Thursday, June 4, 2020


The guy holding the pole caught a fish. He says he doesn’t eat fish and gives them all away.
Fishermen on Santa Monica pier, 1981
I made this sketch on location at the Santa Monica pier using a brush and ink to capture the late-afternoon edge lighting. Regardless of the local color of each form, I rendered anything in shadow as black and left anything illuminated by the sun as the white of the paper.
From "The Artist's Guide to Sketching, 1982


CerverGirl said...

Great sketch. I love how the shape of light areas is simply completed by the viewer’s eye/mind.

Vladimir Venkov said...

Such a beautiful dtawing James. You capture the volumes-forms so convincingly. I guess the people moved a bit so you had to invent some of the shadow shapes.

Stephen and Nyree said...

"The Artist's Guide to Sketching" is one of my favorite art books in my collection. This particular sketch reminds me of countless nights I spent on the Busselton Jetty in Western Australia. That jetty spans one whole mile out into the ocean, and I fished with many other people there for over a year on a regular basis. The light and shadow was so strong at sunset and sunrise when I often went to fish I tried to take photos but they managed to catch the amazing light effects. I wish I had been brave enough to draw those scenes back then.

Virginia Fhinn said...

I'm sure you get this question a lot, so, sorry to ask again... but... is this book going to be republished?

Carol said...

I recently reread my copy of "The Artist's Guide to Sketching". This book has been very useful and inspirational over the decades. But for republishing perhaps editing and updating would be required to reflect tools that have been become available since then. For example: waterbrushes, various types of mini palettes, water color pencils, etc. Though the basic principles of accuracy, mood, capturing motion and imagination are timeless.

nuum said...

My "The Artist's Guide to Sketching" never left my house.
Some friends asked me to borrow the book, but I didn't.
Some books I have will never leave my house...
Those airplanes caricatures in pen and ink are wonderful.

Hey Master, what about another book on Sketching?
Winsor, one of Thomas Kinkade's daughters is an artist too.
I saw her painting with you and Jeanette.
"The Artists Guide to Sketching - 40 years later" (2022)
by Winsor Kinkade and James Gurney

Paulo - Rio

scottT said...

A bravura piece of brush and ink execution. It's amazing how much information can be translated in a two value drawing.

Paul Sullivan said...

Great work, James!

Penny Taylor said...

That got me real excited... I clicked the link and rushed right over to buy the book. Sadly, I wasn't drawing in the 80s, so I didn't buy it then... it not only would have been wonderful wisdom & instruction, but a solid investment. Couldn't find it now for less than $200+ & up to $500... well, dang... ;-)