I am happy to announce that Ann Kullberg has come out with a new colored pencil instruction book especially geared for beginners: VIVID Colored Pencil – Step by Step Instruction by Irina Garmashova Cawton.
Irina is a working colored pencil artist living in the UK. If I could describe Irina’s Vivid Colored Pencil book in one word it would be: comprehensive. She covers a lot in just the first two chapters such as her recommendations for pencils, paper, and essential tools. She describes in detail why she chooses the materials she does. Composition, framing, pencil techniques (strokes, embossing, and solvents), and how to edit and take good reference photos is also covered.
The excellent advice on reference photos including photography, scanning, and digital imaging on your computer alone is worth the price of the book. The next five chapters are filled with gorgeous tutorials of subjects that are perfect for beginners to start with such as pets, still lives, and botanicals. I find it interesting that she includes modern and classical versions of the still life and botanical tutorials. The tutorials include a Black Labrador on black paper, a Golden Retriever on cream paper, a Tabby in black & white, a Ragdoll cat portrait, a metal tutorial, a wine and cheese classical still life, a modern strawberry still life, a traditional Iris botanical, and a modern poppy seed botanical.
Most tutorials come with the reference photo and line drawing. Each tutorial is filled with even more expert tips. With 159 pages, the chapters are not just a brief overview of the subject; Irina explains in detail how to do each and every step. Another plus is that she limits the colored pencil brands she uses throughout the entire book to make it more simple and accessible for beginners.
Also, I was delighted to see she included an entire chapter on airbrushing with an airbrush and dissolved watercolor pencils to achieve fantastic blurry backgrounds. Overall I would not hesitate to recommend Vivid Colored Pencil. No matter what level, I’m positive you’ll learn something you didn’t know. I know I did. You can purchase your copy here with my affiliate link: