Book Review: Pouring Light: Layering Transparent Watercolor

Pouring Light: Layering Transparent Watercolor

Jean Grastorf has a lovely style of watercolour that's characterized by beautiful undulating washes of radiant colours. A good example is the wall of the building on the book's cover art.

In this technique book, she shows how she does just that with some in depth tutorials.

The few chapters in the book covers a few areas. Chapter 1 covers the basic materials you need, just like most books. She uses the Da Vinci brand of watercolours. Chapter two is on the designing and composition. Chapter 3 is on understanding colour theory. Chapter 4 covers her techniques and the last chapter has her guided demonstrations.

The text is concise and packed with lots of drawing tips and techniques. It covers some basics but it really complements what you already know of watercolour. So this book is best for those already with some basic knowledge of watercolours.

Her style of painting involves literally pouring watercolours onto paper. She does that to create beautiful soft transitions of colours for her backgrounds or subjects. These colours when required, form the layer beneath for further glazing. She uses a lot of masking and glazing, sometimes applying up to 3 layers of mask.

As you can tell, her process is well planned and meticulous. It's a style that requires more preparation and patience than usual watercolour paintings.

The examples of her paintings in the book are gorgeous. I wish she would publish a separate art book just for that. There are also other artists whose paintings are used when talking about certain lesson points.

This is a very insightful and inspiring book. Highly recommended to watercolour lovers.

Pouring Light is available at Amazon (US | CA | UK | DE | FR | IT | JP) and Book Depository

Pouring Light: Layering Transparent Watercolor - 01

Pouring Light: Layering Transparent Watercolor - 02

Pouring Light: Layering Transparent Watercolor - 03

Pouring Light: Layering Transparent Watercolor - 04

Pouring Light: Layering Transparent Watercolor - 05

Pouring Light: Layering Transparent Watercolor - 06

Pouring Light: Layering Transparent Watercolor - 07

Pouring Light: Layering Transparent Watercolor - 08

Pouring Light: Layering Transparent Watercolor - 09

Pouring Light: Layering Transparent Watercolor - 10

Pouring Light: Layering Transparent Watercolor - 11

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