Saturday, November 27, 2010

"Color and Light" and Making a Mark

Color and Light by James Gurney is published 30th November
Last week I received my review copy of James Gurney's new book Color and Light: A Guide for the Realist Painter. It is published next Tuesday 30th November.

James is well known to most of you because of his blog Gurney Journey - where a lot of the content of this book first surfaced.  If you don't know this and want to learn more about art techniques I highly recommend you subscribe to his blog.

I can tell you now - aftr a fast skim read aand before I've even read properly from cover to cover - that this is going to be THE most helpful book for all those interested in or wanting to know more about colour and light for drawing and painting.  I've now even got a name for one of the colour/light effects I've puzzled about for a very long time "Reverse Atmospheric Perspective"!  Plus that's a stunning cover!

It's also currently the #1 best selling painting book on Amazon!

Recommended Reading

However the real purpose of this blog post is to do a small toot for Making A Mark!

I was sat on the tube going to my monthly meet-up with my Drawing group yesterday (see Giant red nosed reindeer in Covent Garden!) and put Color and Light in my backpack to read on the tube.

By the time I got out at Embankment I had a great big silly smile all over my face.

That's because in the section at the end devoted to Recommended Reading,  James has included an Internet Resources section.  This, of course, includes sites like Bruce McEvoy's Handprint plus David Brigg's HueValueChroma and Tony Johnson's Paintingmaking sites - PLUS it also references this blog!  James never told me! by Katherine Tyrell.  Various resources for artists, including summaries about color theory with additional links.
This reference dates back to my big Colour Project in 2008.  References to the posts on this blog are all now neatly organised and explained in this resource site Learning about Color - Online Projects.

The idea back in 2008 was as follows
I like colour, I respond to colour and people frequently compliment me on my use of colour in my drawings.  But do I know enough about colour? I don't think so!

In my colour project in 2008 I focused on colour with a view to becoming better at understanding and using colour. The idea was to:
  • remind myself of what I do know - so it gets bedded down even further into the braincells
  • then work out what I don't know and find out about as much of that as possible in the time.
  • Plus along the way I hopefully identify all the things which currently I don't know I don't know about - and learn about those too!!!


  1. congratulations ! but then your blog is so full of information -for a few years now too! Being a blogger myself I know thats no easy task --thank you for your thorough insightful writings.

  2. Is the book focused on oil or watercolor?


    Michael Hampton

  3. Hi Meera - thanks so much for that comment. It's always nice to know that this blog is appreciated.

  4. Hi Michael. This is not a "how to" media book which tells you how to paint in oil or watercolour.

    It's a book on how to create light in your paintings when creating art and how to use colour to best effect.

    If you click the link and go to the Amazon page you can then click the "see inside" and read the table of contents. That will probably help you best understand what it has to offer at this stage.

    In summary, this book tells you about all the things artists used to be taught - that now get omitted from an awful lot of books which supposedly tell you how to paint.

  5. Sounds tempting Kath. WIll probably get it. there are more and more books coming out focusing on ‘lost skills’ that ‘artist used to be taught’. I think Albala’s Landscape book is another one. He writes pretty good about colour and light too.

  6. I agree.

    The books I recommend these days are all the ones that reach back into the lost skill base which has been dumped by publishers who only want the simplest stuff possible for complete newbies!

    I'm very impressed by James' Publishers BTW - I think he made a very good choice. They've done a really excellent production job on both books

  7. tahnks for that review Katherine, got my copy on order

    fellow artist (wildlife)


COMMENTS HAVE BEEN CLOSED AGAIN because of too much spam.
My blog posts are always posted to my Making A Mark Facebook Page and you can comment there if you wish.

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.