Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Step by Step Drawing Book by Fiona Watts / Candice Whatmore, reviewed by Chitra Soundar


When I stumbled on The Step by Step Drawing Book by Fiona Watts, illustrated by Candice Whatmore, published by Usborne Books in a new independent bookshop called Bookasaurus in Melksham, Wiltshire, I thought it would be perfect for my 4 ½ year old nephew who loves to draw.

As I flipped through the pages I realised, it would be perfect for completely novice doodlers like me too. I bought a second copy so I needn't share mine with my nephew.

As a child, I never learnt to draw. But I was always a visual learner and loved illustrated books. One of the reasons I love reading picture books is that a lot can be told in pictures. If there was one thing I’d like to go back and fix if I ever got a time machine would be to learn the skill to draw, doodle, express myself in pictures. For now, I’m learning how to draw a time machine.

Until a few years ago, I never thought I could even attempt drawing. My skills were undeveloped and I knew about 4-5 things I learnt as a child that I could still draw. When my nephew was born and he liked drawing, I decided it was time to learn but this time I had company. I could draw with him. 

My Doodles of Things that go vroom..

I'm proud of this one I learnt to draw from Youtube.

Long story short, I’m still learning to draw and this book is perfect for me. It gives clear and simple instructions that can be followed by an expert 4-year old or a novice 40-year old. It has a selection of animals, people, things that go vroom… and more.


It’s a great book to share as a family and children can definitely get a sense of achievement drawing one thing at a time. And they have a lot of space on each page to practice until they get it right. Once they have learnt something, they can then go ahead and use that knowledge in a wider canvas - use it creatively to tell a story. That for me is a great reason for young people to use this book.


Although this book is part of a series where you can choose to draw lots of dinosaurs or lots of animals or different people, I like this one, which is an assortment of everything.


For an author like me who can’t draw, I’m hoping to practice some nice doodles so I can do them when signing books. So if you're like me and somehow grew into an adult who didn't learn drawing, there is no more any excuse not to learn.



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