The Laws Guide to Drawing Birds

(3 customer reviews)


“I wish this book had been available to me when I was starting out, because it is filled with tips and tricks that took me decades to learn.” –David Allen Sibley, artist and field guide author, in his foreword to this book

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More than 60,000 copies sold!

With a foreword by artist and field guide author David Allen Sibley. Drawing birds opens a world of beauty and sharpens our ability to observe accurately and deeply. The ability to draw is not a gift you are born with but a skill that anyone can develop. Whether you are a birder wishing to quickly sketch birds or an artist who want to understand and accurately depict birds in your paintings this is the book for you. The demonstrations and material in this book has been developed and refined in hundreds of workshops and will give you the techniques and knowledge you need to draw birds. Preview pages from the book and order your copy now. Read published reviews.

Learn how to:

  • focus on the most important aspects of a bird in a quick sketch.
  • suggest the texture of bird feathers.
  • observe and capture critical proportions of different species.
  • understand and accurately depict a bird’s wing.
  • draw bird beaks, eyes and feet.
  • foreshorten and rotate your drawings to any angle.
  • render the angles and curves of birds with long necks.
  • draw birds in flight.
  • develop techniques for adding color with colored pencil or watercolor.
  • sketch in the field when your subject can move or fly away.
  • avoid common pitfalls in bird drawing.

Additional information

Weight21 oz
Dimensions11 × 8.5 × .4 in

3 reviews for The Laws Guide to Drawing Birds


    This book is an absolute must for artists who want to learn how to draw birds. The anatomy is approachable, and detailed. And the methods by which he breaks the bird into recognizable shapes makes it so much easier to understand what you see when looking at a bird – which translates to a better drawing. Highly recommended.

  2. Truman

    If one has an interest in drawing birds this book is a must have! I am an intermediate level birder that’s had a budding but unrefined interest in drawing for years, and have spent an embarrassing amount of money on other guides before finding this one. If I’d bought this book first I never would have bought another. The book’s focus on posture, proportion and angles, so well described in step-by-step guidance, is easily understood and allows for immediate feelings of success. Then, the included level of detail related to bird behavior and anatomy deeply reinforces what the eye sees. My drawings may never be seen in a gallery, but in a matter of days I’ve become proud enough to show them to my family and friends. It seems that every time I open this book I pick up a tidbit that improves my work even more. With this book at my side I’ll never be afraid of a blank piece of paper again!

    • John Muir Laws

      Thank you so much! I so appreciate your feedback.

  3. Pebbles The Ginger Cat

    I have purchased approximately a dozen books on drawing birds before I purchased this one. If I had found this book first I could have saved myself loads of money.
    This is absolutely THE best book for learning to draw birds out of all those available.
    It describes accurately and in detail, the anatomy, plumage, and physique of every type of bird.
    It shows you in simple to learn techniques how to draw, colour, paint and depict everything from small garden pipsqueaks up to large shore birds and birds of prey.
    After reading this book and copying the drawings and paintings it was like a light was turned on !
    Don’t waste your time and money buying any other book on bird drawing. Just buy this one – read it, do the drawings and become a bird painting master.

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