How to Draw Cartoons! (In General)
Ah! So you decided to come here an learn my most carefully
guarded secrets, eh? Well be forewarned! Those who dare to read
this page will find themselves ready to be assaulted by cute,
adorable, little wind-up plush bunny toys armed with nerph bats!
MUHHAHAHA! (*poit!*) ...sorry. Just kidding. ;-)
Well, less-see. As I said in the link to this page, the information
here isn't the most informative, but it's something that I've
prepared to at least help you in the right direction. Okay! Let's
Just Plain Visual-Aid:
- Cartoons on TV: What better place to look for
visual aid than your fave cartoons on television! Whether you're
into those classic Hanna-Barbera cartoons like Secret Squirrel,
classic 1980's cartoons like Heathcliff and the Cats And Company
cartoon and Transformers, or todays cartoons like MGM's Lionhearts
or Maurice Sendak's Little bear on Nick Jr. (That's CORRECT!
Even Little Bear!), all are great sources of visual aid!
- Cartoon Movies: Anyone who is anyone that can
tell you about any Disney, Don Bluth, or MGM animated flick,
is someone that has been to see them in the theaters and/or on
home video. The animation in these full length feature cartoons
are much more artistic, dramatic and life-like compared to the
television animation used in cartoons for tv. You probably see
this type of animation in commercials as well. (And speaking
of which, I ask myself, "Why do commercials have this type
of excellent animation and tv cartoons don't?" The answer
is simple! Disney, MGM or other tv cartoon companies spend money
on television animation because of its inexpensive investment
and most animation is done overseas to begin with since animation
made in the United States for cartoon series have gotten rather
- Comic Books, Fanzines, and Coloring Books:
Comics and coloring books have been out longer before the Internet
was even invented! Fanzines are amateur-published magazines by
independent persons or team of persons. What better way to find
what you want to see in print if well known comic book companies
like DC and Marvel don't have what you want to see!
- Websites on the Internet: Okay! Let's get up-to-date
with this new way of getting visual-aid! Ever since people and
entertainment companies began to publish websites on the Internet,
it's become the way for fans to get the ultimate in visual-aid.
Whether the website you're looking at is business or personal,
you're bound to find at least a few graphics there that really
catch your attention. Fan-artwork has been one of the most popularly
posted graphics on the World Wide Web among fellow fans alike
of whatever they are into. The only thing I'd like to add to
this, is that it can be a bit risky; there's the fact of copyrights
to take notice of since companies like Disney and Warner Brothers
are dead serious about their copyrights and property claims to
their created characters. The same goes for fellow freelance
artists as well. No one wants to see their own rights to their
The key element in the visual ad are the characters themselves.
Study their physical characteristics and look for key points to
their construction that you can add to your own characters or
when drawing fan-artwork. For example: Ever notice in all those
Disney films like the Lion King (1 and 2), Bednobs and Broomsticks,
and Disney's Robin Hood, that they always among certain animal
characters like lions, foxes, and wolves, they always have their
teeth (or a tooth) showing in a very certain style an manner?
That's exactly what I mean when looking for a key point!
Books on How to Draw Cartoons:
Ever since I can remember, there have been books on how to
draw cartoons from some of the most revered animators (like Preston
Blair & Don Bluth) and cartoonists (like Jim Davis, Johnny
Hart and Charles M. Schulz). Such books have been a great help
in developing my own cartoon style to what it is today.
There are books on How to Draw Japanese Manga/Anime that I
know of. Please be patient as I need to take note of their titles
Here's a great source of books that I can recommend; for these
are books that I have myself!
The Official "Learn to Draw" Disney Series
of Books (published by Walter Foster):
These books have helped me create the Disney/Don Bluth look to
my artwork that is obviously evident in most of my artwork.
- Learn to Draw Donald and Daisy
- Learn to Draw Uncle Scrooge, Hewy, Dewy and Louie
- Learn to Draw Mickey and Minnie
- How to Draw Disney's Aladdin
- How to Draw Disney's The Lion King
Books by Preston Blair (also published by Walter Foster):
These first two mentioned books were the ones I got my hands on
to self-teach myself how to draw the way I wanted to draw.
- ANIMATION by Preston Blair
- How to Animate Film Cartoons by Preston Blair
- Cartoon Animation by Preston Blair
(Sadly, Preston Blair died in 1995 at the age of 85. I proudly
post his book titles in honor of his memory and great work. You
will be sadly missed, but not forgotten, Mr. Blair).
Books by Christopher Hart (published by Watson-Guptill):
I've taken notice of Christopher hart's work in these instruction
books of his, and I can tell you right now, that you'd miss out
on a lot of useful information and visual aid if you don't by
any of them!
- How to Draw Cartoon Animals
- How to Draw Cartoon Animation
- Christopher Hart's Portable Action Hero Comic Book Studio
- Christopher Hart's Portable Animation Studio
Asking the Artist For Advice:
Matthew W. Peters
- Let's not forget the best way to learn about how to draw
in that certain style that you've liked or seen so much, is to
ask the artist himself, herself, or themselves! That's probably
the only way to get the actual information that you're searching
for when it comes directly from the artist's own mouth! Some
of you who are very eager to ask any such artist via e-mail or
letter, must not expect a prompt reply since such artists are
usually busy with their own artwork and domestic odds and ends
as well. But don't worry. You're bound to get a reply from the
artist you've contacted. And even if you don't, you shouldn't
let that bother you. Perhaps the artist is just too busy, they're
e-mail client/software is giving them problems, or simply they
just overlooked due to lots of work for them to do.
- And speaking of asking for advice, if you're interested in
asking me for advice, feel free to send me e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org,
or write me at my business mailing address:
P.O. Box 210029
San Francisco, CA. 94121 (U.S.A.)
The only thing I ask in return is for your patience. I cannot
guarantee a swift response via e-mail or a next-day reply via
conventional mail. I am busy myself after all. But I can guarantee
you a reply nonetheless.
TO THE INDEX
©2009 Matthew W. Peters. All Rights