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Watercolour Fruit and Vegetable Portraits Billy Showell

Watercolour Fruit and Vegetable Portraits By Billy Showell

Watercolour Fruit and Vegetable Portraits by Billy Showell

Condition - Like New
Out of stock


Learn how to paint realistic fruit, vegetables and blossom with this beautifully illustrated watercolour course.

Watercolour Fruit and Vegetable Portraits Summary

Watercolour Fruit and Vegetable Portraits by Billy Showell

Learn how to paint realistic fruit, vegetables and blossom with this beautifully illustrated watercolour course. Billy Showell's amazing paintings and vibrant palette are showcased here as she clearly explains how to create a huge selection of shapes and textures using detailed step-by-step instructions. Starting with basic techniques and use of colour, she shows how to capture the individuality of spiralling artichokes, the smooth contours of aubergines, the sumptuous reds of glossy peppers, the cool yellows of bananas, the subtle hues of blossom and more. Using traditional methods, overlaying washes, dry brush techniques, glazing, masking - she develops pictures that are exciting and different, sometimes with an unconventional and amusing twist that takes the images on to new, contemporary levels. Explanations on drawing, composition, lighting, painting white subjects are included, along with many different ideas and dozens of useful and helpful tips.

Watercolour Fruit and Vegetable Portraits Reviews

April 09

Books about painting flowers and trees are everywhere, but fruit and vegetables? Surely they belong in the garden or the kitchen...A look into this lovely book will reveal otherwise, and show the rose in every cabbage. Paintings reminiscent of early 19th century botanicals rub shoulders with the more playful, modern studies and will surely make you see fruit and veg in a new light. Last year I reviewed this author's Watercolour Flower Portraits (look in the site archives) and was impressed but it is easy to make flowers look good. Now Ms Showell shows you how to get the most out of a wide range of fruit and vegetables. The paintings leap off the pale backgrounds and manage to look luscious and juicy, show off their interesting shapes and often their accompanying flowers. Of course there is the usual shopping list of what you need together with some hints as to how to use some ordinary objects for art, as well as composition, working from photographs and keeping a sketchbook. I like the color mixing section that instead of blobs shows appropriately colored vegetables (yellow bananas for example) and the playful compositions that make still life seem more lively and less still. There are lots of examples to work though showing how to make lemons look knobbly and aubergines too shiny to name two examples, as well as longer studies to copy with staged photographs. I particularly liked the section on painting white vegetables on white paper and making them stand out, and overall I thought that you can learn a lot of tricks of the trade from this book that you can apply to many other types of painting. This is an impressive primer, and suitable for a wide range of abilities.

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April 09

I can't tell you how excited I was to receive this book. Billy's last book had kept me enthralled with the way she replicates flowers in an almost botanical style and yet renders them into lively and interesting paintings. To have this covering fruit and vegetables was bound to be something special and I was not disappointed. As Billy says - the beauty of painting fruit and vegetables is that they are readily available, and of course cover a huge range of colours and shapes. She begins with advice on the selection of materials, telling us what she personally uses and why. Starting with drawing the subject she says that with time and practice drawing is a skill anyone can acquire, and the key is observation of the plant and the way it is structured. Observe it thoroughly before you begin making notes of any special features such as textures and pattens. Following this advice there are numerous small sketches and paintings of different subjects and billy gives useful hints on what is important about each, such as the pattern on the strawberry and the necessity to measure sections to ensure you have the subject in correct proportions. She explains how essential it is to take time to create an interesting composition. One of the things I particularly love about Billy's work is her quirky and fun compositions that bring life to her paintings. She says when selecting fruit or vegetables for painting to look for those with interesting shapes or textures. She also says how useful it is to have a small sketchbook for recoding material and ideas that are available but you may not have the time to paint them at that moment. Unlike inanimate objects often used for still life fruit, vegetables and flowers only have a fleeting time for you to paint them. One very useful tip she gives is to use tracing paper to transfer a drawing you've made onto watercolour paper. By keeping your original drawing onto sketch paper which will take erasing you don't destroy the surface of the watercolour paper with an eraser by changing the composition as you work. Billy explains how she uses lighting to create shadows on her works which add another dimension of interest,and tempers this with advice to check the rules before working on a piece for a particular exhibition as this is sometimes barred. There is so much information she covers on colour and colour mixing, lighting and the many techniques she uses that the reader will be engrossed for hours. Armed with this advice and plenty of practice one should be able to work on one's own composition as Billy's advice is just so comprehensive and easily understood, being accompanied by an excellent selection of illustrations for each technique. As well as the simpler sections for the more beginner artist there are some fabulous demonstrations at the end of the book to capture the interest of the more advanced painter. This beautifully illustrated and unusual book will be one the artist will want to return to again and again, not just to work from but to enjoy the fabulous paintings it contains. A terrific present for any watercolour artist.

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About Billy Showell

Billy Showell graduated from St Martins School of Art with a B.A. in fashion design, but was irresistibly drawn to painting and illustration. She is now a renowned botanical fine artist and tutor. Billy works from her studio in Kent and teaches via her online school of botanical art. She also travels to teach throughout the UK, the USA and Australia. Billy has been awarded many awards for botanical excellence from the Society of Botanical Artists; a gold medal from the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh; and a Royal Horticultural Society silver-gilt medal. She has written and illustrated four best-selling practical art books which have been translated into many languages. Billy's paintings are collected by her followers the world over and held in many prestigious botanical collections. Visit her website

Additional information

Watercolour Fruit and Vegetable Portraits by Billy Showell
Used - Like New
Search Press Ltd
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
The book has been read, but looks new. The book cover has no visible wear, and the dust jacket is included if applicable. No missing or damaged pages, no tears, possible very minimal creasing, no underlining or highlighting of text, and no writing in the margins

Customer Reviews - Watercolour Fruit and Vegetable Portraits