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Making Color Sing Paperback – April 1, 2000


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Paperback, April 1, 2000
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Watson-Guptill; New edition edition (April 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0823029921
  • ISBN-13: 978-0823029921
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 8.3 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #482,663 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Jeanne Dobie, a teacher and painter whose work is shown widely and often wins coveted awards, lives in Pennsylvania.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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See all 40 customer reviews
Jeanne Dobie's book is fabulous.
Sarnu in Berkeley
I highly recommend this book to every painter.
Diane L Chanako Turner
Very easy to read, useful information.
Amanda

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

48 of 49 people found the following review helpful By Joanna Daneman #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 13, 2004
The talented Jeanne Dobie does a lot of her work in the sun-drenched Florida Keys. While there are many good books on color and pigment, Dobie explains how light in a painting scene shifts moment by moment and how you have to be ready to capture that brilliant moment with the right palette.
The book gives advice on which colors to put in a limited palette for brilliance. (As anyone who has done watercolor even for a short time knows, there are hundreds of colors available, but when you MIX them, sometimes you get a flat, dull result that looks like mud on the paper.) Choosing a limited and CORRECT palette for the painting you are going to do is one of the most critical steps after creating the composition. Dobie includes important facts about which paints stain the paper (and cannot be lifted up again), which are transparent and can be used as a wash or glaze, and which paints are opaque. And if you follow the "purist" rule of no white paint, you learn how to leave the whites (use the paper for brilliant whites) and no black paint (which causes a visual hole in the paper.) Instead, Dobie shows the student painter how dark colors like brown or a visual black can be mixed that still look luminous and interesting on the paper. This is a very difficult technique to master--shadow detail can make or break a painting.
I disagree with one of her points, however, on mixing greens. While it is true that green pigments direct from the tube are far more brilliant and transparent than any you can mix, I find certain mixed greens from yellows and blues to be subtle for shadowed foliage, and sometimes the pure paint greens are jarring and unnatural to me. I tried to follow this "use unmixed" greens rule, and I end up mixing mine anyway, though I own many shades of green paints.
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46 of 53 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 6, 2004
Jeanne Dobie's book was recommended in the watercolor class I took and at first when I looked at the pictures I was not interested as I do not care for Dobie's style as illustrated in the book and would never buy the book based on her work. However, after borrowing the teacher's copy I began reading the text and found the information valuable and useful after trying the suggested exercises. Dobie's book along with Tom Hill's The Watercolorist's Complete Guide to Color combine as excellent references for learing to use color pigments and making colors "sing" instead of making mud.
I am giving Dobie's book 1 instead of 5 stars as it seriously needs updating considering some of the pigments Dobie uses are not lightfast and the inclusion of more modern pigments that replace these non-lightfast pigments would be useful all considering the book was first published in 1986, which is 18 years ago. The lightfast references I am going by are Hilary Page and Michael Wilcox's books analyizing watercolor pigments.
Aside from Dobie's use of some outdated pigments (see handprint.com) the book is an excellent reference and her advice as to color mixing valuable.
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52 of 61 people found the following review helpful By Nigel on April 24, 2005
What are all these 5 star reviewers thinking??? Aureolin and rose madder--Dobie's recommended yellow and red primaries, are extremely fugitive--they fade in a short time.
Because of this alone, the book should be vigorously rejected as coming from dubious authority. Her plan for making colors "sing," by the way, involves placing an occassional bright color in a field of grays or browns, mixed not from earth pigments, but from (fugitive) primaries. It would be irresponsible of me to perpetrate such a book on an unsuspecting public by giving it any stars at all. Unfortunately, Amazon doesn't have a "zero" stars option. If you want a superior book that will show you much better ways to make colors "sing," get "Perfect Color Choices for the Artist," by Michael Wilcox.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Anya on July 7, 2006
I have been painting for many years and keep on referring back to this book over and over, because the principles therein are so helpful. Clearly presented, basic "truths" about color and design that will lift the caliber of what you produce--why? Because you will paint with knowledge and the confidence that accompanies knowledge. I've read most of the books out there on watercolor, but this one is Queen of them all! Happy painting!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Paula Parker on December 23, 2004
This has become one of the most valuable watercolor reference books I've ever used. Beautifully illustrated and clearly explained by an artist with timeless technique and an elegantly sensitive style. No wasted text here! I've worn it out and am buying my second copy!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Marialice on July 17, 2001
'Making Colors Sing' by Jeanne Dobie is a reference book every watercolorist should own. This book is a helpful resource that can be read over and over again to examine color theory in depth. For anyone who would like to reach new levels in their paintings using color, Jeanne Dobie takes you on an adventure in color techniques and beyond with each exciting chapter. Her pictures are absolutely beautiful and she successfully achieves her goal in 'Making Colors Sing'. I only wish this book was available in hardcover because I am wearing my paperback version out! I look forward to the next book Jeanne may write on watercolor or art technique. This book was very helpful. Thanks a million.
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