Review: Just Add Watercolor by Helen Birch

8:30 AM


As a visually-oriented person with a very short attention span,  Just Add Watercolor by Helen Birch was a joy to read.

A beautifully illustrated, easy-to-navigate guide to creating contemporary watercolors, pairing full-page paintings with insights and tips for artists.

This pocketable little gem uses modern works of art to illustrate painting techniques and tools. Each spread features the painting on one side and a brief write-up on the other. It's like having a little gallery in your hands! The book is divided into four sections based on the medium used: traditional watercolor, gouache, digital, and other water-based media. Below are my favorite in each field.






The book design itself is very appealing, with clean pages and each highly practical tip highlighted by wash of watercolor. The book's 5 x 7-inch size makes it very travel-friendly, indeed it's quite close to the size of many travel sketchbooks. There's also a very handy "visual index" that serves as a table of contents of sorts, with cropped thumbnails of the paintings for easy reference.



This book for the established watercolor enthusiast, one who is already familiar with basic watercolor techniques and washes. It doesn't supply formal instruction on watercolor, but instead provides wonderful inspiration to practice various techniques, in a "learn by doing" kind of approach. The different styles of painting giving much insight into what you can achieve.

One of my favorite pieces, using tones to create perspective, and the "lifting" technique to create smoke.


Just Add Watercolor by Helen Birch retails for US $21.99, or almost US $17 at Amazon.


Disclaimer: I received this book from the Blogging for Books program for review. This post contains affiliate Amazon links. Read my full disclaimer here.

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Majority of the products you see here are purchased by me. Products that are provided by companies for consideration will contain a footnote indicating that fact, as will affiliate links. Rest assured that all reviews are written with my honest opinion.

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