Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Book Review: Oil Painting Techniques and Materials
This post is a review of Harold Speed's Oil Painting Techniques and Materials.
What This Book is Not
This is not an easy read. This is not a "5 simple steps to a masterpiece" type of book. The chapters are long and at points rambling. The book was originally published in 1944 - it's not a book written for the modern "scanning" reader. However...
What This Book Offers
This is a marvelous book! There aren't many books that I read that I feel like I would benefit by reading again. But, this one is an exception. I learned there are several historical approaches to painting. I learned how certain effects have been achieved. I have a blueprint to try for approaching a painting.
In all of those areas and in others, I feel like there is more for me to understand in this book. Some of it went over my head, so I would benefit from returning to this book - and plan to do so in the future.
I do see a great improvement in my painting since I started reading this book. I have a better idea of how to handle painting wet-into-wet...what happens to the color, what can be achieved, etc. (Actually, I have been painting with open acrylics, not oils, but many of the same principles apply.)