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Alla Prima: A Contemporary Guide to Traditional Direct Paintingby Al Gury
Synopses & Reviews
This comprehensive guide explores one of the great traditions of Western painting: alla prima, or direct, painting. Bold brushwork and a painterly surface are the hallmarks of this renowned technique, and one of the great masters of alla prima was Arthur DeCosta, the legendary Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts teacher. In Alla Prima, author Al Gury reveals the step-by-step lessons he learned in his years of study with DeCosta. From start to finish, with clear explanations of color mixing, palettes, drawing and layering, structure, brushwork, and more, Gury guides readers through the full alla prima process. Portraiture, still life, figure, and landscapes are explored, all illustrated with the work of the greats, from Rubens, Rembrandt, and Velazquez, through Degas, Manet, and Cezanne, to Sargent and Whistler. Today alla prima is the ideal choice for artists who want to return to skill-based training yet retain a contemporary styleand Alla Prima is the perfect guide to the technique.
Book News Annotation:
Writing for students and artists, Gury (painting, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts) presents a guide to direct painting and discusses its history, materials, color, and techniques like paint layering and blending, brushwork, simple glazing, depth perception, and making oil sketches and copies of masterworks. He instructs readers on each step in creating the four major genres--portrait, figure, still life, and landscape--and considers the work of his mentor Arthur DeCosta, and examples by painters such as Thomas Anshutz, Cecilia Beaux, Thomas Eakins, El Greco, Robert Henri, Giorgio Morandi, John Singer Sargent, and Diego Velazquez. Annotation ©2009 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
About the Author
Al Gury chairs the painting department at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia. His work is exhibited at the F.A.N. Gallery in Philadelphia, where he lives.
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