Modern Cartooning: Essential Techniques for Drawing Today’s Popular Cartoons by Christopher Hart provides you with easy lessons on how to create cartoon style characters. This how-to book is perfect for any aspiring artist who wishes for the abilities to make their own cartoon scenarios. Whether you wish to be a cartoonist, animator, or closeted sketcher, this book can help you to improve your skills as an artist. In the first chapter, Hart shares several basic ways to draw essential body parts such as the head, mouth, eyes and nose using remarkably uncomplicated techniques. Along with additional tactics on how to make your characters stand out, Hart delves into the technique of reaction and expression. He demonstrates the concept that it is not as difficult as you might think to make your character appear astonished, disgruntled, excited, smug, or sheepish. It is actually considerably simple and you can do it too!
Throughout this book the author gives examples of various methods on how to customize your cartoon character. I find it fascinating that by merely changing the direction or position of the mouth or eyebrows one can completely change the character’s reaction and expression. I like how the author provides examples of the posture and stance of the character, which enables the reader to determine how the cartoon is feeling. I found his tutorials helpful because I sometimes have issues with transferring how I want my character to act from my mind to the paper. I learned several tactics from this book, despite the fact that I have been drawing for most of my life and I’m not exactley a beginner. I think that the methods taught can be applied to all artists at any level. Once I had made direct copies of the characters within the book, I was able to use his advice to successfully create sketches of my characters in my own artistic style! Although I enjoy sketching quite often, prior to reading this book, most of my drawings stood motionless and inactive. Modern Cartooning definitely helped me to make my art stand out and essentially pop to the viewer! The step-by-step instructions provided me with the knowledge to make my cartoons appear to interact and come alive on the paper. This book is well written, informative, and entertaining to read. I am certain that I will use this book as a reference whenever I am having difficulties with my artwork in the future. It is a quirky, hilarious, easy to follow and straight forward read that contains valuable instructions. Overall I highly enjoyed Christopher Hart’s Modern Cartooning: Essential Techniques for Drawing Today’s Popular Cartoons.