I wanted to share some excellent art books–books that I started out with in developing my interest in art and what I continue using today. These books are strategy-honed for side-by-side demonstrations, different approaches, procedures, techniques, lessons, as well as rudimentary and intermediate skill-set coverage; or the books can be used for an advanced painter to refresh memory. For drawing, I really like Art of Drawing published by Sterling Publishing Co. (2003). This book has color and black and white picture demonstrations, brush effects, composition manifestation, point of view, proportion, tonal backgrounds along with landscape and still-life effects. A really great foundational art book to have around.
I also like The Artist’s Handbook by Ray Smith. This book covers just about every medium known with color demonstrations, materials needed, techniques that are easily chronicled and sectioned for anyone to grasp. There are inscriptions and descriptions of “wet-into-wet” effect–the laying and blending of color washes, controlling paint flow, and learning how to set spontaneous conditions. This approach I want to work with more in my watercolor pursuits. A comfortable and intelligent read juxtaposed with the “Appendices” section that is very informative and helpful.
I’m still in search of a really good oil painting book for my collection. Until then, I have a good quality watercolor book called Different Strokes Watercolor by Naomi Tydeman who offers a lot of comparing techniques for seascape, café interior, Woodland deer, rocky mountain, flowers, fields, still-life, sunsets, watermill reflections, Mediterranean walls, human figures, and boats. A fully colored publication that addresses and embraces different approaches artists can take with the same subject.