Robert Fawcett: On the art of drawing

I just finished reading Robert Fawcett’s “On the art of drawing”.
It was alright.

Fawcett himself was an en exceptional draughtsman and a respected illustrator in his time, overcoming the obstacle of his colour-blindness with his incredible eye for pattern, tone and composition.

Illustration by Robert Fawcett from Sherlock Holmes. Look how busy this picture is! And yet it reads beautifully, with all sorts of little treats for your eye.

That said, his writing did not provide the insight  into his creative genius that I was hoping for.

Robert Fawcett is a great illustrator, but this is not a great book. His passion for the subject is clear, but I was hoping for more insight than I got, especially considering the length of the book.

One particular quote stood out to me:

“All this is perhaps a more complicated way of saying that drawing comes about by drawing, not by theory, not by shortcuts, and certainly not by eccentric experiment- but simply by drawing. Why students of the subject ever find comfort in reading about what is really a higher form of communication I will never know. That there is little comfort in writing about it, I do know”

Odd then, that he found the need to fill so many pages.