Monday, June 23, 2014

How to Draw Rockets & Spaceships (1958)

Probably not a children's book but I imagine a child finding this and learning how to draw their favorite stuff. Certainly I would have cherished this one if I had seen it at the right age (back when we decorated our notebooks).

Sargeant, Charles. Illustrated by Sargeant, Charles. How to Draw Rockets and Spaceships. London : The Studio Publications. (64 p.) 18 cm. (1958) 

 An unusual "children's" book, it is dedicated to "The Spaceship Pilots of the Future".  Straightforward text on drawing, shadow, perspective etc. with short sections on rocket theory and the future of space travel. It has very nice drawings of rockets, space stations, Moon landers and a moon base. Worth seeking out for the beautiful art. Part of a series of "How to draw" books. (How to draw, no. 43.)

What I enjoy most is that it gives you some basic art techniques to start but then much of the book is "inspiration" and examples of what you could draw. These examples are beautiful.

Charles Sargeant did a very nice job with the text describing the scenes he drew. He seems to have had some interest in manned space flight so the book reads like a guide for both non-fiction and fictional illustrations.

I have not been able to find out very much about him except this book and a science fiction novel of the time that he illustrated.

These illustrations show how perspective can be changed to create some dynamic illustrations.

Finally I love this flying car.  Most illustrations just show them going downtown but this one really can take you places!


  1. WOW! What a great find. You're right: there's a lot of enthusiasm in those drawings and it shows.

  2. Nice artwork - doubtful they were for children as most look like draughtsman type of work.