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on 1 December 2009
I got this book to help with a painting module at uni and I'm so glad I opted for this one over a smaller, cheaper one. It's stuffed full of new ideas, suggestions for different mediums to use with acrylics, different techniques, artists step by step guides and detailed pages telling you all about brushes, tools, paints and colours.

It lets you know about all the wonderful ways you can use acrylics, like mock water colour or with pastels, and the step by step guides with pictures enable you to see how to do these things yourself. It's basically a way to help better understand acrylic and build up your own skill, so that the aspiring acrylic artist will be all set to go.

The book itself is bright and hard backed which covers a spiral metal spine so that pages can open right up and be laid flat. It's also resonably small so is perfect for taking about with you.

I'd give this book one hundred out of ten if I could!
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on 4 November 2010
I bought this book two years ago as I wanted to start painting again, after a lapse of thirty years. I wanted find out what is new in paint choice etc. This book is excellent covering paints, mediums, brushes, boards. Full of techiques and inspiration it is written in an easy, friendly manner and is a great book to start off with. I have seen the compainon book about mixing colours which looks a useful book for somebody like me who is a lazy colour mixer. Once my granddaughter of eleven became interested in art it was the first book I thought to buy her, I hope she enjoys it too.
The next book I would recommend is Acrylics Workshop 2 by DK books and if you want to paint landscapes the John Hammond books ,Free Expression in Acrylics and Capturing Light,by Batesford books are truly inspirational.
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on 10 January 2010
A superb little book with lots of valuable information. A definate for all lovers of acrylic painting. Great ideas and how to use different mediums with easiy to follow projects. Well worth the money and one of the best books around. Colour illustrations and clarity of detail really good. Hihgly recommended, very pleased and many thanks for a brilliant book.
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on 8 January 2010
This book wasn't what I was expecting. I was expecting something full of "how to do" examples as I would have expected an "Esssential Reference" to be....but it wasn't. Sure, there was good information to be found in it but as a new painter, it lacked enough "how to do" examples. It had plenty of pictures showing people painting this and that but not enough guides on how they achieved their effects etc. For me it wasn't complete and comprehensive enough to be an "Essential Reference", so my copy went back I'm afraid. I prefer "Quick & Clever Acrylics" by Michael Sanders, but I guess it depends what you are looking for.
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on 25 July 2011
This is a REFERENCE book which is what I wanted. I notice one reviewer was disappointed as it was not a 'how to do book'.
The clue to the content in this book is in the title!
It is suitable for beginners and intermediate painters. There are plenty of ideas regarding techniques and effects. And for advanced painters it is quite a useful book to flick through every now and again as a sort of 'aide memoire'.
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on 26 June 2014
A very helpful read for anyone just beginning with Acrylics. It answers a lot of questions about the medium
and helps to solve some problems that crop up with practical advice on some tricky subjects you may want to paint
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on 15 February 2014
This is a very informative book which needs to be read carefully to pick up the many tips and instructions for different types of painting with acrylic paint. A lot of information in very few pages and very useful especially for the beginner in this medium.
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on 4 March 2013
I got this book because of the other reviews I'd read and I'm glad I did.
Im new to acrylic painting in that Ive only had a few brushes and a few tubes of paint to work with.
This book opened up a big variety of types of medium,tools,basic to pro tips. I had no idea acrylic painting had so much involved!
What I liked the most is that it didnt tell you the most expensive ways of accumulating your materials, it just tells you whats out there and gives good recommendations for basic or pro.
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on 14 February 2012
The book is packed with useful information. The colour mixing guides I found very useful. The only snag, which won't be a problem for everyone, is that the small format made it quite difficult to read. Alternatively it is pocket size and would travel well.
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on 15 April 2014
This was my first art book and I didn't find it very helpful. There is a lot of information in the book but it's not practical and a little confusing. It is more like an encyclopedia and less like a how to. I would not recommend it for a first time artist wanting to know how to paint; but it might be useful for someone who needs a reference book.
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