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Old 06-05-2007, 02:49 PM
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WATERCOLOR BOOKS, DVD's,VIDEOS - post your REVIEWS here.

We are regularly asked by members new and old about suitable watercolor tutorial books on various aspects of watercolor painting. It may be that you are looking for a general tutorial or a book on a particular subject or technique - flowers, portraits, landscapes, skies, pen and wash, color theory, painting from photographs etc. etc.

I have now added DVD's and videos to this thread, so if you have any recommendations, post a review using the relevant parts of the template.

Many members have a collection of books and it would be a great help if you would give your opinion on each of your books in the form of a review using the following standard template: (highlight the template copy and paste into your reply).

If you read a review and wish to add your opinion, by all means submit your own review, just input the title, your Personal Assessment and Rating.

NOTE: You can use the "Search this Thread" facility at the top of the thread to locate a book or a subject.

Quote:
TEMPLATE:

Front cover picture optional but keep it small say 200 x 300 pixels)

Title

Author

Author's website

Publisher

Published Date

ISBN No.

Format/size

Genre (Landscape/Floral/Portraits/Still Life/Technique/Various)

Description of content

Personal assessment of content

Suitability for beginners, intermediate or advanced


Here's an example(no need to use red text for your input):



Title
The Watercolor Landscape Techniques of 23 International Artists
Author
Not applicable
Publisher
International Artist Publishing Inc.
Published date
2003
ISBN No.
1-92983-426-8
Format/size
12x8 hardback
Genre (Landscape/Floral/Portraits/Still Life/Technique/Various)
Landscape.
Description of content
The varied landscape painting styles of 23 international artists. A wide range of styles is covered from very detailed work to loose wet in wet techniques. The artists include Alvaro Castagnet, Nita Engle, Robert Lovett, John Newberry and Joseph Zbukvic. Each artist is allotted six pages, two to describe their approach to painting, a two page demonstration spread and a two page gallery spread.
Personal assessment of content
I found this an excellent book which is crammed full of valuable information gathered from many cumulative years of experience.
Suitability for beginners, intermediate or advanced
Intermediate

Please limit your replies to reviews, any queries send me a pm - a link to this thread will be placed in the Watercolor Handbook.

Now it's up to you!

Doug

Last edited by Yorky : 12-31-2007 at 03:53 AM.
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Old 06-05-2007, 05:36 PM
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Re: WATERCOLOR BOOK REVIEWS - post yours here.

Title: Complete Guide to Watercolor Painting



Author: Edgar A Whitney

Publisher: Dover Books

Published Date: 1974

ISBN No. 0-486-41742-5

Format/size: 8 x 11

Genre (Landscape/Floral/Portraits/Still Life/Technique/Various): Technique

Description of content: The book covers tools, Exercise, Painting in gerneral, Landscapes, Figure and Portrait, Prinicples od design, Elements of Design, Drawing, MattingFraming and Selling.

Personal assessment of content: This book although primarily black and white (very few color plates) carries tremendous impact and is a classic must have.

The basics in tools and technique are cover but the true treasure is the attitude, thinking process and philosphy of painting coupled with excellent examples. There is allot of design and/or composition insights also. These two great examples with real paiintings.

Each time I read it something more comes. I have read it three times, and know I will read it again.

Suitability for beginners, intermediate or advanced: All of them

Score on a scale 1-5 (1=poor 5=excellent): 5
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Last edited by Yorky : 12-31-2007 at 03:57 AM.
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Old 06-05-2007, 05:55 PM
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Re: WATERCOLOR BOOK REVIEWS - post yours here.



Title: The Watercolourist's Guide to Painting Buildings

Author: Richard Taylor

Publisher: d&c—David & Charles

Published Date: 1998

ISBN: 0 7153 0811 4

Format/size: Hardcover, 8" x 11.5"

Genre: Technique

Description: "This book is written from an artist's point of view—an artist with a love of structures and a fascination for textures and how to recreate them in watercolour." Richard Taylor The author shows a wide variety of structures and architectural elements and techniques for portraying them in a painterly way. He also discusses including people and other elements of the locales in which the buildings are found.

Personal assessment: The book has numerous color illustrations of the author's techniques for painting the various types of building materials that make up the structures he paints. It is written in an easy-to-follow manner that I found it to be both interesting and instructive. If architectural subjects appeal to you, this one is worth looking into.

Suitability for beginners, intermediate or advanced: All levels of painter could follow these methods.

Score on a scale 1–5 (1=poor 5=excellent): 5


Sylvia

Last edited by Yorky : 06-12-2007 at 12:03 PM.
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Old 06-07-2007, 12:11 PM
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Lynn Quinn Lynn Quinn is offline
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Re: WATERCOLOR BOOK REVIEWS - post yours here.



Title: Color Choices (Making Color Sense our of Color Theory)

Author: Stephen Quiller www.quillergallery.com

Publisher: Watson-Guptill Publishers, New York

Published Date: c. 1989 (paperback 2002)

ISBN No.: (pbk) 0-8230-0696-4

Format/size: 8 1/4" x 11" 144 pages

Genre (Landscape/Floral/Portraits/Still Life/Technique/Various): Colour Theory

Description of content: Quiller starts off with 10 pages about the colour wheel. He developed his colour wheel after 10 years of research. It contains 68 colours, showing pigment names for each. This isn't to suggest you need all those colours! But whatever colours you have, you can place in their proper position on the colour wheel, to determine exact complements, etc. There is also a chart for the major brands of w/c paint (also charts for oil & acrylics), due to differences in colour for same-name pigments. The charts show which brand most closely matches the colour Quiller has selected for that position on the colour wheel.
Quiller has very informative chapters (with many colour studies, as well as finished paintings, to show how different ways of handling colour can radically change mood and effect)) on the following:
'Monochromatic and Complementary Color Schemes'
'Analogous and Split-Complementary Color Schemes'
'Triadic Color Schemes'
'Going Beyond Structured Color'
'Master Colorists' This section shows haw famous painters over the years have used colour.

Personal assessment of content: This book not only gave me a better understanding of colour theory (in a straight-forward and easy-to-understand way), but opened my eyes to a vast range of possibilities in using colour to communicate many things in a painting, beyond strictly 'realistic' colours. I have found this book to be an invaluable reference in selecting colours that work beautifully together, and help me say what I want to say in a painting.

Suitability for beginners, intermediate or advanced: All

Score on a scale 1-5 (1=poor 5=excellent): 5
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Last edited by Yorky : 06-13-2007 at 06:05 PM.
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Old 06-07-2007, 02:45 PM
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Re: WATERCOLOR BOOK REVIEWS - post yours here.

Title: Webb on Watercolor



Author: Frank Webb

Publisher: North Light Books - Cinncinnati, OH

Published Date: 1990

ISBN No.: 0891343466

Format/size: 12" x 9" (softcover and hardback available)

Genre (Landscape/Floral/Portraits/Still Life/Technique/Various): All of the above!

Description of content:
Explains almost every aspect of watercolor including chapters on equipment, color, value, planning, philosophy, and technique (Mr. Webb calls this the "Encounter").

Personal assessment of content:

I have enjoyed this book since it was introduced in 1990. It contains some of the most thorough, straight-forward explanations of this fascinating creature we call Watercolor. Many full-color examples of Mr. Webb's work are given. The chapter called "Encounter" gives the reader a very nice description of Webb's various 'styles' of painting a watercolor. The book also emphasises the philosophy behind painting and art in general.

Suitability for beginners, intermediate or advanced: All levels

Score on a scale 1-5 (1=poor 5=excellent): 5
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Last edited by Yorky : 06-21-2007 at 08:27 AM.
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Old 06-08-2007, 10:21 AM
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]

Title: First Impressions

Author: Edward Norton Ward

Publisher: Watson Guptill

Published Date: 1990

ISBN No.: 0823018202

Format/size:
12" x 9" Hardback

Genre (Landscape/Floral/Portraits/Still Life/Technique/Various):

mostly landscape

Description of content:

On-site (plein air) painting is presented in this fine book by Mr. Ward. He includes an introduction to equipment and setting up, lanscape painting, design concepts, painting in the garden, adding people, initial sketching, etc. Many full-color paintings are presented giving a great example of the artist's work.

Personal assessment of content:

I first found this book in an old used bookstore in St. Augustine, FL. I was hooked at first sight! Mr. Ward's spontaneous style is colorful and full of playful, well-designed shapes. He describes his plein air methods and all the paintings presented were done on-the-spot. This book proves that with a minimum of basic equipment, the artist can produce very beautiful paintings in a very direct manner.

Suitability for beginners, intermediate or advanced: all levels

Score on a scale 1-5 (1=poor 5=excellent):
5
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Last edited by Yorky : 06-21-2007 at 08:27 AM.
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Old 06-10-2007, 04:42 AM
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Graham Greene Country



Title
Graham Green Country
Author
Paul Hogarth - Foreword and Commentary by Graham Greene
Publisher
Pavilion Books Limited
Published Date
1986
ISBN No.
1 85145 042 4
Format/size
Paperback 11½ x 10
Genre (Landscape/Floral/Portraits/Still Life/Technique/Various)
Travel biography with sketches
Description of content
A commentary with beautiful ink and watercolours sketches of a 50,000 mile journey around the locations of author Graham Greene's books. The sketches are accompanied by extracts from the books and a fascinating description of the places that Hogarth found.
Personal assessment of content
Wonderful plein air sketches which taught me lots about the importance of capturing the mood of a place. Highly recommended to artists and book lovers alike.
Suitability for beginners, intermediate or advanced
All
Score on a scale 1-5 (1=poor 5=excellent)
5

Doug

Last edited by Yorky : 06-10-2007 at 06:23 AM.
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Old 06-10-2007, 06:45 PM
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rue d'oak rue d'oak is offline
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Title
Watercolor: Simple, Fast, and Focused

Author
Mel Stabin

Publisher
Watson-Guptill Publications

Published Date
1999

ISBN No.
0-8230-5706-2

Format/size
softcover, color. 112 pages. 8.5 x 10.5 inches.

Genre

Landscape, public places, portraits. Plein Air. "Loose" style.

Description of content
Defines and illustrates Stabin's signature approach, emphasizing
• simplification of detail
• quick, spontaneous painting
• clarity of focus
Includes chapters on equipment (brief intro to palette, brushes, paper), design principles, creating quick value sketches, color choices, portraits and painting outdoors. Many examples of Stabin's work; also that of students and other painters.

Personal assessment of content
As this is one book I keep coming back to, you'd think I'd immediately say, "buy it!" Excellent for inspiration and thinking beyond the boundaries of realism and controlled technique, it is not a book for the feint hearted. Stabin's insights and instruction is generous, detailed, well illustrated and straight to the point, and but the book includes only 3 step-by-step examples. I think there is a leap of faith needed to put his suggestions to work. I recommend it, though, because it keeps me thinking about the spirit and craft of watercolor.

Suitability
For intermediate or advanced, particularly interested in expanding and loosening the range of their style.

Score on a scale 1-5 (1=poor 5=excellent)
4...a 5 if there were a little more step-by-step or WIP content.
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Old 06-10-2007, 07:09 PM
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Title
Fast Sketching Techniques

Author
David Rankin

Publisher
North Light Books

Published Date
2000

ISBN No.
1-58180-005-3

Format/size
paperback. 144 pages. 8.5 x 11 inches. Black & white.

Genre
technique; various subjects

Description of content
Detailed exercises and examples to build field sketching skills. Includes sections on materials, composition of sketch, developing speed, sketching from photos as well as on site, use of white space/values, going from sketch to painting. Specific chapters on sketching landscapes, people and animals.

Personal assessment of content
A must for someone wanting to build or expand use of values studies and field journals. Exercises are broken into easily understood steps. Exellent range of examples. This book will help you get to the essence of a subject quickly, and will foster doing so in a confident, professional style. Demystifies value studies and sketching. Helps the artist SEE as much as draw.

Suitability
Recommend it for all levels. Beginners will transform their sketching; experienced painters will be reenergized.

Score on a scale 1-5 (1=poor 5=excellent)
5+
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Last edited by Yorky : 06-11-2007 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 06-10-2007, 07:52 PM
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Title
Painting Nature's Peaceful Places

Author
Robert Reynolds with Patrick Seslar

Publisher
North Light Books

Published Date
1993. May be out of print, though available through used book sources.

ISBN No.
0-89134-511-6

Format/size
Hardcover. 135 pages. 8.75 x 11.25 inches

Genre
Realistic technique; nature, particularly mountains, rivers, Northern California

For examples of the genre see
http://www.robertreynoldsart.com/

Description of content
Teaches technique needed to realitically and artfully capture the mood and sense of special places in nature. Illustrates the creative process, from value sketches and source photos to WIP and completed paintings. Detailed analysis and examples of composition, perspective, value, atmospheric color (e.g. for skies, mist, snow), range of texture tecniques, use of masking and regaining whites. Include nine WIP style demonstations of achieving a scene's mood and spirit. Examples: First Snow (valley and creek), Rock Pools (rock and creek macro), Alpenglow (trees and peaks), Early Morning (apline lake and mist), Quiet Journey (creek and rocks in snow). Also includes basic info on paint, work environment, brushes, color combinations, brush strokes.

Personal assessment of content
Heart-stoppingly beautiful artwork that you believe you can do, too, because Reynolds and Seslar lay out the steps and technique so clearly. Worth owning just to glimpse inside the artist's heart and mind. Defies the view that realism belongs to photography or equals slavish rendering. Offers the serious student of watercolor realism clear steps, techniques, and descriptions, particularly for alpine and light-infused settings.

Suitability
all levels and coffee tables

Score on a scale 1-5 (1=poor 5=excellent)
4
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Last edited by Yorky : 06-11-2007 at 12:07 PM.
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Old 06-10-2007, 08:20 PM
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Title
Watercolor: A New Beginning

Author
Ann K. Lindsay

Publisher
Watson-Guptill

Published Date
1998

ISBN No.
0-8230-563-4

Format/size
paperback. 144 pages. 9.5 x 7.5 inches.

Genre
Beginning technique. Still life and simple nature (flowers, trees).

Description of content
A "self-help" oriented book for the beginning watercolorist, nearly like a workshop on paper. Addresses technique and the emotional barriers many have experienced about art, watercolor in particular. Good intro to materials, handling a brush, getting set up. "Hands-on" style exerices introduce basic concepts of mixing primary and secondary colors, as well as working wet-in-wet, producing graded washes, and finding edges. Addresses drawing, negative painting, volume and form. Projects include pears, leaves, flowers, simple daily life objects.

Personal assessment of content
Very supportive in tone and exercises. Successfully taps the "inner artist" and demystifies basic watercolor terms and techniques. The playful and intuitive philosophy is good for developing a looser style and letting go of negative self-judgement, while also building concrete, core watercolor skills.

Suitability
Beginners

Score on a scale 1-5 (1=poor 5=excellent)
5
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Last edited by Yorky : 06-11-2007 at 12:08 PM.
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Old 06-11-2007, 10:16 PM
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Re: WATERCOLOR BOOK REVIEWS - post yours here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by painterbear
Title: The Watercolourist's Guide to Painting Buildings

Author: Richard Taylor

Suitability for beginners, intermediate or advanced: All levels of painter could follow these methods.

Score on a scale 1–5 (1=poor 5=excellent): 5


Sylvia

I've been trying to get this book but its out of print. I tried the publisher and they want $70.00 for it yikes
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Old 06-11-2007, 11:13 PM
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Lawrence Fox Lawrence Fox is offline
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Re: WATERCOLOR BOOK REVIEWS - post yours here.

Scriblett:

The author wrote a series of books for the publisher; I got his one on skies out of public library here in Vaughan and I'm going to check to see if any more are in the catalogue. When I was at ChapIndigo (Chapters/Indigo, I forget which "label" it was) they had one book that combined several of Mr. Taylor's books into one, so try searching their website for a listing...

Ooops....I just checked the website. The book I was glancing at was "Watercolor Landscapes: The Complete Guide to Painting Landscapes", which looks like it combines four books (clouds, shadows, etc). The buildings MAY be part of it, though....

You may have to try the used bookstores or places like ABE Books...
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Last edited by Lawrence Fox : 06-11-2007 at 11:39 PM.
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Old 06-13-2007, 08:36 PM
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Re: WATERCOLOR BOOK REVIEWS - post yours here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by scriblett
I've been trying to get this book but its out of print. I tried the publisher and they want $70.00 for it yikes

Amazon have some new and used ones for about $30 - here

It's the UK site but am sure they deliver abroad .

Pat
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Old 06-13-2007, 11:05 PM
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Lynn Quinn Lynn Quinn is offline
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Re: WATERCOLOR BOOK REVIEWS - post yours here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by scriblett
I've been trying to get this book but its out of print. I tried the publisher and they want $70.00 for it yikes


Good Grief! Just checked Amazon.ca, and they want between $131 and $138.00! Amazon.com wants $70.79 US.
Kathy, I've seen sometimes in the North Light Book Club magazine where members list books that they no longer want. I haven't seen it lately, though. You could always contact NLBC to see if you could put in a want ad for it.
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Last edited by Lynn Quinn : 06-13-2007 at 11:10 PM.
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