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4.4 out of 5 stars
8
4.4 out of 5 stars


TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 5 August 2011
Those of you who are familiar with Barbara Rae`s work will not be surprised to discover that her "throw everything you need to at the canvas" paintings derive from "throw everything you need to at the paper" sketches. The preface to the book informs us that Rae uses acrylics for her sketches, but I think its likely that she adds some chalks or oil pastels and a dip or sketching pen to her armoury as well.
This book is likely to come as a shock to those who think sketchbooks are those little ring-bound things that should be filled with neat, detailed pencil doodles; Rae`s sketches are - as you'd expect - direct, quickly established compositions with specific elements picked out, colour ranges and passages of interest explored; they are bold, splashy, trickly, worked-over pieces and although these are just working material for something bigger, most of them could be pleasingly framed as they are - they have a resolved completeness about them, taking on a poetic quality. Almost all are landscape-derived, coming close to abstract in appearance just like her paintings. The closest comparison I could make in describing them would be, perhaps, similar sketches by John Piper - but that's a ball-park comparison at best, Rae has her own visual language and range of mark-making.
This handsome volume contains around 130 full-page, full-colour illustrations; an interesting and inspiring book to look through, there are only a few brief pages of text. The only thing missing is any listing of dimensions, but that's not crucial given that the presence of written notes on most of the sketchbook pages can help determine the likely scale.
I bought this book for myself - its always interesting to see other artist's sketch-work - but I'll be showing it to my painting students - it is an excellent example of how a working artist collects material on the spot without getting tangled-up in detail.
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on 19 December 2012
Loads of quality images with enough background information to let you know how the artist works. I bought it based on one image, so I was taking a chance. You need to give this book time, and the more you look, the more you'll see. The sketches are very subtle and well worth going back to again and again. I am really glad I made the purchase. If you are interested in sketching outdoors and are looking for encouragement and a springboard to get you going then you can't go wrong here!
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on 27 January 2013
I saw this book on line when I was looking for Per Kirkby book. Both inspire me with their ideas about landscape sketching and painting, free style and use of colour palettes I will be using this book to help me capture the landscape around the area I live.
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on 27 July 2011
Barbara Rae's sketchbooks are fundamental to her strong, vibrant paintings. An essential part of the whole process, showing structure and colour references. Very interesting and inspiring.
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on 16 July 2011
what a marvellous book. if you are an admirer of Barbara Rae's work this the book for you! It gives an insight as to how she first approaches the landscape. the reproductive quality is superb.i would love to be able to see the world with such colurful insight!
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on 7 March 2013
A lovely book for art lovers and artists - but don't expect it to come with the cover that is illustrated on the website.
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on 20 April 2014
This book is not cheap but is worth every penny. It is beautiful and extraordinary in the variety of works it shows. The talent it demonstrates is also extraordinary.
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on 28 June 2014
Lovely images but does not give you any insight into the artist's creative process
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