Sunday, October 31, 2010

Some Reading

Ivan Kramskoy. Sophia Kramskaya Reading. 1863. Oil on canvas. 
The Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, Russia.

A student had asked if I could hand out a list of books, blogs and internet sites to read. I can't stress enough how important it is to constantly be reading about your craft. Read stacks of books, blogs and sites written by artists you like and admire. In this way you will get an understanding of how a painter works and thinks. You need to get the brain of a painter. The "red and blue makes purple" information or suggestions of special mediums to mix with your paint are not as important as the bigger ideas. I also suggest you read mostly dusty, old books, the older the better often. Many of the bigger ideas of painting have been lost to the majority of working painters. So many of the instructional step by step books you see today will teach  tricks, but will not make you a better painter. Surprisingly, most of the books I most strongly recommend have few if any pictures, and if they do, it is a great painting that demonstrates the execution of one of these bigger ideas.
I will try to post links to the books on Amazon. Some of these I have posted before, over time I will try to give the entire list. Paul Ingbretson, my painting teacher, gave us a great two page list of books that, if read, have all the information one would need to become a world class painter. It was an adjusted list that he got from his teacher, Gammell.

In a few posts, I will provide links to the books, starting with the ones I strongly suggest.

 Strongly suggested:

The Boston Painters 1900-1930
Twilight of Painting
Dennis Miller Bunker
The shop-talk of Edgar Degas

This next one is an electronic version, and is not a format I would recommend. You can find this one online for free. Click Here

VELAZQUEZ by R.A.M. Stevenson

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hey,'ve made it so easy!!!