Show me an abstract book and I'll bang on about how the style is as much about a state of mind as it is about techniques. I'll also say that the skills you need are mostly the ones you already have. Am I about to contradict myself, then? Well, no. Paint is paint, brushes are brushes and they all do what they do. However, there is a certain shorthand that can help in the ultimate aim of abstract painting, which is to make your viewer feel the same as you do about what you saw. This means that shapes and colours become pre-eminent, but you can also use textures to emphasise them and draw the viewer into and around the image in a particular way. The contents list includes terms like Negative Line, Textile Texture and Sketching Using Liquid Paint. Telling you this tells you the facts, but it doesn't tell you how it all works and you really have to see it to get the idea. The book itself is arranged as a series of studies (being neither demonstrations nor deconstructions) which include several illustrations, notes and a work sequence. I'm not sure you'd necessarily want to follow one through, or that you're meant to. If you're already a fan of abstraction, then this is the next logical step.-Artbookreview.net Previous books on abstraction by Rolina van Vliet have proved very popular and brought the art of non-representational painting to a wide audience. This new title is arranged as a course and is well-structured, with a series of deconstructed studies on specific techniques - including textures, knifework, gels or collage. In her introduction Rolina emphasises the need to develop technical skills in order to learn a visual language and this is very much the focus of the book. This differentiates it from other works on abstraction that tend to focus on the creative aspects of the style. It makes a valuable addition to any library and is as much a celebration as a guide.-The Artist Following on from her other two successful books from the same publisher, Rolina shows 50 studies, demonstrating a wide variety of techniques. The paintings include different media such as oil pastel, acrylic, collage, chalk, gels and how to include sand, text and print in your work. 350 images show work in progress and finished work. This book is a way to build your own visual language following the studies, tips and techniques. Each study involves a task and one or more techniques. Learn how to incorporate texture. This book is for anyone who loves to play with paint. Explore the ideas that speak to you or work through the techniques one by one. Experimentation is a good way to develop your work.-Yarnsandfabrics.co.uk/crafts A handbook for all artists, from amateurs to professionals, students to teachers. Rolina takes an in-depth look at the practical nature of painting abstracts and includes over 350 images detailing the techniques and textures she uses. There is comprehensive information on how to get started and how to structure your work, colour-mixing techniques, working with acrylics as oil and as watercolours, creating texture and dynamic elements, adding details, relief and background techniques, and mixing media. If you are keen to move your abstract work forward, this is certainly one for you.-The Leisure Painter
About the Author
Rolina van Vliet has studied at the Academy of Physical Education in Groningen, the teacher training department of Amsterdam College, and the fine arts department at the Free Academy in The Hague. She now teaches at various centres for artistic training, and has developed a new method of painting based on abstract painting. Her work varies from abstract expressionism to lyrical abstract painting, with the emphasis on spontaneity and dynamics, and with a clear preference for total abstraction. She regularly exhibits her work, has written articles for art magazines and runs workshops and courses on abstract art.