My thirteen year old daughter has been reading manga for several years and drawing in a manga style for almost as long. Needless to say, she was even more excited about the opportunity to help me with a book review than usual.
We’re not familiar with the original Chibi Art Class, but a cursory glance online indicates that Mini Chibi Art Class is the same book as the original, only smaller.
For those of you not familiar with manga, “chibi” (shorty) is a style of manga in which the characters are “kawaii” (cute). Chibi characters have big heads and little bodies.
This book is a thorough guide to creating chibis from your own and includes
-getting the proportions right
The biggest section of the book is devoted to a calendar year of chibi characters with seasonally themed poses and props etc. Each month has 2 two-page spreads with step-by-step instructions for recreating the character’s pose.
The next section is devoted to “Beasties”, chibi characters with cat ears or bat wings.
After that, there’s an inspiration gallery with different styles of eyes, props, clothing, etc.
The final section is a place to practice drawing various poses and coloring in completed drawings.
My thirteen year old absolutely loved this book and has asked if we can buy a copy of our own when the book comes out. She has done numerous chibi drawings based on ideas from this book.
I wanted to see what this book would be like for a beginner, so I asked one of my (almost) eleven year old twins to look at the book. She reads manga sometimes and she likes to draw, but she has never really drawn in a chibi style. She was able to pick up the basics right away and produced an ADORABLE self portrait.
I would absolutely recommend this book to anyone who is interested in drawing chibi characters. This was a fun and thorough guide and my girls have enjoyed it so much. My thirteen year old has pointed out that that a paperback version of this book would be easier to use than a digital version. I’m not sure if this book will have a digital edition of its own since it’s a mini version of an existing book that does have a digital edition, but that’s something to keep in mind. I will definitely keep an eye out for more of Yoai’s drawing books in the future.
I received a copy of this book from Netgalley/Race Point Publishing in exchange for an honest review.