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

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  6,347 Ratings  ·  87 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 Spider-Man,
Paperback, 192 pages
Published September 14th 1984 by Touchstone (first published 1977)
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Greta is Erikasbuddy
Sep 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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
Apr 07, 2009 rated it really liked it
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
J.G. Keely
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
Aug 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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
Apr 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics
Was kinda surprised to bump into this book on GR while adding comics. I remember reading this, or rather looking through it when I was a little kid. Almost eight years ago. The thing is, I was a creative bastard back then. I used to draw stuff, build stuff, do stuff. I had tons of weird hobbies that I really really miss now. A lonely awkward kid living in a world of his own imagination. Life used to be good. God, I wanna relive those days.

This book brought back memories of those days. Reminded m
Jul 06, 2012 rated it really liked it
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
Jul 01, 2009 rated it really liked it
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.
Feb 22, 2009 rated it really liked it
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.
J.M. Giovine
Jun 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Obviously, this isn't a lecture as well, more like a practicing-tip guide for the comicbook artist to develop and improve the talent, getting the way that Marvel does it's work (at least, in the golden years) and it's narrated by Stan Lee himself. It doesn't get any better than that.
Paul Smith
Jan 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics
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.
May 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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)
Apr 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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.
Oct 05, 2009 rated it it was ok
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.
Stephen Theaker
Feb 19, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics
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.
Aug 07, 2017 rated it liked it
I'll come back to this one day - 3*

I would never have bought myself this book but my mam got it for me and I couldn't leave it so I had to have a go.

I'm definitely better at drawing because of this book but it is so time-consuming and I honestly don't gave the time for this. I really don't - balancing two jobs is hard enough! I'm annoyed that Black Widow's not there because really I wanted to draw her as part of my gift for a birthday present for a friend but I can't and I don't even have the sk
Alex Berg
Jun 10, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Pretty dated, and quite superficial in most of the topics covered, but still has some good information for beginners.
Maik Krüger
May 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
All you'll ever need as an artist. Basically my bible.
Nathan Conama
Mar 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
good book
Russell Olson
Dec 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
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
Lisa Feld
Dec 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: princeton
When I was a kid, this was really the only book available on how to draw superhero comics: the muscular physiology and combat poses, the foreshortening that makes skyscrapers or alien landscapes recede convincingly into the distance (or human beings move in three dimensions instead of kicking or punching straight out to the side), the camera angles that added intensity to different moments, and the tools and terms of the comics industry. It remains a clear, concise guide to the basics.

But it's i
Apr 16, 2014 rated it really liked it
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
Feb 07, 2014 rated it it was ok
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
Michael Neno
Jan 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: drawing-and-art
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
Sgt Roman Hunter
Oct 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Apr 23, 2009 rated it really liked it
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
Feb 09, 2008 rated it really liked it
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
Thomas Cardin
Aug 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
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.
Apr 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
Art was my second least favorite class in elementary school, beyond P.E., naturally. Then I checked this out, and it taught this math nerd (well, math nerd at the time) how to draw objects and people as forms based on cylinders, spheres, and cubes, not just their outline. I felt like it changed me overnight. As silly as it sounds, this book—along with Ed Emberley’s “Make a World”—changed my life when I was eleven.
B. Reese
Jul 31, 2015 rated it really liked it
Interesting book with some helpful tips and lessons. Ultimately though, like with most drawing books I found it hard to go through the exercises and when I did my poor results discouraged me from going further. It would be better if drawing books would somehow help you discover your style.

All in all, this is a good drawing book that has some good lessons and covers some of the important essentials and has good tips on using different techniques for action heavy artwork.
Leonard Kaufmann
Jan 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics
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.
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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, and many other characters, introducing complex,
More about Stan Lee

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