My inability to draw held me back for years. Envisioning and creating without first drafting, while a worthwhile exercise, plays mischief with proportions and processes when you put tool to metal. Rendering allows one to develop a design, successively refining it until reaching for one's tools becomes logical and timely. And good visual skills avoid misunderstandings, false starts and waste in commissioned work.
Practical Jewelry Rendering gets right to the nuts and bolts. One is given explicit instruction in three media (monochrome pencil, color pencil, and gouache/watercolor) along a direct and viable path to an attractive, accurate image of what one proposes to make. The exercises are presented in a very few pages, succinctly, and with typical McCreight lucidity. No waste. Right to the point. The included template lets you jump right in without involved tedious drafting. You quickly attain facility and confidence. While the examples are simple, they're not overly so and certainly not uninspired, and most importantly, they're realizable. Sure, there are other artistic approaches, but the author never forgets the reader wants to show the design firstly, and will augment technique and develop style, later. One thing, plan to spend a hundred dollars for supplies and equipment, but rest assured this will last ten years and pay dividends in time, materials saved, more commissions and better craftsmanship.
This book perfectly fit my needs, and its brevity kept it from ending up on my shelf of things I intend to do 'someday'. It went right into service, didn't scare me off, and didn't overwhelm. A good tool gets used, and this is one really good, well-designed tool.
Tim McCreight is unaffected in his teaching. He hands you the most appropriate tool and shows you how to use it easily with the least distraction. If you want to design and fabricate jewelry, get ALL his other books. If you want to render jewelry, get this one. Seriously, you could be doing it in days, not weeks. It's made a big, big difference in my work.