Books: Splash – The Best of Watercolor (pictures and thoughts)

I still can’t completely get used to the fact that all new books (or many) that are available at the bookstores or on Amazon, I can review, order at the local library. US Library system, especially county libraries that I’ve been going to for the past 10+ years, had saved me thousands of dollars. I don’t have to buy books (anymore!) if I just want to look through them. I can order them online from a local library, or even as far away as Nevada State with the use of Link Plus system. Love-love-love this.

So I decided that it’s a good practice for myself (as a review), and it might be useful for somebody who looks through my blog, if I start recording, taking and showing pictures and writing notes on the books that I own, borrow, review at the bookstore or order at the library.

Recently I’ve been doing much more watercolor paintings… playing with paper, trying watercolor pencils, different brands, so I’ve ordered 2 books with the review of the best watercolor images:



Splash books are featuring best of the works of different watercolor artists.

Splash Retrospective – 20 Years of contemporary watercolor (Amazon price $34.46) excellence has following sections:


I really enjoyed that this book had description and explanation on the scene from the artist, and also the detailed notes from the editor – pointing out what is interesting and special about these paintings.

Amazing detailed work – painting map and all the names, and shapes – by Peggy Flora Zalucha:


Fun shapes, a mix of reality and imagination, “levels” and scenes within scenes. Fun painting by Scott Moore.


This is the best and the most amazing, sleek, smooth portrait, done in watercolor I’ve ever seen. It is sooooo oil-like. Beautiful and so worth to be on the cover of the book.

“Hope” by Paul M. McCormack (portrait of his wife) – painting on the left:


It is rare that surrealism is getting paid in watercolors. Or at least, I am not used to these scenes. An image on the left is a surreal night, or can be taken as an image of another planet.

The image on the right is fun. Play on shapes, relationships and just look of things. Boat? No – banana.


Unusual shapes and drawings. Ladies at the bottom  of the right page (by Wendy Dawn Barnhill-Hill) are really fun older ladies characters:


This painting is a fun work of  light and shadows, play with toys – painting of Sharon Maczko:


This is the most watercolor inspirational view of New York City (Tim Saternow):


Next book – Splash 15 (Amazon price $26.58) has these sections:


I was amazed at this color (look at this even color of the paint on the page!) of the umbrella… I know from personal experience how hard it is to lay color that way, but also, that dabbed light – so playful:


it is so hard and so … fun (as a result) to paint shadows, see shapes and colors:


I am not fond of  looking and analyzing portraits and figure drawings. But I did enjoy this character (by Paul Jackson) :


Chef is so…. inspiring… he makes me want to cook and have a glass of wine:


details of the garlic (with watercolor paper texture showing through):


details … so many details… It’s busy, but can you imagine how much time was spent painting that? :


city street is inspiring:


details and such clear view of the glass of Apple store:


It was fun to look through these images. Partially inspiring, and intimidating at the same time.

More books to come 🙂

What art books are your favorite?

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