Today I’m looking at another painting book: “Acrylic Painting: Expert answers to the questions every artist asks”. I’ve been waiting for this book to arrive and then when it finally did I just read and read!
The first two chapters of the book were really and overview of acrylic paint with lots of details on how the paint is made. While this was really quite interesting, it’s wasn’t exactly what I was looking for.
The next four chapters were all about materials. It was mostly fairly useful information but again wasn’t what I wanted from the book. I wanted to learn techniques and methods which would improve my acrylic painting. (Now, every ‘how to’ type art book I’ve ever read has a chapter on materials – which is good. But this one has four and my feeling is that that is too much.)
Then, at last, at Chapter 7 (on page 106 which is half way through the book!) the book began to talk about acrylic technique. However this was quite a let down too as the explainations were not brilliantly written and the pictures alongside them didn’t really show what was going on. On top of that there was actually very, very little in the way of proper basic acylic technique there to read and even that degenerated into a set of odd experimental-type techniques which don’t really help me with becoming a good serious acrylic artist at all as far as I can see. The next chapter was about combining acrylics with other media, then there was a chapter on colour theory. Finally the book ended with a chapter on developing your own style.
Personally I found this book to be a bit of a waste of time and money. The Watercolour version of the same series was EXCELLENT with more techniques and information about actually painting seriously in watercolour than any other book I’ve found. This book was the opposite – it seemed to me to be all filler and almost no actual helpful information at all. It would make a good book on acrylic materials, or a book on the background to acrylic painting, but as a book giving answer to artists about acrylic painting I think it did quite poorly, which is a shame.
I am wanting to move on with my acrylic painting at the moment – to really develop it and become a good painter in this medium, but this book puts me off altogether. It’s almost as if acrylics are just something to experiement with and play around with. I’m sure that can’t be true. I’ve seen some truly wonderful acrylic work out there and the paints themselves are so bright and vibrant.
Just look at some of the amazing paintings on this webpage at E Art Ekstraxx
Here are a couple of the images linked from that site (please note the following beautiful images are NOT my work):
I think acrylic can be an amazing medium if done properly. If anyone reading this knows of a good acrylic technique book I would really love to hear from you in the comments!
(If you can’t find the comments, click on the title of this post to go to the post’s individual page and then scroll down to the bottom – the box should be there.) 🙂