If you want to be a good cartoonist, there are lots of books out there to help you along the way. These are a few of my favorites.
by Preston Blair
There's a reason Preston Blair's instructional books have been in print in some form for nearly 60 years: if you study them, you will be a better cartoonist. He teaches the fundamentals of construction, layout, character types, appeal, and so much more. Whether you're a CGI animator or a comic strip cartoonist, absorb the concepts in this book and you'll have a strong foundation.
edited by Bill Blackbeard
Not only is this book huge, it's beautifully put together. It's the kind of book you'll want to preserve for your grandchildren. It contains a cross-section of comic strip history from the turn-of-the-20th Century through the 1970s. Gaze in wonder upon the gorgeous work of Winsor McCay, George Herriman, and many more. On a side note, anytime you see the name Bill Blackbeard on a book, you can bet it's worth a read. Hopefully someday his essays on comics will be collected in one place.
by Scott McCloud
McCloud's other books on comics are great, too, but this one gets into the nitty-gritty of actually creating sequential art and stories.
by Will Eisner
Will Eisner's influence on comic books cannot be overstated. He makes it all look so easy in this book, but once you begin to apply his lessons, you'll see how much hard work and brain power is involved in drawing a comprehensible story.
by Hank Ketcham
Composition, appeal, and style. Ketcham was a master at all three, as evidenced here.
Recommending books so good, they'll keep you up past your bedtime. more...
About Adam "Ape Lad" Koford
Adam Koford is an improbably prolific cartoonist who has been involved in several projects including "700 Hoboes" and "Conan vs. Bear." He has been featured on Boing Boing TV and is a regular contributor to Drawn.ca. He has a webcomic called "The Laugh-Out-Loud Cats," which can be found at HOBOTOPIA.com. His second collection of comics, entitled The Laugh-Out-Loud Cats Sell Out, is available now from Abrams ComicArts.
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