How to Draw Cool Stuff

A Drawing Guide for Teachers and Students

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Pub Date 31 Jul 2017 | Archive Date 10 Nov 2022

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How to Draw Cool Stuff shows simple step-by-step illustrations that make it easy for anyone to draw cool stuff with precision and confidence.

These pages will guide you through the basic principles of illustration by concentrating on easy-to-learn shapes that build into complex drawings. With the step-by-step guidelines provided, anything can become easy to draw.

This book contains a series of fun, hands-on exercises that will help you see line, shape, space and other elements in everyday objects and turn them into detailed works of art in just a few simple steps. The exercises in this book will help train your brain so you can visualize ordinary objects in a different manner, allowing you to see through the eyes of an artist. From photorealistic faces to holiday themes and tattoo drawings,

How to Draw Cool Stuff makes drawing easier than you would think and more fun than you ever imagined! Now is the time to learn how to draw the subjects and scenes you've always dreamt of drawing.

How to Draw Cool Stuff is suitable for artists of any age benefiting everyone from teachers and students to self-learners and hobbyists. How to Draw Cool Stuff will help you realize your artistic potential and expose you to the pure joy of drawing!

How to Draw Cool Stuff shows simple step-by-step illustrations that make it easy for anyone to draw cool stuff with precision and confidence.

These pages will guide you through the basic principles...

Advance Praise

"An excellent book that is highly recommended to be kept in school libraries. It will be really useful during drawing sessions to guide students in a very practical and methodical way. Some of the ideas given are fun and unique and it is also a stress-free way of learning which makes it very useful guide for those who enjoy drawing and also for those who are trying to get into drawing." -- Art Supplies Hub


"With How To Draw Cool Stuff, you can learn step-by-step how to draw anything with confidence. My kids love drawing and are naturally talented when it comes to art, drawing, and painting. That being said, they both strive to make their drawings more realistic." --Akron Ohio Moms

"An excellent book that is highly recommended to be kept in school libraries. It will be really useful during drawing sessions to guide students in a very practical and methodical way. Some of the...

Available Editions

EDITION Hardcover
ISBN 9780999275801
PRICE $21.99 (USD)

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Average rating from 38 members

Featured Reviews

How to Draw Cool Stuff does an excellent job simplifying the basic principles of drawing for anyone starting at a baseline of zero or teaching novice artists. Shading, line quality, and foreshortening are presented with easy-to-understand examples. I like that throughout the book, the basic outline of shapes is illustrated, then how to add depth with shading and line quality is shown. Some of the more difficult to master shapes and concepts are minimally covered (hands, human forms, perspective), but those require more instruction than is the goal of this book. This is a great introduction to drawing with easy to accomplish exercises that will leave the burgeoning artist feeling successful and eager for their next steps.

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A great way to start or restart drawing. Every chapter has a section explaining WHY the skill or technique is important, a section to practice, and a list of Tips to help with more practice later. A great gift idea or just for myself.

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How to Draw Cool Stuff by Catherine V. Holmes is an excellent, instructional resource for beginner drawers. It covers a myriad of fundamentals of drawing and effectively expands on the importance of learning each skill. While there are certain elements that I would have liked to see more thoroughly (like the hands), I think that this book serves as a great tool for learners and teachers alike with a step-by-step process.

This book covers a spectrum of styles, subjects and perspectives!

Thank you NetGalley and Library Tales Publishing for the opportunity to read this ARC!

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A great resource for educators, this is a well structured resource for students to learn the basics of art and drawing. The author has a light hand and explains the process of learning to draw along with excellent illustrations and step by step instructions. I recommend it highly. My thanks to Netgalley, the publishers and the Author for the opportunity to read and review this book.

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I really enjoyed this one! The step-by-step exercises are simple and easy to follow, with a wide variety of subjects sure to spark the imagination and truly impressive results. It would be excellent to use in schools as well as at home. Just flipping through it had me eager to pull out my pens and try some of the exercises, and I had a lot of "oh, duh! That's how you draw that" moments.

I will definitely be trying out many of the exercises with my kiddo and in my own sketchbook. I would recommend this to anyone interested in improving their sketching, from beginners to more experienced artists. There's something here for everyone.

*Thanks to NetGalley and Library Tales Publishing for providing an e-arc for review.

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How to Draw Cool Stuff is a simplified tutorial drawing guide aimed at young readers by Catherine V. Holmes. Originally published in 2017, this reformat and re-release from Library Tales is 253 pages and is available in hardcover format in this edition, other formats available in other editions. It's worth noting that the ebook format has a handy interactive table of contents as well as interactive links and references throughout. I've really become enamored of ebooks with interactive formats lately. For Kindle Unlimited subscribers, this book is included in the KU subscription library to borrow and read for free, (as are the companion books in the series).

I'm an earnest beginner with drawing, sketching, doodling, and other graphic arts. Although firmly outside the target audience (young student and their facilitators), I found quite a lot of useful information here. The book has an accessible and direct style with information presented in an easy to understand format. Most of the lessons are divided into concepts (know), information (understand), and tutorials (do). Vocabulary and ancillary information are provided in each tutorial segment under their own headings.

The concepts are very simple and the tutorial lessons include blank areas on each page for students to practice and master specific techniques. The tutorials are grouped into thematic chapters: basic elements of design, human faces, perspective, holidays & seasons, animals & creatures, and cool stuff (treasure chest, skeletal pirate, pool of water, etc).

The book is laid out as, and would work very well as, lesson plan hand-outs for workshop or classroom use. This would also be a good choice for adults who spend time with young kids to improve their "draw with me" skills.

Four stars. Very simple but useful for classroom and home use.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

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I have mixed feelings about this book. Parts are very good at instruction, with a sort of class feeling to it. She walks you through drawing all kinds of things and they match up for various aesthetics, from skulls in hats to praying hands to Easter eggs to stopwatches. There are a lot of tutorials. They use the grid and shape method, where you draw circles and lines and then erase bits. That's not my favorite way to draw but I can just skip the first steps and draw the approximate shapes shown once the lines are erased.

My biggest issue is that each one goes from being a good very basic sketch of something to a realistic shaded drawing with no instruction at all about that part -- the "and then a miracle occurred" final step in so many art books.


That said, the basic drawing instructions are great and I did improve my ability to draw things like hands, eyes and objects. Another book in the series deals with shading and I imagine they should be read together.

I read a temporary digital ARC of this book for review.

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Thanks to the publishers for sharing this one. It's a handy guide that would be especially useful for teachers. My full review appears on Weekend Notes.

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This was a REALLY great book for anyone who wants to improve their drawing skills. There were so many great tutorials that can help you learn to draw tons of different stuff. The only thing I have to criticize is that the tutorials seemed kind of random most of the time. Like they were just randomly chosen without much thought or organization. Still a book I definitely recommend to anyone who is into drawing, though!

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Provides individual worksheets and step-by-step exercises that ask the student to engage creatively with a lesson plan for drawing. As an adult learner, I enjoyed using the worksheets, each of which built on previous lessons and which broke down complex figures in a way that felt intuitive. I also liked that the book asks the participant to engage creatively if they are comfortable doing so, and therefore felt like it wasn't asking me to copy lessons exactly. It was nice having the reinforcement that having my own "personality" show through my work was a good thing! Still, be aware that if you are an absolute beginner (*cough*like me*cough*), it may take you a while working through lessons before you get to draw the "cool stuff" referenced in the title ;).

While I received a digital copy to review and was able to easily follow along with the lessons, I could see the physical book working well for classrooms or for students who are having trouble. These teachers and students may find it easier to make copies or trace over the drawings in a physical book.

My thanks to NetGalley and Library Tales Publishing for providing an e-arc for review.

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Simple instructions that help you master the art of drawing “cool” stuff. Useful for beginners and more adept artists I found this excellent.

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I loved this book it has really handy tips and a large variety of subject matter is covered. It definitely shows you hiw to draw cool stuff. I recommend this book to new artists it has great tips for learning perspective and adding realistic touches to artwork.

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This is a great book for Children's Librarians, Programmers, and to just add to your nonfiction drawing collections. The drawings are simple enough that upper elementary school-age children can start using it, but is also a handy refresher for those of us that might not know how to draw something specific. I think that the best age group would be for middle grades who are just starting to find themselves as artists. Middle grade and upper elementary school teachers would also appreciate having this series of books in their classrooms. All in all, this is a great book to have if you are a doodler, librarian., or teacher.

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This is a great book for art teachers or for teachers who are encouraging art in their classes. The book is set up so that teachers can copy pages from the book and give them to the students to work on. I think that the lessons make sense and are placed in the book in logical order. My art level is at about a 3-5 year old, so I gave some of them a try hoping to up my game. I found a few a little difficult and I got lost in a few steps. I think that these lessons aren't just copy and hand out. The teacher is going to have to aid the student in some of the tasks, especially as the author says, while they learn to open up their brain to see the shapes of things.
I was able to make passable versions of the lessons that I picked out but on a few of them, I think having an artist to help me "see" would have definitely made me struggle less.
I think this would make a great addition to the curriculum of an art teacher, particularly those that are able to tailor their classes to allow several weeks to work on drawing.

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This is a good book filled with written and visual instructions on drawing everything from beginner items to more complex items such as a lock and key. This is a good book for the beginner, though jumps up quite quickly in some areas such as drawing people.

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*Disclaimer* I received this book free for review purposes, that said I only accept books I think I’ll like because life is too short to read bad books. Now onto the review:

This book is amazing. It’s designed to be a project book for teachers and/or students to learn how to draw many many things. It starts out with a small basics section discussing shapes, lines, shading, etc. Then quickly moves into actual projects to try.

Most projects are two pages. Page one is text that is broken down into 4 sections:
- “Know” covers the important facts you need to know about the current project
- “Understand” covers the concepts connected to the drawing that are important for you to understand
- “Do” covers what it is you should be practicing with the drawing in the section
- “Vocabulary” defines any relevant art terms you need to know and understand for the current drawing

The second page both tells you with text and shows you with pictures what it is you’re drawing. There’s about 3-12 steps per drawing. For me this is a perfect blend of text and pictures, so whichever way you learn best, you’re covered.

There’s a bit of everything here from food to people to buildings, holidays, anime, animals, etc. Since the digital review copies expire, I now own a print version.

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As someone who does not have a lot of experience with art, I felt this was such a helpful resource for all stages of artists. I appreciate the steps provided to help guide an artist towards completion of their project. I like the simplicity and the complexity of the projects, starting from the easy to follow steps, to challenging one's ability and skills.

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Thank you to Netgalley and publishers for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.

I love this book and the other one I was sent of the same name. I have fun doing some of the drawings and I plan to continue trying to do some of the techniques. I think this is a great book for all ages.

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My son loves drawing and absolutely loves any book that will teach him how to draw different things. He really liked this book and wants a physical copy.

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This is a really solid primer. It's nice that it provides explanations and not just line work. I'm just learning and found it pretty easy to follow.

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Maybe a bit wordy for younger students. Otherwise very educational. My 10 year old semi art prodigy was quite interested in the shading techniques and she said she doesn't feel she gets it right. I don't know what she's talking about, she's better than I was in college but it helped her to understand what she was struggling with.

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A great book for anyone looking to level up their drawing skills!

Easy to follow instructions and done in a simplistic way allowing a wide audience the opportunity to learn.

A sincere thank you to NetGalley and Library Tales Publishing for providing me a copy of “How to Draw Cool Stuff” in exchange for an honest review. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to read this story and leave my review voluntarily.

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This is an excellent book for those that are a beginner or even an intermediate. It gives vocabulary and descriptions of the art forms, but is mostly a step by step of a huge variety of drawings. They start out simple with a basic line drawing, but she takes you through the steps where the end result is very complex. For example, there are animals, human faces, skulls, banners, block lettering and hearts. These are only a few of the drawings; there are many, many more. By breaking down the shapes into simple forms, you will learn to “see” differently and take your drawing to a new level.

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