Saturday Art Haul

So, last night I ordered two books by James Gurney who happens to be an artist that I quite admire and follow very regularly through his blog and YouTube. In particular, he seems to specialize in water media such as casein, gouache, and watercolour with a strong emphasis on casein these days.

In any case, the first book is Imaginative Realism which is basically a book on learning how to paint what you see in your mind's eye as opposed to working from the real world. If you have ever seen the Dinotopia books by James, I think you'll quickly agree that imaginative realism is something he has nailed down quite remarkably well!

The second book is Color and Light which is about to create that realistic combination that is fundamental to the illusion being produced on the canvas or paper. The book delves through types of lighting, angles, shadows, and so much more. Even when he uses fantastic creatures as subject, drawing from his immense imagination, the colours and lighting seem so real and accurate that it makes the subject feel that way as well.

So, the first part of my art haul are two fantastic, hefty, books by a widely regarded artist. I've linked to the Canadian Amazon versions of the books, so you'll need to adjust your site if you're interested in acquiring these books as well. You can also wait until I do a review after reading them, but that might take a while!

The second part of my art haul is gouache! Lots and lots of gouache! 15 colours along with a larger of Permanent White and Ivory Black. My goal here was to create a split primary palette and add to it with earth and green colours to round out for landscape. So, for the curious, the split primary colour set is:

  • Ultramarine Blue (warm)
  • Pthalo Blue (cool)
  • Cadmium Red (warm)
  • Permanent Alizarin Crimson (cool)
  • Permanent Yellow Deep (warm)
  • Lemon Yellow (cool)
The earth colours:
  • Yellow Ochre
  • Red Ochre
  • Burnt Sienna
  • Raw Umber
  • Burnt Umber
The greens:
  • Sap Green
  • Viridian
  • Olive Green
I also added a Neutral Grey to complement the Permanent White and Ivory Black shades.

Anyways, the driver for getting the gouache was a painting I was planning for a cousin of mine. I want to create a wintery pine scene and while I also plan to use watercolour in this, I wanted to be able to use the opacity of gouache to form the closer elements and have the opacity cover where needed. Since I had long planned to get gouache in the first place, this just spurred the decision on. The best part was the expression on the checkout clerk's face when I put the basket in front of her! She then proceeded to warn me that this was going to be an expensive purchase. I knew that already... and besides it's a pay week. :)