Hi everyone, ……. wanted to share with you some of my newly acquired art books:
Guptill’s books are my favourite, favourite art books … I love, love his sketches, especially the ones done in watercolor. Guptill was not only a painter, an art director and a teacher but also an architect, so inevitably his perspective is always bang on yet somehow still managing to look effortlessly done. ‘ Watercolor painting step by step ‘ covers a lot of ground from color mixing and schemes, drawing from the photograph and still life, composition and arrangement of values to painting outdoors and various landscape elements divided into sections. That said, most (but not all) of this material is covered in his other books, which are available for free, such as in : Drawing with pen and ink, and a word concerning the brush, by Arthur L. Guptill. Here are some pages from this book to slurp over:
‘ Carlson’s guide to landscape painting’ by John F. Carlson is another gem, if you are new to landscape painting or even just to sketching, you have to , have to have this book on your bookshelf. You will not find any color illustrations in here but his simple pencil drawings drive home the point much better than any lavish color pictures would have done. His theory of angles I found invaluable, also perspective of clouds, trees etc is covered in a more approachable right-brained-thinking kind of a way.
‘The Laws guide to drawing birds’ by John Muir Laws , another beautiful, beautiful book that I highly recommend for beginners in bird drawing. Laws covers everything you need to know to draw birds; bird anatomy, bird flight, field sketching, using different mediums etc. What I like most about the book is that it is simple and direct and gets the point across using a lot of illustrations. Bird sketching should be enjoyable, its more about getting out into nature and feeling one with her, about observing and learning, immersing oneself in the experience of it and less on whether you have a page full of perfect drawings at the end and this is what Laws lays emphasis on.
‘Color and Light – A guide for the realist painter’ by the famed creator of Dinotopia, James Gurney, is a 200+ page book full of the most gorgeous paintings by himself as well as other great artists. He writes a blog at http://gurneyjourney.blogspot.de/ which I love to follow. This book covers topics like sources of light, light and form, pigments, visual perception, most of all I like the chapter on atmospheric effects. (Another book which I so want to get on this topic is ‘The Nature of Light and Colour in the Open Air’ By M. Minnaert. Minnaert was an astronomer and his classic book explains several interesting and common natural phenomenon such as reflection and refraction of light, formation of rainbows, haloes , coronae, light and color in the sky and in the landscape…)
‘Interaction of Color by Josef Albers‘ deals with somewhat more advanced areas in Color Theory. Albers was one of the most influential artist-educators of the twentieth century. He didnot give concepts straight out to his students, instead he made them cut out various tints, tones and shades of colors from magazines, place them one against the other and observe their interactions. This book has a number of color plates illustrating principles like after-images, simultaneous contrast, transparence and space illusion, Bezold effect, Weber-Fechner Law, vibrating boundaries, vanishing boundaries to name just a few. If you are new to this great man’s work, check out these videos Color Luminosity by Richard Nelson and Color Relativity to stimulate your interest.