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How to Draw Lifelike Portraits from Photographs – Lee Hammond

October 28, 2009

how-draw-lifelike-portraits-from-photographs-lee-hammond-hardcover-cover-artIf you’re looking for a comprehensive, easy to follow guide to drawing portraits, How to Draw Lifelike Portraits from Photographs is it!

Lee Hammond’s book will take you from complete beginner to confident portrait artist in no time flat, something to which I can attest first hand!

When I first became interested in drawing, I didn’t take any lessons or go to classes. I taught myself through a combination of online tutorials and books from the library. This particular book is one that stands out in my memory as having a huge impact on my drawing ability.

More recently, I’ve signed this book out from the library again. I have a tentatively scheduled drawing class coming up and wanted some inspiration on how to start my lessons.

As I flipped through Lifelike Portraits, I was amazed at how much information I had retained and internalized. Much of my own drawing process comes from this book!

draw-lifelike-portraitsSince I’m a pack rat and have kept all of my sketchbooks, I can show you exactly how this book affected my drawing! On the left is a typical drawing of a face out of my imagination. Only a few pages later in my sketchbook, and after reading Hammond’s book cover to cover, I drew the girl on the right (who happens to be Liv Tyler). Still not a stellar representation, but a huge improvement on my previous portraits!

This book will take you right from the very beginning, starting with drawing tools and shading techniques, to individual lessons on each facial feature, different types of hair, and even how to draw clothes!

The entire drawing process is broken down into manageable chunks that are easy to learn, and each technique is clearly illustrated through Hammond’s own examples and portraits.

If there is a book that is more easy to follow, full of more information and more able to teach portrait drawing,  I have not found it!

Hammond has also written other drawing books including Lifelike Drawing In Colored Pencil, Drawing Realistic Pets from Photographs, Paint People in Acrylic, and many more!

I highly recommend this book to anyone who is wanting to get started with portrait drawing, or anyone who is wanting to take their portraiture to the next level!

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