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How to Draw Comics the Marvel Way
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How to Draw Comics the Marvel Way

3.91 of 5 stars 3.91  ·  rating details  ·  4,339 ratings  ·  66 reviews
One of the first and still one of the best, Stan Lee’s How to Draw Comics the Marvel Way has been the primary resource for any and all who want to master the art of illustrating comic books and graphic novels.

Stan Lee, the Mighty Man from Marvel, and John Buscema, active and adventuresome artist behind the Silver Surfer, Conan the Barbarian, the Mighty Thor and S
Paperback, 192 pages
Published September 14th 1984 by Touchstone (first published 1977)
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Understanding Comics by Scott McCloudHow to Draw Comics the Marvel Way by Stan LeeAlive Character Design by Haitao SuSteal Like an Artist by Austin KleonThe Big Book of Cartooning by Bruce Blitz
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Community Reviews

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Greta is Erikasbuddy
If you are looking for a book that will show you how to draw The Mighty Thor, Spiderman, The Incredible Hulk, or even Captain America's Shield... well, this book isn't that one.

It's not a step by step guide on how to draw characters. It's a step by step guide on how to draw THE MARVEL WAY!!

And what does that mean?

Well, I thought it was going to show me how to draw Spidey and Shellhead, and Cap.

But no... IT shows you how to ink, draw action, start with stick figures, where to position, and what
This is a very good little figure drawing book. I teach art in high school and have had all sorts of students buy it after seeing it in my class, but it would be appropriate for kids from late elementary up. I keep several copies of it out on TAKS testing days and kids with little to no drawing experience will happily follow the step by step to draw Spidey, but is is not just a step to step book. There is real, accurate, and practical advice about how to master the figure for more serious beginn ...more
Classic instruction which started many artists on that long path (I bought a used copy, myself, as a child). Combine with a little Loomis, Hogarth, and some figure drawing and you are on your way to being a real talent.

This is pretty much an introduction to the Marvel 'house style' at the time, but certainly still applicable.

My Suggested Readings in Comics
Johnny Atomic
Jan 12, 2012 Johnny Atomic rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: children, begining artists
When I was young, every little boy I knew wanted to draw comics (these days many little girls do too, and that’s awesome) but I had a serious advantage over all of them.

I was the only kid on my block with a copy of How to Draw Comics the Marvel Way

It is nearly impossible to write a book that touches upon all the essential aspects of a given art field in any relevant way. Yet, somehow Stan Lee brings us just that. It doesn’t stop with proper tools, formulas, and methods. It even approaches profe
As long as I can recall, I always loved art. As a child and teenager my favorite art was the comic book. I devoured them! As I could draw a little I thought becoming a comic book arist would be the greatest. I picked up this volume and found it to be a pretty good book on a lot of drawing essentials. It really taught me a lot about figure drawing in particular. Sure some of the prose is bombastic in typical Stan Lee style, but the lessons in the book are clear, concise, and important principles. ...more
Genre: how-to
Intended audience: artists, aspiring artists, and comic lovers alike, ages 8+
Age range: realistically appropriate for readers ages 10+

Summary: In Chapter 1, Stan Lee and John Buscema provide lists of supplies and materials, and important vocabulary terms and techniques, necessary to draw one's own comics using the trademark Marvel style. Chapters 2-12 delve into technique, offering details about drawing with perspective, shaping bodies and heads, inking, cover art, page layouts, and
Jul 01, 2009 Eric rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: art
For good or ill, this book taught me how to draw figures. Over the years I kept going back to it and trying again, getting farther and gaining confidence. We'll see if it ever culminates in an actual printed comic of my own :) I'm sure it will, even if I'm 80 years old, sitting on the back porch, still holding onto the dream.
I loved and devoured this book when I was a kid (in the original edition). Alas, my drawing skills never quite developed and I put more energy into the stories than into the drawings. Still, it was a step on the path to making me an author, and I still think Buscema was one of the strongest draftsmen Marvel ever had.
Stephen Theaker
This got me drawing again for the first time since primary school, mainly by pointing out a few basic things I'd somehow never known - for one thing that drawings are things you can build, rather than just putting pencil to paper and creating masterpieces on the spot.
When I was in seventh grade, I studied this book from cover to cover and improved my drawing and visual storytelling skills dramatically. It was great then and remains so- John Buscema was an absolutely brilliant comics artist.
Michael Neno
It's funny (but not surprising) that How To Draw Comics the Marvel Way is marketed as being by Stan Lee and John Buscema when it's really John Buscema's art lesson all the way (it'd be like Marvel publishing a book called How To Write Comics the Marvel Way by John Buscema and Stan Lee).

In any event, the book is useful for aspiring cartoonists - probably more useful now than when it was originally published in 1978, since many recent mainstream cartoonists seem to have difficulty with simple, cle
Paul Smith
This book is great for those that want to learn more about creating comics. All of the techniques are presented in a straight forward manner and is easy to understand for those, like myself, who are not artistically inclined.
In my copy, a figure drawing of Sue Reed is covered in a grisly patchwork of crayon scribbles of clashing colors, and an action sketch of Spiderman delivering a punch is captioned "soprmarn" in a semiliterate scrawl.
Easily the best How to Draw book I've read. Lays everything out in an easy to digest manner... And back in the 90s when I read it, you really could see the difference with the Marvel style (not so much now though)
Russell Olson
This is an absolute classic. I was tempted to give it 3.5 stars, but that would be merely for the tone and not the content and that doesn't seem fair. Stan Lee is overly sanguine, but then, that's Stan Lee and it wouldn't be The Marvel Way without a bet of Lee's effervescence. The reason the sanguinity seems out of place is for the fact that drawing comics is hard and takes thousands of hours of practice and when I read this book as an eleven-year-old, my impression was that anyone, with the rig ...more
After reading The New Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain and practising my new skills copying several portraits, I wanted to get introduced in the art of drawing from imagination. So, I looked in a few forums on the Internet and this book kept appearing here and there. There isn't a more fanciful reason for my choice, I'm afraid.

The book didn't fulfil my approach for two reasons. The first one is that the book isn't very much for beginners. It does explain a bit about drawing the human figur
Rory Tregaskis
Really great book. I've always drawn little cartoons but never tried to draw properly. A few simple techniques and ways of thinking about shapes from this book have really improved my drawing. I'm still not very good but now I feel like I could be if I just put the work in.

Really recommend this, also it was only £10. All the other books of this type at Gosh Comics where about £30.
William Axtell
This book is great but not perfect. What it does give you is terrific drawing advice for the absolute beginner in all things pertinent to drawing comics and heroes. The basics of perspective are covered, along with plenty of rules of thumb and tips from drawing humans. And all this is delivered with drawings of Marvel's mightiest and the amusing words of Stan Lee. The downside is the inking section is rather brief and there is no discussion of colouring or letters (just to help, there are specia ...more
Sgt Roman Hunter
Apr 23, 2009 Mark rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: art
Seriously, one of the best how-to books on drawing (not just drawing comics) ever published. Looking past the overblown prose of co-author Stan Lee, the interested reader finds clear, pragmatic, and useful advice on all aspects of cartooning, from materials and lettering to panel composition and figure drawing. The text is illustrated with examples from many of the Marvel “bullpen” artists, but the best lessons come from co-author John Buscema, one of the underrated masters of graphic narrative. ...more
A bit basic but wonderful references. A very charming little book.
Awesome book for Marvel and drawing lovers
I wanted to be an artist as a kid, and I have folder after folder of my haphazardly drawn monsters and spaceships and superheroes. This book was my ultimate reference work, and I carried the old blue hardback (the cover had been lost early on) around with me everywhere. While I never attained my goal of comic artistry, I still have a copy (now paperback) of the book on my shelf. It's a nice resource for anyone interested in comics, whether you can draw like John Romita ... or if stick figures ar ...more
Aug 11, 2014 Barbc added it
Shelves: roveda-instore
Thomas Cardin
I lost my copy of this a few years ago. I really need to order a new one.

If you put this book in the hands of a kid as well as a sketchbook and a pencil--they are gonna start drawing!

There REALLY IS a Marvel Way. There are other ways to draw comics, of course, but I found the Marvel Way very inspiring.

This book, in combination with a good figure drawing and anatomy book will go a long way toward providing excellent fundamentals for the artist.
Leonard Kaufmann
I devoured this book in my formative years as I learned to draw by copying from my contemporary comic book masters. With no formal art training or exposure, I instead enjoyed the influence of comic book artists, and still have some of those old drawings. I owe much of my love for art and continued pursuit to comic books.
Rod Judkins
This book has taught so many people to draw. I found it incredibly useful. It actually keeps to quite academic drawing principles but makes it much more fun and enjoyable than most 'How To' books. It really helps you to understand the basic building blocks that make up the human figure. Essential for any one who wants to draw.
The book fills its intentions really well, which is teaching you how Marvel does their comics, and there is a formula. There are also some basics of art covered, and some basics of comics, but the focus is on the Marvel way, and for anyone who would like to draw for Marvel, this would be an invaluable starting place.
This book was assigned to me for an illustration class in college. The beginning of the book was very introductory understanding of perspective and other basic concepts on drawing. As the book moved on there were some very helpful lessons that I will be using for the rest of my career.
Charles Forsman
i give this 5 stars not because anyone should read it and seriously learn to draw from it(because it will take you years to unlearn it all) but because it's quite entertaining to read and look at. My favorite is where they show you how to properly draw ladies' butt cheeks the MARVEL way.
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Stan Lee (born Stanley Martin Lieber) is an American writer, editor, creator of comic book superheroes, and the former president and chairman of Marvel Comics.

With several artist co-creators, most notably Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko, he co-created Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four, the X-Men, Iron Man, the Hulk, Daredevil, the Silver Surfer, Dr. Strange, Captain America, and many other characters, int
More about Stan Lee...
Essential Amazing Spider-Man, Vol. 1 Marvel Masterworks: The Amazing Spider-Man, Vol. 1 Marvel Masterworks: The X-Men, Vol. 1 Essential Classic X-Men, Vol. 1 Marvel Masterworks: Captain America, Vol. 1

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