Higher Education

Drawing: A Contemporary Approach, 6th Edition

  • Teel Sale
  • Claudia Betti
  • ISBN-10: 0495094919  |  ISBN-13: 9780495094913
  • 336 Pages
  • Previous Editions: 2004, 1997, 1992
  • © 2008 | Published
  • College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $162.00
  *Why an online review copy?
  • It's the greener, leaner way to review! An online copy cuts down on paper and on time. Reduce the wait (and the weight) of printed texts. Your online copy arrives instantly, and you can review it anytime from your computer or favorite mobile device.

If you prefer a print copy to review, please contact your representative.



One of the best-selling drawing texts in the market, DRAWING: A CONTEMPORARY APPROACH goes beyond conventional approaches, emphasizing the emotional, intellectual, spiritual, and social significance of art. The authors trace the development of today's art from that of the past, showing drawing's meaning and continuity. DRAWING: A CONTEMPORARY APPROACH offers a combination of effective pedagogy, good exercises, and high-quality, contemporary drawings as models, focusing on contemporary artists who draw in a multicultural world.

Features and Benefits

  • The authors present problems in a logical sequence and introduce fundamentals along with the diverse techniques and materials to help students develop their drawing skills and style. A multi-level approach to drawing promotes independent development and thematic thinking.
  • Innovative problems stimulate students to make sensitive, intellectual, and emotive responses in solving them.
  • "Sketchbook Projects" that provide practical exercises related to chapter content, allow students to get hands-on practice of techniques. "Computer exercises" and illustrations reflect technological influences on drawing as an art form.
  • Outstanding works by contemporary professional artists expose students to the multitude of current trends in drawing. Art of the last two decades is given broad coverage and analysis to give students a truly contemporary view of drawing.
  • Critical analysis, using both formal and conceptual approaches, as well as critical vocabulary familiarizes students with today's art issues and practices.
  • Discussions of artists' methods, and quotations from artists on the nature of their drawing, give students insight into the drawing process.
  • The book's exercises maintain a balance between serious attention to sound techniques and a lighthearted approach to the drawing process.

Table of Contents

1. Drawing: Definitions and Purposes.
2. Learning to See: Gesture and Other Beginning Approaches.
3. Shape /Plane and Volume.
4. Value.
5. Line.
6. Texture.
7. Color.
8. Antiperspective: The Triumph of the Picture Plane.
9. Organizing the Picture Plane.
10. Thematic Development.
11. A Look at Drawing Today.
Guide A: Materials.
Guide B: Keeping a Sketchbook.
Guide C: Breaking Artistic Blocks and Making Critical Assessments.
Guide D: Presentation.
Suggested Readings.

What's New

  • Revised and updated throughout, the sixth edition features a streamlined narrative that focuses students on the practical aspects of learning to draw, all while offering clear and insightful discussions of the evolution of drawing and its concepts.
  • The updated image program features 25% new examples, displaying the most recent developments in works on paper.
  • A new text layout and design features a more generous trim size to better accommodate larger images.

Alternate Formats

Choose the format that best fits your student's budget and course goals

To customize your learning solution, contact your Learning Consultant for more information.

  • ISBN-10: 1111343608 | ISBN-13: 9781111343606

    List Price = $122.95  | CengageBrain Price = $122.95  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $92.50

Efficacy and Outcomes


"The authors combine descriptive and evocative language to direct the student artist toward the development of his or her own work. The authors are able to demystify the drawing process without sacrificing an understanding of its expressive power or of the complexity of artistic ideas it embodies. The inclusion of a diverse range of artists and artworks illustrates an equally diverse range of ideas that are made relevant to the act of drawing." - Ruth Trotter, The University of La Verne

— Ruth Trotter, The University of La Verne

"The authors write beautifully on the philosophy of drawing and art and seem committed to educating readers on the changes that drawing has undergone in the last hundred years. They show us with a number of vivid illustrations and examples that drawing is a unique art form capable of bringing out the most creative impulses that an artist might be searching for…""[They] have written a comprehensive exploration of the complexities of drawing today. They show us, through historical references with descriptive and inspirational illustrations, how drawing has progressed from its status as a preliminary layout tool to an art form in its own right….""DRAWING: A CONTEMPORARY APPROACH is an important text for anyone interested in drawing as it is currently being practiced. It allows us to see the possibilities within what the authors reveal as an exciting and dynamic medium." - Craig Lloyd, College of Mt. Saint Joseph

— Craig Lloyd, College of Mt. Saint Joseph

"I found myself really inspired by the smart and fresh approaches to student projects. As a whole, I thought they functioned well as an intersection of new and old approaches to drawing, touching on obvious, time-tested approaches such as continuous contour of plants, but also opening up the idea of drawing to new techniques such as copy machine transfer…""It is rare that a book can communicate effectively across the landscape of art, addressing the multivalent range of students’ experience levels and interests. I believe this book does an exemplary job of addressing students’ needs as both thinkers and makers, and I would gladly use this text in my classroom." - Dylan Collins, Kent State University

— Dylan Collins, Kent State University


All supplements have been updated in coordination with the main title. Select the main title's "About" tab, then select "What's New" for updates specific to title's edition.

For more information about these supplements, or to obtain them, contact your Learning Consultant.

Instructor Supplements

Color Wheel Card  (ISBN-10: 0495170518 | ISBN-13: 9780495170518)

This 5 × 7 card can be stored in an art supply box. It has the Munsell Color Wheel and Value Scale on one side, and the Itten Color Wheel on the other. It is available to be bundled with new copies of the textbook at no additional charge.

List Price = $.00  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $.00

Student Supplements

Color Wheel Card  (ISBN-10: 0495170518 | ISBN-13: 9780495170518)

This 5 × 7 card can be stored in an art supply box. It has the Munsell Color Wheel and Value Scale on one side, and the Itten Color Wheel on the other.

List Price = $.00  | College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $.00

Meet the Author

Author Bio

Teel Sale

Teel Sale is an artist, writer, and teacher, and has had a career of national and international shows (drawing, painting, printmaking, and performance art). She has served as art editor of Trilobite Press, book designer for university presses, book reviewer for Texas Books in Review, and visiting artist/lecturer at colleges and universities nationwide. Recipient of a Pouch Cove Foundation Grant (June, 2001) for drawing, Sale was a faculty member (drawing, painting, and honors) at the University of North Texas from 1975 through 1989.