Secrets to realistic drawing

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    Secrets to Realistic Drawing.Copyright 2006 by Carrie Stuart Parks and RickParks. Manufactured in China. All rights reserved. No part of this book may bereproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means includinginformation storage and retrieval systems without permission in writing from the

    publisher, except by a reviewer who may quote brief passages in areview. Published by North Light Books, an imprint of F+W Publi-cations, Inc., 4700 East Galbraith Road, Cincinnati, Ohio, 45236.(800) 289-0963. First edition.

    Other fine North Light Books are available from your local bookstore, art supplystore or direct from the publisher.

    DISTRIBUTED IN CANADA BY FRASER DIRECT100 Armstrong AvenueGeorgetown, ON, Canada L7G 5S4Tel: (905) 877-4411

    DISTRIBUTED IN THE U.K. AND EUROPE BY DAVID & CHARLESBrunel House, Newton Abbot, Devon, TQ12 4PU, EnglandTel: (+44) 1626 323200, Fax: (+44) 1626 323319E-mail:

    DISTRIBUTED IN AUSTRALIA BY CAPRICORN LINKP.O. Box 704, S. Windsor NSW, 2756 AustraliaTel: (02) 4577-3555

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    Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication DataParks, Carrie.Secrets to realistic drawing / by Carrie Stuart Parks and Rick Parks.

    p. cm.Includes index.ISBN 1-58180-649-3 (alk. paper)ISBN-13: 978-1-60061-572-6 (EPUB)1. Drawing--Technique. I. Parks, Rick. II. Title.

    NC730.P25 2006741.2--dc22 2005012853

    Editors: Layne Vanover and Stefanie LaufersweilerProduction editor: Erin NeviusCover designer: Wendy DunningInterior design and production artist: Barb MatulionisProduction coordinator: Mark Griffin

    Metric Conversion Chartto convert to multiply byInches Centimeters 2.54Centimeters Inches 0.4Feet Centimeters 30.5Centimeters Feet 0.03Yards Meters 0.9Meters Yards 1.1Sq. Inches Sq. Centimeters 6.45Sq. Centimeters Sq. Inches 0.16Sq. Feet Sq. Meters 0.09Sq. Meters Sq. Feet 10.8Sq. Yards Sq. Meters 0.8Sq. Meters Sq. Yards 1.2Pounds Kilograms 0.45Kilograms Pounds 2.2Ounces Grams 28.3Grams Ounces 0.035

    ABOUT THE AUTHORSCarrie Stuart Parks and Rick Parks met in the romantic hall-ways of the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia. They marriedin 1989 and formed a dynamic and successful team in theirforensic and fine art endeavors, developing composite draw-ings of suspects in major national and international cases, aswell as creating exquisite watercolors and stone carvings. Theytravel across the United States and internationally to teach one-week composite drawing courses to a variety of participants,from large law-enforcement agencies to small, two-personpolice departments, from Secret Service and FBI agents tointerested civilians.

    Carrie has won numerous awards for her innovative teach-ing methods and general career excellence and is a signaturemember of the Idaho Watercolor Society. She is the author andillustrator of Secrets to Drawing Realistic Faces (North LightBooks, 2003). Rick has received national recognition for hisexquisite art placed on musical instruments.

    Carrie and Rick reside in North Idaho and may be contact-ed through their Web site at or by e-mail at

    Page 23 art:

    Corinth, Greece 14" x 17" (36cm x 43cm) Graphite on bristol board

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    ShirleyGraphite on Crescent Lin-Tex board

    12" x 9" (30cm x 23cm)Dedicated to the memory of Shirley Marcey Parks

    AC K N O W L E D G M E N T SThis book started out so well, but Rick and I ended up with amonster of a year. Wed like to gratefully thank the fine folks atNorth Light Books who were so gracious when we needed itmost. Thank you, Pam Wissman, for your wisdom in gettingour book proposal through the proposal committee. Thanks toBethe Ferguson for your support and encouragement. Thankyou, Layne Vanover, for the most difficult work of initial edit-ing. A very special thanks and a bottle of something to StefLaufersweiler, who gave up a portion of her life to bring in thisbook and edit it so very well.

    The people featured in the book deserve a hug and thanks:my brother Scott Stuart, Ethan Stuart, and Pastor Ashley Dayand his lovely wife, Edna.

    A big frog sticker goes to our students who so generouslycontributed their work: John Hinds, Sheila Tajima-Shadle,Greg Bean, Ken MacMillian and Matt Tucker. If you are inter-ested in their work or prints, contact us through our Web siteat

    We had so many people who were with us in heart, bodyand spirit this year that it would take the rest of the book to

    thank them. Wed like to single out a few and give them a spe-cial note of gratitude: my Art Camp ladies, Mary Ellen, Bren-da, Toni, Marilyn, Judy, Pat, Elvie, Debby and, of course, MissPenny; hugs and thanks to Evelyn, Ron and Gina Prindle, LoriBishop and Debs Laird; lunch and a hug to Shane and MerlinBerger, Frame of Mind Gallery.

    Rick would personally like to thank Dan Fleshman, his highschool art teacher who told him that he could make art acareer if he tried when others said he couldnt. Thanks toHorace Heafner who, as his mentor, provided Rick with theultimate example of a professional artist and a Christian gen-tleman. Many thanks to Bill Emerson, who allowed one of hisbiggest fans to grace his musical endeavors with his art. Loveand thanks to Don Parks, who for nearly fifty years has contin-ued to teach him the meaning of strength, determination andhard work: Youre my hero, Dad.

    As always, eternal thanks, a world of love and a big noogieto Frank and Barbara Peretti. Finally, and most importantly,thank you to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

    DE D I C AT I O NIn Virginia in the early 1960s, my mother watched as I starteddrawing the world around me. She saw not only my love of artbut also an ability to excel in it. For the rest of her life sheoffered constant encouragement and, more importantly, shenever discouraged me in my dream of becoming an artist.

    Its because of her that I used my art on some of Americasbiggest cases, taught thousands of others to draw and helped toproduce the book you now hold in your hand. Her example ofencouragement to me as an artist is the most important lessonin this book. God bless you, Mom.

    Rick Parks

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  • TA B L E O F CO N T E N T S


    !The Right Stuff 12If you want to become an artist (and look the part!),

    you must arm yourself with the right tools. Find out

    exactly what you need, from pencils and erasers to

    sources of inspiration.

    $ So the Problem Is 28Understanding the role your mind plays in drawingand the roadblocks it can throw your wayis the firststep to becoming a successful artist.

    %Making Your Mark 38Good drawings begin with solid technique. Learn how tomake your mark, then how to blend and erase it to makeyour drawings look realistic.

    Q Site 50This is just another way of saying proportion and scale. Dis-cover how to make these correct in every drawing you do.

    W Shape 64Drawing is all about observing. Learn how to look at theshapes that make up your subject and translate what yousee into an accurate depiction.

    E Shading 78You could merely call this the icing on the cake, but itsso much more than that. Bring your drawings to life withdetailed shading.

    RDrawing Practice 94Its time to face the drawing board head-on. Apply every-thing youve learned by trying your hand at several step-by-step projects.


    INDEX 126

    TA B L E O F CO N T E N T S

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  • Ethan StuartGraphite on bristol board17" x 14" (43cm x 36cm)

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    IN T R O D U C T I O N

    So many times I have heard some-one throw down the swordmake that the penciland issuethis challenge to me: Yeah, but youcant teach ME to draw! Yes, I canteach you to draw, even if you cantdraw a straight lineor draw bloodwith a knife. Youre reading this book,which means youve met the only cri-teria I have: a desire to learn.

    Drawing is a very learnable skill. Ifyou havent learned to draw, yourdrawings are weak or some art teachertold you to take up knitting instead,you just havent had the right instruc-tion. Im not promising that youllbecome Leonardo da Vinci by the endof this book, but I do believe you willdraw better than you have ever hoped.All you must do is apply (and prac-

    tice!) the drawing tools taught in thisbook. Youll soon discover that learn-ing to draw is less about talent andmore about learning to perceive theworld around you differently.

    Getting ThereMy own artistic journey is just color-ful enough to make for a good, andhopefully inspirational, story.

    Id always found certain types ofart easy. That is, I could look at somethings and somehow draw them fairlyaccurately. I grew up in a small min-ing town in northern Idaho where thepublic school system could barelyafford textbooks, let alone an artscurriculum. My parents did the bestthey could to encourage my talent,but when I announced that I was

    Apple BlossomsGraphite on bristol board14" x 17" (36cm x 43cm)

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    going to be a professional artist, theycould barely mask their horror. Artwas fine as a hobby, but a career?After much soul-searching, they brave-ly sent me off to a nearby communitycollege to study commercial art.

    I soon found myself floundering.Lessons consisted of the professorsplacing a mess of white shapes on atable and having us draw them. Whiteballs, white shoes, white drapery and,well, more white stuff. I could neverfigure out the point. What is so spe-cial about white? Then we got topaint. We did paintings of the whitestuff in the primary colors of red, blueand yellow. Egads! I just wanted todraw something that really lookedlike something.

    After a year of not getting it, Ichanged majors and figured my artcareer was probably going to becomea hobby after all. I envisioned myselfas a gray-haired lady puttering with

    bad oil paints on Saturday mornings.For several years I drifted from col-lege to college and major to major. Ibecame the consummate professionalstudent.

    Then one day I attended a galleryopening of watercolor paintings. As Iwandered around the room studyingthe paintings, it hit me: I can do this! Ican paint at least this well. So whatwas the difference between this artistand me? How did she get her own artshow and not me? My husband drylyprovided the answer: She did it. Shetook the time and effort to actuallycreate enough art for a one-womanshow. I made up my mind then andthere that I was going to be an artist,too, despite my collegiate setbacks.

    The Story ContinuesAfter some time as a watercolorist, Ifound myself developing a fascinatinguse for my drawing skills: I started

    working at a crime lab as a forensicartist. Part of my job was sketchingcrime scenes. I would love to tell youthat I was originally hired to workthere because I was a brilliant artistwith the crime-solving ability ofSherlock Holmes, but that would bestretching it. In 1985, I attended ashort course on composite drawing atthe FBI Academy in Quantico,Virginia. Composite drawings are theWanted drawings you see of crimi-nal suspects on the nightly news. Theyare usually created by combining sep-arate facial features that the victim orwitness of a crime selects from a bookof faces. The composite is used toidentify an unknown suspect. I wasinvited to the course only because theFBI wanted participants from a vari-ety of regions throughout the UnitedStates. My face-drawing skills werestill dreadful at this point, but I wasinspired to improve.

    Ir ish WolfhoundGraphite on bristol board14" x 17" (36cm x 43cm)

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    I worked hard and paid attentionto what it would take to do a goodjob. I became Carrie Parks, PencilSleuth. I loved drawing faces andbecame addicted to forensic art. Ifinally finished my college degree witha double major in social science andartwith honors, no less. My mottowas, I have a pencil, and Im notafraid to use it!

    Now my husband and I travelacross the nation teaching compositedrawing and forensic art courses. Wehave taught all kinds of people of vary-ing skill levels, from FBI and SecretService agents to civilian adults andchildren. We have won awards for ourteaching methods, and Ive even writ-ten a book exclusively on drawingfaces. And to think, at one point Ithought art could only be a hobby!

    So, the Point of This Is You, too, can realize your dream ofbecoming an artist if you set yourmind to it. This book aims to teachyou what it takes to do just that. Imnot going to set a bunch of stuff infront of you and expect miracles.Instead, Ill cover all the essentials,

    If its meaningless to you, youll neverlearn. Art needs to be stepped out,explained and demonstrated. If it wereas simple as just drawing something,you would already be doing it!

    Focus. The artists who develop thebest drawing skills usually have thebest observational skills. This meanshaving an eye for the details as well asthe overall picture. This takes concen-tration and training but is well worththe effort.

    Practice. To be good at anything, youneed practice. One of my studentswas so thrilled by his new skills thathe started drawing everybody, every-where. I believe he had a sketchbookfirmly in hand wherever he went. Ofcourse, he is a fantastic artist nowbecause he practiced his skill.

    Talent. Some artists may have it, butyou dont have to have natural talentto draw well. In my opinion, it takesfar more training and skill develop-ment than actual talent to become asuccessful artist. Anyone can learn todraw by applying her desire and inter-est. Ill supply the good instruction ifyou focus on and practice what yourelearning. Everyone will then be con-vinced that you had talent all along!

    SwordGraphite on bristol board14" x 17" (36cm x 43cm)

    teaching you the secrets of realisticdrawing one step at a time. Beforeyou know it, youll be turning out pic-turesque landscapes, stellar por-traitsany subject that you like!

    In my many years of teaching art,Ive discovered that there are certaincharacteristics that define success asan artist. My short list is as follows:

    Desire. Desire doesnt just mean want-ing something, but wanting it badlyenough that youre willing to try a dif-ferent approach to get it. At first, youmight not like it, might not do welltrying it, or might not find it useful,but still you are will...


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