Someone kindly sent me a used copy of a wonderful art history book, which fills some serious gaps in my own book collection and has fabulous text. It will go nicely with my DVD art history courses.
Nineteenth-Century European Art by Petra ten-Doesschate Chu. I received a paperback copy of the first edition from ABE. It was only $3.50 plus shipping so I worried about the condition but it is in fine condition. I often find that buying an earlier edition of a book saves a lot of money without missing crucial information, and it was a great gift!
I put this one on and off my wish list for months: The Art of Urban Sketching: Drawing On Location Around The World by Gabriel Campanario, but I finally bought it. I have quite a collection of art books about other people’s sketchbooks so thought it might be redundant, but this has a lot of buildings and municipal sites and I find that sort of thing interesting.
There is an online urban sketching presence with sub-groups around the world. Groups are things I don’t care to be involved with, but the influence of people secure enough to draw in public and thus draw freely what’s interesting to them is something I like. I see the insistence that plein air work is the ONLY correct way rather tiresome, but there is something magical for the sensory memory in sketching like this and a challenge to working outside in different weather conditions.
One thing I find with such groups is that there can be an uncomfortable homogeny to the resulting work. I really like to see people find and use their own style and use of materials. It takes a while to find your own style, but as you look through books like this you can spot the people who have a distinct style, they are immediately recognizable. I like that, it’s an aim of mine, a good goal.