View Full Version : Can anyone recommend...

Keith Russell
03-08-2001, 11:43 AM
...a good, intermediate-to-advanced book on acrylic painting techniques?

I've looked through several acrylics books at the local bookstores, but most of them seem geared toward beginners, or toward painting in a very 'painterly' style.

I am interested in learning new ways to paint surface texture (stone, concrete, rust, grass, hair, sand, etc.) highlights (esp. eyes, water, burnished/brushed metal, glossy and matte plastic, etc.), and other details.

I have not found a book that deals with these things in an in-depth, comprehensive fashion.

If anyone has any suggestions, they would be greatly appreciated.



Keith Russell
Synthetic Sky Studios
Science Fiction Fine Art
[email protected]

03-08-2001, 06:54 PM
You might like to check out The Acrylic Painter's Book of Styles & Techniques by Rachel Wolf.

Here are some of the things featured...
Creating Textured Effect, demo of an old log lying on a lake bed...using dry brush, palette knife.

Using spray varnish for a beaded effect.
Using plastic wrap for the effect of Swirling water.
Developing a snow scene..using those techniques.

Using flat opaque paint to develop landscapes.

Using acrylic as Transparent Watercolor..how to use titanium white as a mask.

Impasto strokes and vibrant color..creating shapes with negative painting....
Some excellent demos using glass in the painting.

Using multiple thin washes.

Experimental techniques...
stencilling, bubble-wrap, paint over collage, stamping with crumpled papers, scratches, scraping layers, corrugated cardboard, drawing with alcohol, resist techniques with alcohol and paraffin,
lifting techniques.

Another book I have is Enrich your Paintings with Texture by David M. Band...
Its not all acrylic but it has some good ideas that you could use with oils or acrylics.
Chapters include...Skies and Clouds, Trees - heavily textured bark, decaying bark and more., Foliage - layering texture, soft or hazy foliage.., Rocks - Grass - Snow - Great paintings thruout in color.

In an earlier message, Diane Johnson listed some good books...you might look thru the earlier postings and check it out too.

"Everything is not art and Art is not everything, but it comes close."....carly

03-09-2001, 05:28 PM
Hi Keith,

There are few good acrylic painting books on the market, fewer still, devoted to intermediate or highly technical painting. I did a great deal of architectural rendering for A&E firms which really helps you learn how to paint just about anything. For detailed help with different surfaces, I would also look at the art books dedicated to architectural rendering painters. Many of these describe in detail how to paint brick, concrete, pavement, wood, etc.

Two such books are:
The Art of Architectural Illustration, McGraw-Hill
Color Rendering, A Guide for Interior Designers and Architects; Wei Dong, McGraw Hill

Here are two standard art books devoted to differing techniques but you may have already seen them:
Painting Techniques, Elizabeth Tate, North Light Books
Creative Acrylic Painting Techniques, North Light Books

And one from the decorative area for painting surfaces:
Recipes for Surfaces, Mindy Drucker & Pierre Finkelstein, Fireside Books

I'd also look into Classical Realism, even if the books relate to oil painting.


L. Diane Johnson (http://www.LDianeJohnson.com/) NAPA, PSA
Plein Air Workshops (http://www.LDianeJohnson.com/workshops/)

03-09-2001, 05:47 PM
Thanks for the book suggestions. http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/wink.gif

03-10-2001, 12:02 AM
Here's one that WandaC recommends. I don't know if it's oils or acrylics or if it works for both.. some techniques would I'm sure.
I don't remember seeing cement, rust, etc on the list though. But many are transferable as you know.

20 Problem Subjects and How to Paint Them

Don't forget the joys of stencilling in a texture from bubble wrap, sandpaper, tree bark, etc .. by pressing into the paint when wet.

SKirk, visual artist (http://skirkart.artistnation.com/)
Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.
- Robert F. Kennedy

Keith Russell
03-10-2001, 10:12 PM
Artistry, Sandi, and Carly:

thanks for the info. Yeah, I've looked through several Acrylic books at Barnes & Noble, Borders, etc. I even tried Amazon, but art books are tough to buy via the mail, if you haven't seen the book in person first.

I've noticed a lack of intermediate to advanced books.

I'll have to look up the books you have all recommended.

Thanks again,


Keith Russell
Synthetic Sky Studios
Science Fiction Fine Art
[email protected]