CARTOONING FOR KIDS by Carol Lea Benjamin


Email this review


Definitely not a proponent of the POW and ZAP school of cartooning, Benjamin may help to prod timid and unimaginative kids into trying their hands with a pencil--but she'll disappoint kids looking for drawing lessons or comic-strip tricks. She begins with step-by-step instructions for making pig, cat, rabbit, bear, dog, and human faces from a circle; shows how to change expressions with mouth and eyebrow lines; and later, in a short chapter called ""Body Basics,"" shows her pig, cat, rabbit, and other animals complete and standing upright--but without the step-by-steps. Except for the reasonable advice to begin with the fewest possible lines, then add the subject's special characteristic, and more questionable advice about tracing from comic books or one's own pencil sketches, the book is a guide to getting ideas: narrow your subject, experiment with many sketches and ideas, do modern twists on old tales (e.g., the three little pigs in a condo), and devise new pictures for old lines. (Cave kid with dinosaur: ""Gee, can't I keep him? He followed me home."") Benjamin makes all her sample cartoons simple and loose and devoid of personal style, which might serve undemanding beginners. But there is no verve or humor in the drawing itself and no mention or evidence of visual messages or dynamics.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1982
Publisher: T. Y. Crowell