Book Review: Painting by Design: Getting to the Essence of Good Picture-Making by Charles Reid

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This is another one of four Charles Reid's book that was reprinted in 2016. The earlier three are Pulling Your Painting Together, Painting What (You Want) to See and The Natural Way to Paint.

Now that I have all four, I noticed that there are some duplication in topics and of course subject matter. However, it seems that he Reid always has something different to say about the subject matter, as there are many ways to paint one.

Of all four books, this is probably the better one to start with first because I feel that more of the fundamentals are covered here (and elaborated on in other books).

This 146-page book covers basic drawing techniques that utilise contour drawings, seeing shapes, proportions. The later chapters are on colour and value, how to understand value, replicate them, and how to mix watercolour with a limited palette of selected colours. There's also a lesson on light and shadows, and one of composition. You'll also get to learn how to put all those into practice with the two chapters on painting figures, faces and features.

Overall, it's a very insightful book just like his other books, one that can be revisited often in the future.

Highly recommended.

Painting by Design: Getting to the Essence of Good Picture-Making (Master Class) is available at Amazon (US | CA | UK | DE | FR | IT | ES | JP | CN) and Book Depository

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