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You Can Draw in 30 Days: The Fun, Easy Way to Learn to Draw in One Month or Less
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You Can Draw in 30 Days: The Fun, Easy Way to Learn to Draw in One Month or Less

4.22  ·  Rating details ·  1,048 Ratings  ·  73 Reviews
Learn to draw in 30 days with Emmy award-winning PBS host Mark Kistler

Drawing is an acquired skill, not a talent--anyone can learn to draw! All you need is a pencil, a piece of paper, and the willingness to tap into your hidden artistic abilities. With Emmy award-winning, longtime PBS host Mark Kistler as your guide, you'll learn the secrets of sophisticated three-dimensi
Paperback, 256 pages
Published January 4th 2011 by Da Capo Lifelong Books (first published May 4th 2008)
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Nov 22, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: how-to, draw
This was my first "how to draw" book. Before using this book I could draw stick figures and ugly junk. After these 30 lessons I've drawn things that amaze me! This book boosted me well up in drawing options. Not via secrets or weird rituals though. Instead by simply explaining the fundamentals then providing accessible exercises to get the explanation into your memory. I flipped through several books in the "how-to draw" section and thought this one was the most clear and accessible. Plus, Mark' ...more
Jul 19, 2014 rated it did not like it
Terrible book. even the sample drawings are not good. The idea of the book is to give you shorthand for drawing, not teach you how to draw from what you see. Which is fine, if that is what you want, but some of the shorthand is wrong, placing a shadow between two objects (he does this with spheres and continues it) for example. In most instances there is a LIGHTER area between two spheres. So his drawing look really off. Then he shows planets and gets the shadows all wrong for where the light so ...more
Jul 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Are you a beginner who is tired of making sloppy stick man and weird houses? Do you think you can never learn to draw in your life? Do you wish you could make something better than a man consisting of one circle and some lines?

Go no further my friends. This book is the only book you need to change your destiny.

In one sentence, this book is a simple, easy, step-by-step guide that teaches you to draw from simple cube and spheres to a realistic eye and a gorgeous women; in 30 days.

I am extremely
Martie Last
Aug 22, 2014 rated it liked it
The book has some fun exercises that show basic tricks for drawing. However, it lacks a depth of explanations of fundamental or foundational drawing skills. It serves a purpose as an entertaining launch pad to improve drawing.
Min Yee
Nov 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: art-drawing
One of the basic skill of learning to become a self-taught graphic designer is drawing. This book was mentioned in one of the blogs and I started to learn to draw from this book.

I didn't do any drawings or sketches since I left my high school, which is almost 15 years. I always got a barely pass grade for my Arts subject during high school. Besides, my previous jobs never required a drawing skill. I always feel drawing is an innate talent until I started to learn drawing from this book which te
Aug 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
أعتقد أنني تجاوزت مرحلة تعلم أساسيات الرسم،لكنني أبحث عن مراجع جيدة لتعليم الرسم لأنني سأمتهن التدريب عما قريب،لي تجربة طويلة وسيئة مع الرسم وخبرة في "تأخير إتقان الرسم وتضييع الوقت"،اطلعت على هذا الكتاب في أقل من نصف ساعة لأن معظم الموجود معروف بالنسبة لي..أرى أنه كتاب رائع لتعلم الرسم ذاتيا مع الاستعانة باليوتيوب لأن الرسم يحتاج لرؤية حركة يد غيرك وهو مناسب لجميع المراحل،حتى لو احترفت الرسم ربما تجد بعض التفاصيل البسيطة التي لم تتعلمها أو لم تكن تهتم بها حين تعلمت الرسم.
Thomas Wolf
Jul 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Very encouraging tone to the book. It made me want to learn to draw. The final two lessons (the face and the hand) could have used some of the same detail of the earlier chapters. But I guess eventually, I can't depend on the book to tell me how to draw everything, but I'll have to go out and practice on my own. I felt like I accomplished something by staying with it.
Annabella Crafts
Jan 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
A few months ago I suddenly sparked an interest in drawing. I tried but I didn't know where to start so for Christmas I got this book along with a crap load of other art supplies. This book is great for a beginning but if you want to just buy one book and know a huge genera of topics, this isn't quite for you. It does have good details on cubes, spheres ect but not to much variety. Wasn't much of a problem for me but I do need to buy more drawing books. For this book, the student examples and th ...more
Mar 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is quite nice - it got me using my sketchbook again, which was my goal.
It has 30 chapters that build on each other and introduce drawing concepts in an approachable way.

Two things I didn't like: The tone is a bit too... American? for me - the author constantly says things like "this is AWESOME and you will LOVE it and will keep drawing circles ALL THE TIME because they are so FUN!!", and I found myself skipping those lines because they have the opposite effect on me. But if you leave out
John Glover
Jun 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I've just started working my way through this book for the second time. The book does a remarkable job of distilling what people have discovered about representing the 3-dimensional world on a 2-dimensional piece of paper into 30 well graded and structured lessons. I really can't find any faults - except that there doesn't appear to be a follow on book to take the budding artist to the next level.
If anyone knows of a book of this quality for figure/portrait drawing then please let me know.
Brett Anderson
30 drawing lessons that build well on the previous. It had been about a decade since I had done much of any sketching so this was a good refresher. The lessons will definitely start to take more than the 20 min advertised by midway through. I did about 23 lessons in 25 days and then let the rest drag out over a number of weeks.
Mar 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
My kids got for Christmas some "Scratch and Sketch" books from their aunt, and the books had animal/habitat facts with a drawing on the left page & a page for scratch-drawing on the right. My 4-year-old wanted me to sketch for him and he would choose the page and tell me to draw the gorilla, spider, etc. I was surprised to LOVE doing this and thought the pictures actually turned out nicely. (I still kinda want one of those books for myself.)

Enter *You Can Draw in 30 Days* which I found on A
Dec 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: how-to
It is a fun book. It has 30 lessons that teach you how to draw a particular figure. It is not traditional in the sense that you are not taught much about lines, or shading or tones, so if you're looking for that, this book is not for you.

I recommend this for those who want to get into drawing but don't want to dedicate too much time to it at first, and want to avoid feeling overwhelmed by it. By the end, I am less self conscious about my (def not brilliant) drawings, and have gotten quite a bit
Missy J
Dec 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
A very fun and easy to follow drawing book. I used to draw a lot when I was younger. This helped me to find my joy for drawing again. The first half of the book was strong, the lessons were very eye-opening. Towards the end, I didn't enjoy the concept of "tracing". Definitely recommend this for those who want to learn how to draw.
Nov 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
If you are a beginning artist, I would highly recommend this book. It's clearly written and shows you how to draw different things using basic fundamentals. I would recommend this if you are starting out.
Steve Savory
May 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great, no messing around lessons

Very proud of what I have achieved through the help of this book. The difference between day 1 age day 30 is amazing. As someone who has been interested in drawing this helped give me certain principles in a way that kept me engaged.
Hung Cao
Jul 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
For people who need to understand fundamental principles of drawing
Aug 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is the book that started me on my drawing journey.
Feb 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Im so happy I read this. It gives you so many tools. ...more
Dec 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children
I don't know how fun can this book be. It sure doesn't sound anything like fun. But it is a decent beginner book.
Jul 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is my first drawing book. I love it. It literally taught me how to draw. Thank you very much Mark!
David Phillips
Nov 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Good book and some good ideas to help draw
Jul 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Easy and quick way to learn to draw.
Jun 30, 2018 rated it liked it
I liked this book and I think I have improved however I don't think I can use the skills to be able to draw things from life. I can draw the things we learnt well but that's about all.
Jun 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
I picked up this book because I wanted to learn to draw of course. I have an idea for a webcomic and I don't know any non-flaky artists. I'm digressing. So I wanted to learn how to draw but sadly, I didn't finish the book's lessons even though I was only 10 lessons away.

The book did not lie. It made drawing easy and fun and I almost did it in 30 days. I think the biggest thing the book did was trying to change the noob (me!) mindset. Drawing isn't just a gift and you can train your eye correctly
Theo Karner
First some background, I have no experience or training (including any sort of short courses) in drawing; I picked this book for this very reason. I was looking for a book that would teach me the basics and not just give me examples to copy with no explanation or show me artists work that I couldn't possibly reproduce at my current skill level. This book was exactly what I was looking for.

Mark Kistler's easy going and confidence inducing style was encouraging throughout the book and he introduce
Sep 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is probably the only drawing book I've seen that introduces the fundamentals in the type of increments that lead to understanding them, instead of just cramming everything in a chapter that you'll just skim. This book takes you step by step through simple drawings, and then introduces the concepts while you're doing them. This is clearly a book for people who can't draw and are taking it up as a hobby, but if you're new to drawing then this is the book to start with. Probably the only book ...more
Marie S. Doss
Nov 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Only the second day and I'm amazed at what I've learnt! Just a few circles and I've turned to build rocks and boulders. This book teaches the importance of shading and what you can achieve by following a few basic steps. Great book for a beginner. Only my second day of practicing and I'm simply amazed at what I've drawn. Follow his rules and learn to draw the first day of reading.

I am teaching myself Pyrography (wood burning) but needed some help with my sketching, I found this book very helpfu
Erin Pieronek
I should as the book suggested worked on this everyday. Sadly I didn't. In fact I haven't finished yet even though I have had it for months. I plan too. I got to lesson 11. I really learned in the lessons I did. I do think it was odd that we never practiced a light source in more than one place but I did on my own. I just didn't have a reference to see if I was right. I got this book because I had signed up for a class that had a pre-requisite of a drawing class. I hadn't taken one in well over ...more
James Heiney
Jan 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is a great book for those who want to draw and don't know where to start. The book covers basics and moves on to more advanced lessons. The instruction covers important art concepts in an entertaining way. You'll be drawing from the first lesson and improving with each one as long as you practice.

You'll eventually have to learn to apply these methods to drawing things that you see around you, but for a starter book on drawing, you can't go wrong with this one.
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Mark Kistler teaches art. He has run thousands of elementary school workshops, written art books, and starred in the public television series The Secret City, The Draw Squad, The New Secret City Adventures, and the Emmy-Award-winning Imagination Station, all teaching art.

[author photo credit: Lois Bernstein]
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