As a kid, I remember checking out drawing books from our school library to teach myself how to draw everything from famous cartoon characters to buildings to vehicles to animals. Many of the books that I had learned from were done by Lee J. Ames. Ames was known for his Draw 50 series. I remember spending hours as a boy, pouring over each step to recreate cartoon characters like Popeye, Scooby Doo and Fred Flinstone. I worked feverishly to draw the Empire State Building or a stegosaurus or an eagle.
When Cava first expressed an interest in learning how to draw, I, of course, got out all of the Lee J. Ames books I had kept from my own childhood. He didn't have much desire to draw the cartoon characters, as many are too old for him to know or care about. But he loved my other books, especially Draw 50 Birds.
Like myself, Cava followed each step by step progression until he created the finished drawing of each bird in that book. When he had drawn all 50 birds, he started back at the beginning and went through them again and again and again. He told me that he wanted to be just like John James Audubon one day.
Now he's begun the series Draw 50 Sea Creatures.
What he loves most about Ames' series is that they provide simple, easy step-by-step guide. As a child who loves such instructions, he tries to draw them as closely as the examples provided.
Despite this book being sea creatures, Cava immediately started with the few birds that are in this collection (penguin, puffin and pelican).
It's a great book for young kids who are just beginning to want to learn the techniques of drawing. They are simple, clear and easy to follow.
When I asked Cava what he thought of Draw 50 Sea Creatures, he told me, "I like this book because the step-by-step guide is easy to follow for me. It gives me more specific detail than most kid's drawing books. I love the sea creatures that are in it."