Essential books for Aspiring Illustrators

Trying to find the perfect book for illustrators through an over-crowded market for books can be difficult. Trying to find books for guidance on taking illustration as a career, or even trying to find books to motivate can be difficult. Try searching illustration books on Amazon and the top books and you’ll be overloaded. And not necessarily with the correct books.

But don’t worry, I’ve filtered through my extensive collection for my favourite books for aspiring illustrators and artists.

Top 5 Books for Illustrators and Artists.

How to be an Illustrator by Darrel Rees

I first bought this book almost 10 years ago, back when I first realised I wanted to become an Illustrator. And, it’s still one of my favourite books to recommend. In the last 10 years, ‘How to be an Illustrator’ has been updated and republished to a shiny new second edition.

I haven’t got the new one, but if it’s anything like the original it’s filled with invaluable information. Featuring advice on job interviews; portfolios and self-promotion. It’s definitely high on my ‘Books for Illustrators’ list, whether your aspiring or already a professional.

Buy a copy here:**

The Illustrators Guide to Law and Business Practice by the A.O.I

Not enough people mention The Illustrator’s Guide to Law and Business Practice, but it really should be one of the top books for illustrators and artists. It’s filled with basic legal guidance, it even has a sample Terms and Conditions Contract for Illustrators that’s free to use and edit. Written by the Association of Illustration, they clearly know what they’re talking about. Filled with in-depth knowledge on the legalities of being an illustrator, you’ll be kicking yourself for not having a copy to hand.

It’s a definite must have book for illustrators and artists.

Buy a copy here:**

Figure Drawing for All it’s Worth by Andrew Loomis

Not necessarily a must-have for everyone, if however, you’re planning on drawing humans it’s definitely an amazing reference to own. First published in 1943, Andrew Loomis’s Figure Drawing book is still one of the best for teaching figure drawing. Actually a lot of figure books on the market actually just reiterate his techniques.

This book is ridiculously in depth and detailed, featuring the fundamentals and more complex subjects such as perspective, lighting and bone & muscle structure.

Buy a copy here:**

Steal like an Artist by Austin Kleos

Steal like an Artist is the perfect little bite-size chunk of inspiration. Filled with thought-provoking quotes and ideas; it’s the best book to flick through when you’re low on the ole motivation front. Written as easy to read short paragraphs, bullet points and quirky illustrations ‘Steal like an Artist’ is by far the easiest book to read and take it.

Buy a copy here:**

Graphic Artists Guild Handbook

Updated every few years, the Graphic Artists Guild Handbook is perfect to keep updated on the market price for illustrations. This one has actually been on my Wishlist for a while, the Graphic Artists Guild Handbook comprehensive reference guide for graphic artists and illustrators. Helping them navigate pricing, protecting their work and collecting payment for jobs.

Buy a copy here:**

Have you read any of these books? I’d love to know what you make of them, or can you make any other recommendations? I’m always on the look out for more books.

Thank you for reading! x

Stephanie Male illustration blog signature

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