Face Off: How to Draw Amazing Caricatures and Comic Portraits – A Book Review

If you’ve been to a street fair or amusement park lately, you may have seen a caricature artist in action. People stop to have their comic portraits drawn in a cartoon style, often with very large heads and tiny bodies doing something funny. If you’d like to learn how to draw these types of drawings, the book, Face Off: How to Draw Amazing Caricatures and Comic Portraits, by Harry Hamernik, can help.

Most books on how to draw caricatures are from famous artists who have done many celebrity portraits in the past. Artists like Dick Gautier and Lenn Redman are two of the better known ones. But their styles are a little dated, and you might be looking for something more applicable to modern style.

The book starts by discussing materials and supplies you will need, including pencils, paper, markers and color pencils. I like the instructions for a do-it-yourself lap easel, which can be made cheaply if you have very basic handy construction skills.

It then covers marker, pencil, and colored pencil techniques. These include how to not get fuzzy lines, varying your lines, working with value, and color blending. Then he shows how to color a portrait using pencils and even some computer coloring techniques.

He presents a specific process for drawing a portrait and encourages you to draw ten faces every day for twenty days in a row before trying to sketch someone. You need to know how to do the process of a caricature first, without getting stuck, before you can then add the difficulty of trying to make it look like someone.

The next section covers how to draw specific features. He gives several sample face shapes and examples of noses, eyes, hair, etc. There are multiple helpful hints and tips scattered throughout, such as this one about eyes: “A larger iris will make your subject look younger. Think Bambi.”

He also discusses and explains distance, anchor, and pivot points. These are key when drawing portraits, because the tiniest change in details can make your caricature look like the person or not. Drawing a likeness is extremely difficult.

The rest of the book contains two large sections, one for 3/4 view portraits, and one for profile views. These, like the section on face forward portraits, give lots of examples, tips, and tricks.

There is a great sampling of different facial types and a fair range of ages, although there are no older people at all. But there are some with glasses, a head bandana, jewelry, and facial hair, the sorts of things that can trip you up.

Overall, this is an excellent overview if you are wanting to learn how to draw in this style. Face Off: How to Draw Amazing Caricatures and Comic Portraits, by Harry Hamernik will get you started in the right direction.

San Francisco is the Most Photographed City in North America – A Book Review

The Golden Gate Bridge towering over San Francisco Bay as the fog clears, a testament to mankind’s will to overcome adversity, and a symbol to all of a great city. Perhaps, there is no other bridge in the world that captures the human spirit and imagination and there is definitely no city more photographed in the last 100 years than San Francisco. Some say that Las Vegas is more photographed, but mostly people buy post cards there and are too busy being tourists and gambling to take pictures.

Now then, what if I told you that you could have a beautiful collection of pictures of San Francisco, really classy professionally done photographs by the top photographers of our time? What if I told you that you can have all this one awesome coffee table book? Well, it’s true, and the book I describe, I own myself, the book is:

“San Francisco – Photographs by Morton Beebe” with essays from Herb Caen, Tom Cole, Barnaby Conrad, Herbert Gold, and Kevin Star.

This awesome collection has over 200 high-quality extra large photographs and everyone captures the human spirit of San Francisco. Museums, nightlife, beaches, harbor, tourist attractions, trolley cars, row houses, bridges, events, and people. It’s all here, along with lightening, moonlight, sunrises, neon lights and sailboats on the bay. The restaurants, the sights, the hotels, the architecture, it makes San Francisco look like the greatest city in the world.

This is a must have keeper of a photography table book. Now you might ask me what are the cons to this book, I mean I’ve just described how great it is. Well, one of the cons of this book is that it is very heavy, because it is so packed with high quality pictures. Think on that and get a copy today for your family too.

Worth Every Penny Book Review

As a business owner of a home-based photography studio, I find that constant education is vital to the continued growth of my business. There are a variety of forms of education for photographers and other business owners: conferences, classes, local meetings, or books being a few. Books are often one of the cheaper forms of education and I find a lot of great insights from books like Worth Every Penny.

Worth Every Penny is a business book written by both Sarah Petty and Erin Verbeck founder and chief of The Joy of Marketing. This book is targeted toward small business owners running boutique style businesses. While bigger businesses are focused on volume, boutique businesses are focused on experience and high-end, quality products. This book helps boutique business owners understand some of the keys necessary to running their boutique business.

Worth Every Penny gives great advice on how to build a strong brand to market to your ideal client base, which is crucial in a boutique business. It’s importance to convey luxury and a high-end experience to your current and feature client base. The book also discusses strategies for creating a strong marketing and advertising campaign to reflect this idea and what makes your business unique. It is always important to convey what makes your business different and more desirable than your competition.

A huge part of boutique businesses is building relationships. When you aren’t working with a high volume business, you have the time to invest in getting to know your clients. Worth Every Penny discusses ways to convey your appreciation to your customers and develop strong relationships with them, which can help grow your business.

And of course, with the extra time, value, and care dedicated to the customers of a boutique business, a higher price is often a necessity. Worth Every Penny discusses methods for pricing your products and adding additional value to your clients orders. After all, to be a viable business, you need to make a profit.

I personally found Sarah Petty & Erin Verbeck’s book, Worth Every Penny, to be incredibly beneficial and insightful in working on my own business. Determining my strengths and unique products, how to market them and provide my clients with the best care possible are incredibly important to me, and this book has helped me narrow down and hone these things. I would highly recommend this book to any boutique business – not just photography business owners!