, Inc.

Copyright © 2007 Dover Publications, Inc.
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-486-14041-4



A dot is the simplest thing to draw — so let us begin with the dot.

Take a small writing pad.

Tear out a couple of pages.

Draw a dot anywhere on one of these blank pages.

Now try to draw a dot on the other blank page in exactly the same position.

Do not trace. Do not measure — except with your eye.

You can see how wrong it would be to place the dot in any one of these positions.

If you judge with your eye the right distance from the edge of the paper, your dot will be in the right spot.

Next make several dots at random on a clean page — something like this ->

Then copy all of them on a clean sheet.

Do not measure or trace — just try to judge the correct distances.

To check the accuracy of your copy place it over the original dots and hold both up towards the light. Note your mistakes.

Practice this simple exercise until you come close to perfection. This practice will aid greatly in developing your judgment of Distance, Direction and Proportion.


We know that a cube has six sides.

We know also that each side is a perfect square, but if we draw a cube as we know it to be, it does not look like a cube.

For example, here are six perfect squares but this drawing does not look like a cube.

We know that a man has a front and a back, but we have never seen both front and back at the same time.

We know that a tin can has a circular top and a circular bottom of equal size, but we must admit that we never have seen a tin can like this.

We know that the house in the distance is considerably larger than the man in the foreground.

We know also that the mountain in the far distance is much larger than the house, but we see the man larger than the house and we see the house larger than the mountain.

Objects near us seem larger and those in the distance seem smaller.

We know that the tracks are parallel.

We know too that they are the same distance apart all along the line.

We know that the telegraph poles are all about equal in height.

Still we see the tracks getting nearer and nearer to one another, and we see the poles getting smaller and smaller the farther they recede until finally the tracks and the poles seem to disappear into a point.

The point into which parallel lines converge is called a VANISHING POINT.

Here is a simple way to find the center of a square or an oblong. Draw the diagonals and they will intersect in the center.

These diagrams show to repeat squares or oblongs in perspective.

These diagrams show how an oblong is divided into equal spaces.

Draw a line parallel to Eye level through A.

Mark equally the desired number of measurements on this line.

Draw a line from the last measurement through corner B to the Eye level.

Draw all your dividing lines to this point C.

Where these converging lines cross A-B will be your points of division.

Use the same system of repeating squares or oblongs in drawing these arches, windows and checker board.

If you look up at a group of high buildings you will find the center vanishing point far above your eye level.

When looking down, your main vanishing point is below eye level.


Note that the circles seem flatter as they come nearer to eye level.

At eye level we see only the edge of the circle as a horizontal line.

Above eye level we see the bottom of the circle.


Raise a glass vertically and observe how the circular rim changes shape until it becomes a straight line at eye level.

Drawings of glassware show clearly the perspective of circles.


The problem is to place a few figures at some distance apart; we want them standing on the spots marked A, B and C.

First, we find a Vanishing Point by drawing a projection line from point X, at the foot of the figure, across point A to eye level.

Draw line from X1 to VP for height of figure.

Next, we draw all necessary projection lines to this Vanishing Point. Then a vertical line at point A will give us all proportions for figure A.

To draw figure on spot B draw horizontal line from B to projection line X — A — VP. From point B1 draw a vertical line to projection line X1 — VP. This vertical line B1 — B2 will give you the height of the figure B — B3. Proceed in the same manner to draw in figure at spot C.

We measure objects by stretching out our arm and, holding our pencil vertically, indicating the proportionate size with the thumb — like this:


Suppose we stand before an open window. On the window sill is a pot of flowers and, in the distance, a house that we wish to draw.

Whatever the size of our drawing the proportions will remain the same. In this instance the house will be about one-fifth the size of the flower and the pot, and the flower will be almost four times as high as the pot. All objects and their proportions are measured in the same way.

After you have been drawing for some time you will seldom need to measure in this way. Your eyes will become so adjusted that only occasionally will you. need to check by measuring.

When an object is leaning toward you, the parts nearest you, naturally, seem to be out of proportion, and often hide the parts that are farther back. This visual distortion is called foreshortening.


The shape of a sphere is a circle like this ->

However, the outline shows only its shape, shading is necessary to show its form.

These spheres are lighted at different angles by a single light source.

There are, roughly, five distinct tones of shading that characterize a lighted object:

1. Lighted surface

2. Shade

3. Shadow

4. Reflection

5. Cast-shadow

The cast-shadow is the darkest shade.

On the lighted surface we usually find a brilliant spot called a highlight.


Excerpted from Drawing Lessons by WILLY POGANY. Copyright © 2007 Dover Publications, Inc.. Excerpted by permission of Dover Publications, Inc..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents


Title Page,
Copyright Page,
Sketches and studies,

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews