Thursday, August 13, 2009

Lawrence Lariar Cartooning for Everybody

Lawrence Lariar was a cartoonist,educator and editor of the long running series Best Cartoons of the Year.

Lawrence Lariar wrote a nice little book titled Cartooning for Everybody in 1941.

After learning about this book in walt Stanchfield's recently published work, I started scouting for a copy and I was lucky enough to procure one in great condition.

Here are my impressions..

One quick scan of the book tells us so much about the depth of understanding of Lariar.

No wonder Walt speaks highly of Lariar. each page is packed with absolutely useful information. There is a great deal of emphasis on doodling, and carrying a sketch book.

I think this book defined doodling.

For great many of us learning to draw, the first steps are the most intimidating. How do you begin a drawing?, where do you start? whether you are drawing from life, photograph, or from imagination, this most important first step is often unclear.

Lariar, like other master teachers, who know what was happening in the head while one draws, tells you to always begin with a doodle. Unlike the conventional meaning of doodle, which is more like scribbling, Lariar means the doodle to be some kind of a template for all our drawings. A simplified pattern language that needs to evolve for each individual, to be used over and over, to produce remarkable consistency with ease.

There are some very significant teachings in these pages, on how one evolves a style, what one should focus while learning, what one can pass etc.

There are plenty of demonstrations on various aspects of cartooning, and he also covers quite a bit of how to go about making a profession out of this skill. This of course is 70 year old book. but much of the tips still seem to hold, in spite of fact that the world has slowly migrated into the Net.

True Gem of a book!