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DRAW MANGA (article first published : 2007-01-14)

For those of us unfamiliar with the world of Japanese culture, the word Manga sounds like a misspelling of a large orange fruit.

However, Manga literally means comics and the word is quickly being absorbed into the cannon of art. You must be familiar with those wide-eyed almost alien figures that seem to be taking over daytime childrenís television, dolls and action figures. They all fall under the umbrella of Manga which kickstarted this anime trend.

Draw Manga written by Sweatdrop Studios will teach you the basics of drawing the three-dimensional Manga characters, their anatomy through to accessorising, colouring, and providing different character interpretations even down to the fine lines on the hands.

Step by step tutorials show you that by using basic shapes and simple lines one can create characters from modern times to the scientific future and the medieval past with this expressive art form. Draw Manga even explains the correct tools and use of equipment, so that any artistically challenged person - like me!- can learn to draw.

Through a series of tutorials, Draw Manga teaches the visual grammar to create these lifelike depictions, while addressing the various genres of Manga and their drawing styles such as Chibi (super-deformed characters), Cartoon (cute characters), Shoujo (for emotional story lines) and Shonen (for action story lines).

This may all sound slightly daunting. Donít worry, though, the book is not overwhelming and shows you in intricate detail and simple-to-follow instruction how to achieve its objectives. There is even a colour wheel as well as palettes to get the relationship of your colour hues correct.

The book concludes by showing the reader a process of creating professional artworks using various mediums such as watercolour inks, etc. Draw Manga is a must have - whether you are a beginner or are already familiar with the style and would like to get up to date periodically.

Sweatdrop Studios in the UK is a group of 17 Artists who produce manga comics. Since the company started three years ago they have produced over 50 titles, including several anthologies. They are also involved in manga demonstrations and competitions at art shows and exhibitions. Draw Manga is a helpful and vital guide in all you need to know in understanding and drawing the art of Manga.

Draw Manga is published in soft cover and retails at R99.95. ISBN: 1845374169 Ė Kate MacIldowie




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