"Art Theory Links" updated!


I noted, perhaps not entirely surprised, that the “Art Theory Links” sticky only has about 1000 views, after several weeks… A thread about a Star Wars art book has nearly as many after only a few days, others have much more… :slight_smile:

So I’m making a little advertising for the ATL sticky here. It’s been recently updated, and probably will be soon again (keep checking back). We’re trying to make it as high quality and complete as possible, while still being manageable in size - we’ll try to keep it to less than 1 page.
It already has some of the best and most useful tutorials on the net, including the amazing genius of Andrew Loomis and Craig Mullins, and a new great one by Niklas Jansson (Prometheus). You could easily spend months going through that stuff… heck if you followed all the advice in there in a methodical Art Academy fashion you’d be occupied for years. Combined with the c&c you can get online, if you have the motivation it’s basically a complete art education right there.

And again, if you know of any equally good or better links, please let me know.


[li]References to the Bauhaus School will be good. It is the most influential school of art and architecture of the 20th century and they modernized many aspects of Art Theory that can not be ignored in any way. Kandinsky, Johannes Itten, etc…[/li][li]References to the Gestalt Theory is important (aesthetics vs. perception).[/li][li]Some theoretician do not split history of art from theory of art, so some links to art movementswill be beneficial too.[/li][/ul]


Thanks, I put a link to the wikipedia’s art movements page.

As for Bauhaus, it’s been no more influential than some other movements… btw check the Color link in the ATL thread, it has some interesting notions regarding Bauhaus color theory.

About Gestalt theory, after much searching I’d only found some stuff like:

Today, gestalt theory’s influence in the field of psychology is unobtrusive in the sense that its findings have all been absorbed by more recent viewpoints

Now it seems Google is down, at least over here. Do you have any good links regarding this subject? Well, I’ll try again later.


I think the reason it’s only had a few views is that most people will go in, pick a link and then work with that link for a while before going back and choosing a different topic…


Updated again!
This is what I found today, on Gestalt Aesthetics:

A term imported into modern art criticism from psychology. Gestalt psychology, founded by Max Wertheimer, Kurt Koffka and Wolfgang Kohler, holds that the parts are determined by the whole, and that all experience, including aesthetic experience, is related to certain basic structures which cannot be subdivided. Gestalt criticism is opposed to the idea of empathy, and holds that we do not ourselves project aesthetic and emotional qualities into the work of art, but find them there waiting for us. Defenders of minimal art claim that the spectator finds a ‘good Gestalt’ in the most primary forms.

The Thames & Hudson Dictionary of Art Terms, Thames & Hudson Ltd, 1984.

Doesn’t seem like it belongs in an art course, maybe you have a better link?


I’m still pretty pissed that thosee torrent links never work on the Loomis page. I’ve had them waiting while on-line for days if not weeks!

But I agree with Paperclip, I just drop in every once in a while for a bit more.

But really, is there any other way for me to download thos pdf’s.


In regards to that gestalt theory, maybe there should be a separate thread for art-theory and concepts of the arts. (If there isn’t one)


Oh, sure it does! Its core concept is the study of form/whole and perception with links to psychology and other things. I know, in design education, you cannot skip such an important theory. Here are some links:

2D Design Notes

Gestalt Effect

Art, Design and Gestalt Theory (historical background)



Bauhaus, as a school of Design had an immense influence on art, architecture, and design education of the 20th century. Particularly architecture and graphic design.
Here is an excerpt from Encarta:

[color=lemonchiffon]Bauhaus, famous German school of design that had inestimable influence on modern architecture, the industrial and graphic arts, and theater design. It was founded in 1919 by the architect [/color]Walter Gropius in Weimar as a merger of an art academy and an arts and crafts school. The Bauhaus was based on the principles of the 19th-century English designer William Morris and the Arts and Crafts movement that art should meet the needs of society and that no distinction should be made between fine arts and practical crafts. It also depended on the more forward-looking principles that modern art and architecture must be responsive to the needs and influences of the modern industrial world and that good designs must pass the test of both aesthetic standards and sound engineering. Thus, classes were offered in crafts, typography, and commercial and industrial design, as well as in sculpture, painting, and architecture. The Bauhaus style, later also known as the International Style, was marked by the absence of ornament and ostentatious facades and by harmony between function and the artistic and technical means employed.


It would be nice if someone could host Loomis’ books somewhere else. :wink:

I really want to check them out.:bounce:


Its core concept is the study of form/whole and perception with links to psychology and other things. I know, in design education, you cannot skip such an important theory.

Gestalt Theory as applied to design (looking at your links) basically seems to be these 5 concepts: Closure, Continuance, Similarity, Proximity, Alignment. I added it under Composition.

Bauhaus, well… it’s listed under Art Movements, and it’s mentioned in a Color Theory link. Surely Greek and Roman art have each been more influential on Western art? And they’re not even mentioned. Although perhaps we don’t call those ‘Movements’… I could add a category Art History, but I feel this is beyond the scope for now, as it would be a huge list of links all on its own. Maybe later.

oquimdcr, what do you mean? You can’t access them on the present link?


Nah, I meant that if someone already has them as PDFs, they might be able to create the torrents. I’m not well versed on BitTorrent, so I don’t know if it’s too much work. I just click and download. :blush:


I wish I could say something productive, but Im stuck on the :eek: “OH MY GOD ITS STEVEN STAHLBERG!” :cry: :applause: thought. I wish the “bowdown” smiley was an option here… it SO FITS the situation. I cant believe it, I LOVE YOUR WORK!!! Im a student yes,… struggling to learn from my stressful projects of 3D and 2D animation. I STUDY your art and tutorials like its my bible! I brag about you alot too, no Im not a freak, just VERY inspired by you! Like I said,… wish I could say something productive but WOW! I visit the forum once in a while, recently became a member,… but you will definitely see me more often,… hopefully not so stupified!

Thank you for sharing the links, I have been browsing through them in between classes. I trust your opinions above those of my teachers. Ever thought about teaching?


Hehe, thanks. :slight_smile:
Teaching? Nah, I do a bit of it, indirectly, with my tutorials, and I’ve been teaching staff and giving advice to people who ask for it, and I’ve even given a few seminars and talks… but not really on a full time basis… I’m happiest when I’m creating something, all by myself, music up loud… lecturing can’t really compare to that. :buttrock:


Spoken like a true artist!


I updated the thread with an important note about Loomis. I feel that it’s unfortunate the younger generation does not take advantage of the valuable resource that the free Loomis books provide–it’s like passing up years of expensive art school education–FOR FREE. Anyway, the note I added will drive the point home.



If you are a beginner, you need Loomis. Don’t go searching for some kind of magical tutorial that will miraculously turn you into a better artist overnight–such thing does not exist. Your best chance at improving and growing as a beginning aspiring artist is to read the Loomis books from cover to cover, and do all the exercises that are provided in them. If you can master the contents taught in his books, you’ll already be a master artist yourself. That is not an exaggeration–it is a promise.

I’m very new to drawing and I can’t even draw stuff that look horrible, just to make you realize where I’m at.
Of course there is no magic trick, but there’s a start. I currently know how to draw distorted cubes. So, what Loomis book do you suggest that I read first?

Really nice updates, tough. I’ll read some of that colour theory stuff to begin with. Being a photographer I guess it can enchant some of my pictures a bit.


I think you should just download all of his books, as they are all excellent. I think all them can be a good starting point for a beginner. Some books are entirely based on easier beginner concept, and some books will take you all the way to master level, but they all can be a good place for beginners to start. I think you should scan through each book briefly and pick one that suits your current need.


[font=Verdana]I already got all of he’s books here in my Loomis folder on my computer. After a really brief scan I would guess that the “Fun With A Pencil” would be really basic, thus this book would suit me, and the “Creative Illustration” look way to complete for my level, “Drawing the Head and Hands” had a very interesting look as well, but it might be complicated, I can’t tell without reading it. So I think I’ll start with the Fun With A Pencil one.

  I have all intentions to read them all eventually, however.

  Thanks for the help, and great work in d'artiste.



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