Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Modern Watercolor by Kristin Van Leuven

book cover
Modern Watercolor
by Kristin Van Leuven

ISBN-13: 9781633223561
Paperback: 128 pages
Publisher: Walter Foster Publishing
Released: Sept. 1, 2017

Source: ebook review copy from the publisher through NetGalley.

Book Description, Modified from NetGalley:
This dynamic and inspirational guide will set you down a path of exploration as you learn to play with watercolors. You will learn to effectively use basic techniques and principles to create beautiful, expressive works of art. From selecting your first watercolor paints to learning to blend colors into a unique palette, we are here to guide you as you begin your journey.

These easy-to-follow lessons will explore using watercolor on different surfaces, how to create basic shapes using fun techniques, and how to create myriad gorgeous effects that can be achieved with different brushes and strokes. You will even learn how to add layers of dimension and texture and how to work with resist techniques to create pretty patterns and gorgeous backgrounds.

My Review:
Modern Watercolor is an art instruction book for using watercolors. Kristin has a loose (not highly detailed or realistic) style. This is a good book for a beginner at watercolor as she provided plenty of pictures and clear instruction. When showing how to make a flower or animal, she explained how to achieve the desired affect rather than just a brief summary of what she did. By focusing on the techniques, the reader can learn to use watercolor not just replicate her paintings. Overall, I'd recommend this book.

She started by briefly explaining what supplies you need, then she explained basic techniques (wet-in-wet, etc.), color theory, and color mixing. She showed how the different types of brushes make a wide variety of marks, what brushes are good for certain marks, how to make basic shapes (circles, squares, etc.), and how to use watercolor brushes to make cursive lettering. She also covered various ways to preserve white and remove paint.

She showed step-by-step how to make several types of flowers, like peonies, roses (top view), pansies, tulips, and small flowers. She also demonstrated several types of leaves and foliage and how to put them all together to create wreaths (for framing text) or floral patterns (a wallpaper type look). She also did step-by-step demonstrations for several animals (fox, squirrel, chicken, pig, dog, cat, rabbit, beetle, butterfly, elephant, lion) and discussed how to create different human skin tones by mixing colors. She ended with some brief demonstrations for "abstract" landscapes (lakeside, sunset) and interiors (vintage and cottage living rooms). The animals and interiors were sketched before being filled in with paint.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

Excerpt: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.


Carole said...

I would love to be able to draw and paint! Cheers

Debbie said...

VirtualArtInstructor says anyone can do art if they practice, so just start doing it and keep practicing!