[BOOKS] ✬ Alla Prima: Everything I Know About Painting Author Richard Schmid – Motyourdrive.co.uk

10 thoughts on “Alla Prima: Everything I Know About Painting

  1. says:

    I ve been an artist all of my life but that doesn t mean I ve spent the adequate amount of time learning my craft After all, I like to paint, sculpt, animate and write so with so many different disciplines, I pick my teachers carefully to keep from wasting my time As I looked at my paintings from college 1984 1988 I was frustrated with my lack of experience By the mid 90s I was growing afraid to paint because I primarily work in black and white pencil or inks on paper I looked for a one stop painting guide and a much better painter than I recommended Alla Prima Everything I Know about Painting by Richard Schmid.It s an understatement to say that Richard Schmid is a great painter Go take a look at his sampling of oil paintings and you ll see that he knows what he s doing I haven t met someone who didn t respect what he s doing and that s saying a lot given the diversity of opinion in the arts But being able to paint is one discipline and being able to teach is another I ve taken many art classes from a lot of different teachers and found that being a good painter doesn t always translate to being a good teacher In fact, I find that combination rare But Richard Schmid is both and he displays both a mastery of painting and teaching in book form, which is a hard enough task.I started reading Alla Prima my normal skeptical self I figured the 95.00 price tag was just to look at Schmid s beautiful painting and that the teaching side would be the usual vague garbage, poorly written and poorly thought out Within a few pages I realized that Schmid was actually teaching me something By half way through the book I started to see my paintings and subject matter in a different light and by the end of the book I was ready to paint Now, this is going to be a pretty big claim, but it s true After reading Schmid s book my painting launched ahead by probably four years of instruction I committed to doing one oil painting every Sunday for a year I ended up beating that and doing about 61 paintings I don t want to make it sound easy, because it was still hard I had to put in the work and break my old habits and replace the way I saw things with what Schmid was saying That s actually a disadvantage to those of us who are primarily self taught, we have to back away from our lazy bad habits and turn the Queen Mary in another direction But there was instant improvement and I was working on difficult subject matter primarily portraits of people I know.I also need to add that I used the Zorn limited pallet 5 colors to keep me from getting into too much trouble but I was able to paint, it looked like the subject I was trying to paint and Schmid has given me things to think about I still mull over twenty years after I read it This book is not for beginners, though beginners who read it will be taking a step in the right direction But if you re a painter and you want some good principles to work from, I highly recommend Alla Prima Oh, and if you think the 95 is expensive, try taking a class or even buying a few tubes of oil paint It s cheap and it saved me years of time which I consider a real value.

  2. says:

    Absolutely the best Every painter should read this book by the master

  3. says:

    A must have art book for artists

  4. says:

    Here s an enjoyable read for the serious hobbyist or professional Imagine sitting down with a master painter while he attempts to impart some wisdom about his craft The author is a renowed oil painter, and the book focuses often on portrait figure painting, but the principlesalso apply other kinds of painting.This is not a typical procedural book with step by step exercises Instead, the author offers his thoughts on the principles of painting, his process and his motivation It may not be as relevant or useful to beginner as it will be to an intermediate painter If you re very new to painting and can t relate to the book, you may wish to return to it after you ve got some experience under your belt.I particularly enjoyed the book because I like the author s attitude Near the beginning of the book, he states If you want to be famous, get into politics, or crime, or show business, or sports If you paint just to get rich, shame on you If you paint because you must do it or die, you are my kind of painter, read on He also offers several pieces of advice that have helped my paintings, such as If there is ever a conflict in your mind between what you know and what you are seeing, paint what you see Looseness , as I am fond of pointing out, should be the way a painting appears, not how it is accomplished We are not usually conscious of hard edges in our peripheral vision, which is why them seem unreal when scattered throughout a painting We are aware of hard edges at or near the point we focus on Light does not lighten or darken without also changing color He also offers do s and don ts for squinting, and detailed discussions about seeing colors edges, which I found very helpful My favorite parts of the book, however, are the philosophical discussions, particularly near the end of the book Here is a quote that sums up a long held opinion of mine about the role of a painter and the importance of discipline Awareness and deep response are the beginning of any poetic act, but they are common human experiences, not exclusively artistic, and everyone has them What sets you apart from the rest of humanity is your ability to give visual form to an idea the skill to transform it into something than merely the insight or perception alone.

  5. says:

    Excellent for intermediate to advanced painters Schmid has a gift for distilling art ideas into clear and easy to understand everyday language, which is often hard to find in an artist or art book He is truly a gifted teacher, and in turn has helped me become a better teacher There are things I read in this book that I knew instinctively, but never could articulate quite as precisely and coherently as Schmid does It has helped me to focus my efforts in the right places and to systematically analyze problems in my paintings On top of it all, he delivers his wisdom and advice in a conversational tone, interspersed with humor and honesty This book was truly a pleasure to read and is highly recommended

  6. says:

    This is one of those books that will always present some new information no matter how many times one has read it Richard Schmid is one of the truly great artists of our time and in this particular book he discusses so many of the aspects of painting that lends that certain touch of mastery that many artists seek From perception, control, color, and even confidence, the reader is given suggestions, based on Schmid s experience, on how to achieve confidence in one s painting I particularly liked his discussion about softening edges and lines Chapter 6 to control the viewer s perception of the art work this is a strategy that I have experienced in some of my art classes This is an excellent book for anyone who seeks to improve their work or for that shot in the arm to get out the colors and brushes It is a purchase that I am glad to have made and highly recommend it to anyone who loves, and enjoys, making art.

  7. says:

    This is a sophisticated how to book It wasn t what I thought it was going to be It is a discussion on techniques in painting focusing on the author s own work Makes sense he uses his work to illustrate his point But I was looking for of an art history discussion.

  8. says:

    Plodding through Clarkson s and finding the author irritatingly Victorian, condescending to beginners, and sexist, I turned to Schmid and devoured it practically in one sitting Schmid is charming, entertaining, and most of all encouraging

  9. says:

    A must read book for oil painters I have learnt tons of things from this single book.

  10. says:

    Incredible read Must have for artists of any level and any medium

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