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Colored Pencil Painting Portraits: Master a Revolutionary Method for Rendering Depth and Imitating Life Paperback – June 20, 2017
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"Get ready for a revolutionary way to use colored pencils!"
—Sally Robertson, editor in chief of Colored Pencil Magazine
"This is a must have book for all colored pencil artists--not just those interested in portraiture but those looking to really understand and master the art of colored pencils."
—Ivor Harrison, The Art Gear Guide
"Colored Pencil Painting Portraits is a wealth of information and instruction, and it is a joy to watch how Alyona brings her rich, beautiful portraits to life."
—Australia Colored Pencil Association
About the Author
ALYONA NICKELSEN is a contributing writer for Colored Pencil magazine and the author of Colored Pencil Painting Bible. Her work has been featured in numerous publications, including American Artist, The Artist's Magazine, and American Art Collector. Nickelsen's paintings have been exhibited and won awards in prestigious national and international juried shows, such as Salmagundi Club, the American Artist Professional League, Audubon Artists, and the Colored Pencil Society of America. She is the creator and instructor of the Colored Pencil Painting Learning Center hosted on her website, www.brushandpencil.com.
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Top customer reviews
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While I don't think that this would be a book that I would recommend for someone just starting with colored pencils (her Colored Pencil Painting Bible would, though) anyone that has used colored pencils seriously would be inspired by the theory and application techniques she brilliantly explains and illustrates in this book. It stays within arms'-reach for me!!
This isn't a "learn to draw" book this is a book that teaches the medium and method to get a painterly look. Colored pencils come in several different varieties wax based, oil based, water soluble, etc.There are several additional products to use with colored pencils, water, oms, and more. I do think the book is a little heavy on the promotion of her new products for colored pencil but they do work and this is HER method. If getting an old masterly type look for your portraits isn't what you want or learning to actually draw people freehand is what you are looking for this isn't the book for you but if wanting to learn how to produce and bring life with that painterly look in your portraits this is the book for you. It's well written, beautifully printed and easy to read. She takes you step by step with colors and techniques for all different skin tones.
I only wish there were a few actual tutorials of a complete person instead there are sections showing you how to do your own portraits. There is a divided section for different facial features such as nose, eyes, etc.
I am really enjoying this book and will definitely use it as a reference and can't wait to try this method.
But, can colored pencils really be on a par with oils? If you are after painterly, impasto effects, those lush thick passages of color and texture that only paint can deliver, or if you want to work on a very large scale, then colored pencils probably aren’t going to satisfy you. If your goal is hyper-realism, you can achieve saturated or subtle gradations of color, highly realistic effects, and exceptionally fine detail with colored pencils—-and they supposedly can compete with oil paintings. To work in a “classical realist” manner, you actually have to have the same understanding of color, of underpainting and glazing, to work with colored pencils as you do with oils. So, if you are happy with oil painting, why switch? Cost is one argument—-colored pencils are less expensive. There’s no mess, no cleanup—-which is great if you don’t have a lot of space to work in. Alyona Nickelson’s book isn’t really about trying to convert all painters to colored pencil, but showing colored pencil artists of all levels of experience and skill the new , advanced possibilities of this “humble” medium. With recently developed special fixatives, blenders and highlighting products, extensive layering is now possible. And whereas the recommended support for colored pencils has always been a fairly smooth cotton paper, there is now another option—-sanded papers or boards.
But colored pencil work is labor intensive and to work successfully in colored pencil—-even with all the new products and techniques—-you had better have big reserves of patience. Producing fine art takes patience no matter what your medium but getting the effects you want is slow going. I can tell you this from experience. It’s not necessarily a negative—if that’s how you like to work, but it can be trying for someone used to achieving the same results more quickly in oil or acrylic.
I purchased this book because—-having used oil and acrylic extensively—- I wanted to re-acquaint myself with colored pencils. I tried the sanded paper and did not like it—-but of course this is a personal preference. I tried hot press watercolor paper and that was better, but I still did not get the results I could get with oils on paper prepared for oil. I really did like the brand of colored pencils she recommends for a lot of her work—-Faber Castell Polycolor—-but will probably end up using them in conjunction with oil paint or graphite.