There are a number of books on sketching that I've come across, and while very good, I haven't seen one quite like 3D Total's Beginner's Guide to Sketching. This book is a well-rounded guide to learning the basics, on up to completing more advanced projects, with a generous dose of excellent tips from professional artists along the way.
Beginner's Guide to Sketching: Characters, Creatures & Concepts
Softback: 208 pages
Size: 8.5 in. x 12 in.
There are ten artists that contributed to this book. Each has their own approach and valuable insights to offer. The book is divided into four sections: Getting Started,Sketching in Color, Quick Tips, and Drawing Projects. The first section covers the tools and techniques, with good explanation on how and when materials are used. Then, you can follow along with some simple lessons to learn the fundamentals of drawing and shading, concept of value, blending techniques, drawing grip, etc. The section onSketching in Color builds on this, including the materials used and associated techniques, such as using colored pencil and watercolor pens.
The Quick Tips section is especially fantastic as it covers tricky bits like drawing hands, gestures, hair, fur, textures, etc. If I had to pick a favorite section, this would be it.
The last section on Drawing Projects is the largest portion of the book. Here, four different artists share their process from start to finish, and it is easy to follow along with the clear, step-by-step instruction. The projects are designed to teach drawing of individual characters and creatures and completing the scene by composition and environments.
Everything covered in this book is through the contribution of ten professional artists, with valuable tips throughout. I love the well-rounded content of this book and the layout is fantastic. I also really like the size of the book. At roughly 8.5 x 12 inches, the width makes it easier to leave open to the page you are following, and I think perfect for an instructional book like this.
At the price of $37.99 (USD), I think it is well worth a look.