What to Draw and How to Draw it

When I was eight, everyone I knew was impressed that I could draw a horse. When someone came to our school and showed us how to draw a mouse out of half a circle and a few lines I thought “I don’t need anyone to tell me how to draw a mouse.”

Recently, I read an article on Uppercase magazine about an illustrator called Ed Emberley, who had created an influential series of books about drawing for kids. Then I realized that those drawings look very familiar… Now I appreciate the opportunity I had to be present in his lecture all those years ago. In hindsight, I think his style did influence me significantly.

Below is a collection of instructional drawing books for kids found on archive.org:


“What to Draw and How to Draw It”, from 1913, is by author E.G. Lutz (who also wrote a book about animation that influenced the young Walt Disney):



Drawing Made Easy” by the same author, published in 1921:

  drawingmadeeasyh00lutz_0043 drawingmadeeasyh00lutz_0054


“The Public School Drawing Course”, published in 1892:



 “Amusement for Little Children; Drawing and Tracing Book”, published in 1898:



By Nurit Shell
Published July 9, 2013
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