If I had to list the books I reference most often for my artwork and for inspiration, it would look something like this:
- The Art Spirit by Robert Henri. A must read for all artists. I've had my copy since my days at RISD. Great inspirational work about art and life.
- Drawn to Life, Volume 1 and Volume 2. A recent addition to my library. Fantastic collection of lectures by Walt Stanchfield (master Disney animator - influenced the likes of Brad Bird and Tim Burton)- not just for animators but for anyone interested in drawing.
- The Thinking Eye and the Nature of Nature by Paul Klee. Klee - one of my top four favorite artists of all time (Wassily Kandinsky, Pablo Picasso, and Alexander Calder are the other three). I was very fortunate as a student to have a part time job at the RISD library. One of my favorite tasks was reshelving the books housed in the locked case section (hundreds of rare volumes, include first editions and handmade artist's books) which is where I discovered these books and would return on my days off to read at leisure. A few years after graduation when I was living in Seattle and in between jobs, I happened to walk past a bookstore that had a set in the shop window. Apparently, there was a limited print run in the early 1990's - it was the only time I saw them available in a store since. One of the best purchases I have ever made - although at the time since I was unemployed it was probably not the most practical expense (but I would do it again if given the chance!).
- Wassily Kandinsky's Concerning the Spiritual in Art. A call for abstract artists. Like Klee, Kandinsky was interested in portraying the inner life. Excellent read.
- Master Class in Figure Drawing by Robert Beverly Hale. Learning anatomy from studying the great artists through the eyes of one of the best instructors on the subject.
- The Artist's Complete Guide to Facial Expression by Gary Faigin. A practical reference book that I utilize often, especially for illustration and polymer clay work.