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Acrylics Unleashed
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Table of Contents

* Nine atmospheric step-by-step projects * Dynamic, imaginative techniques * Learn composition, colour mixing and how to find inspiration

About the Author

Glyn Macey can often be found roaming the harbours, moorlands and coast of his native Cornwall, sketchbook in hand, recording the details of daily life and history. Such sketches are in turn used as the basis for his studio paintings. Using acrylic, mixed media and an array of mark-making techniques he endeavours to capture the underlying essence of the landscape, and the people who live in it. Glyn uses acrylics, pencil and collage to gain the spontaneity of his work and the 'happy accidents' that he loves. He believes that the unexpected unity of colour and texture in mixed media can often create the most exciting results.

Reviews

February 2015 This book is dedicated 'to YOU, lovely artist' and that sums up the enthusiasm Glyn feels for his medium and what he can do with it. The title, too, perfectly conveys the no-hold-barred approach he brings to painting. This is a book bursting with ideas. Glyn's subjects are mostly landscapes and seascapes, but he's equally at home with buildings, trees and flowers and you get the sense that he'll turn his hand to any subject - as long as it enthuses him. His working methods are relatively unconventional and he'll often use spattering and stippling to give the sense of a background or foreground rather than paint it in detail. All this gives his work a feeling of fluidity and spontaneity that, in his capable hands, always works. This is not a book for the faint-hearted but, if you like experimenting, you'll absolutely buy into Glyn's refreshing approach and methods. For someone who apparently works straight from the top of his head, he turns out to be able to convey his methods surprisingly clearly and the step-by-step demonstrations that make up the bulk of the book are very easy to follow. If you want to take your work to a new level, but not follow the abstract route, Glyn is the perfect companion. * SAA * May 13 Macey, who strives for freedom in his work and is inspired by a more childlike approach to making art, is a bit of an evangelist for this particular medium, citing primarily acrylics' versatility in his argument for its superiority over watercolor or oil paint. The guide includes sections on materials, color, technique, composition, getting started, and projects. The technique section is quite thorough and offers tips for combining acrylic paints with collage, found materials, and text. There are plenty of step-by-step projects for the reader to try. -VERDICT Many creative readers will find this forgiving medium and open-ended guide appealing. * Library Journal, USA * Mar 13 Reading Glyn Macy's description of his medium in this new book, it's clear just how much he loves acrylics. And it's this love of the medium that this book is all about. It's about letting the paint do the talking. Play with it, experiment with it and see what it can do to your work. Glyn's style of teaching is fresh and immediate and you feel as though he's painting alongside you. His energy and enthusiasm are certainly infectious. The book opens with a description of the tools and equipment you'll need, from the paint itself, to the surface you paint on; brushes and mark-making tools to miscellaneous bits and pieces that could come in handy! Colour follows, with advice on the basic palette, limited palette and colour mixing. Glyn then moves on to some of the techniques he uses. These include stamping, spattering and flicking, scratching out and using points, rags and sponges, overpainting and using two- and three-dimensional collage, scumbling, glazing, scribbling, and finishing techniques. Each technique is clearly described, with step-by-step demonstrations to show you exactly what to do, and helpful tip boxes offering words of caution or pushing you to experiment further. The next section deals with composition and getting started - making drawings and sketches, location studies and small paintings to explore your subject. The rest of the book is taken up with nine step-by-step projects. These encourage you to explore the techniques explained earlier in the book and use them to push your work to greater limits. * Leisure Painter, The * Feb 13 Acrylics are the newest type of paint around, and the most versatile. You can use them like watercolors, or like oils, or like their own selves. If you are like Mr Macey you can even throw out the rulebook and take off on your own artistic adventure with them... Frequent readers of my reviews will know that I do like a bit of originality and a fresh approach to a subject. I also admire somebody who recycles what they already have and eschews buying the most expensive art materials in the store gets my vote every time. The author of this book does all this and more, championing student quality paints and even making his mark with house painting brushes. He also cuts up magazines and uses them in his work, as well as found objects such as sand and shells. If you are wondering where all this might lead and whether it is going to be all abstract art then think again - the work in here is mostly landscapes and seascapes, many of his native Cornwall. This is not a gallery book either, but a hand-on approach to painting and having fun while you do it complete with nine projects. All the usual things you expect to find in an art book are here of course - choosing a palette, getting different effects, composing your picture etc and also how to use found objects and those magazines. There is a stunning rendition of New York in here made of these that just says it all - a brilliant fusion of the cityscape and the abstract with a message of its own about consumerism to impart. Elsewhere try your hand at harbour scenes, the sun drenched Mediterranean, beaches, flowers, woods and more. It is a freer way of working that emphasises the fun element while having a good underpinning of all the painting know-how no artist can do without. A most impressive and refreshing book on all levels, one for the keeper shelf. * Myshelf.com * Sept 13 Acrylics are the newest type of paint around, and the most versatile. You can use them like watercolors, or like oils, or like their own selves. If you are like Mr Macey you can even throw out the rulebook and take off on your own artistic adventure with them... Frequent readers of my reviews will know that I do like a bit of originality and a fresh approach to a subject. I also admire people who recycle what they already have and eschew buying the most expensive art materials in the store. They gets my vote every time. The author of this book does all this and more, championing student quality paints and even making his mark with house painting brushes. He also cuts up magazines and uses them in his work, as well as found objects such as sand and shells. If you are wondering where all this might lead and whether it is going to be all abstract art then think again - the work in here are mostly landscapes and seascapes, many of his native Cornwall. This is not a gallery book either, but a hands-on approach to painting and having fun while while it, and is complete with nine projects. All the usual things you expect to find in an art book are here of course - choosing a palette, getting different effects, composing your picture, etc. and also how to use found objects and those magazines. There is a stunning rendition of New York in here made of these that just says it all - a brilliant fusion of the cityscape and the abstract with a message of its own about consumerism to impart. Elsewhere try your hand at harbour scenes; the sun drenched Mediterranean, beaches, flowers, woods and more. It is a freer way of working that emphasizes the fun element while having a good underpinning of all the painting know-how no artist can do without. A most impressive and refreshing book on all levels, one for the keeper shelf. * Myshelf.com * Feb 13 Hi Glyn, I just had to contact you to tell you that I have just bought Acrylics Unleashed and am blown away by it. I am a 71 year old `artist' - I can call myself that as i started painting with acrylics just over a year ago and have sold five pictures - however, I felt frustrated that I was too `tight' and really wanted to feel freer. Your book is the catalyst that I needed. Thank you so much for sharing you knowledge and enthusiasm. I guess you get a lot of emails to this effect but I am starting on one of your projects, `secret beach' and when done I shall go to our nearest beach and gather sand etc and do one of my own. thank you again,best wishes, Sonja. x * Customer * Jan 13 Thank you SO much for producing this amazing book, "Acrylics Unleashed", and generously sharing your talents and know-how with the world. Many many thankyous! Anne Daly, Stourbridge, West Midlands * Customer * Jan 13 As you might guess from the title, this isn't a guide about how to paint in acrylics. Well, it is, but it's really a guide on how to express yourself in paint using the medium of acrylics, if you see what I mean. Glyn is an enthusiastic painter. Imagine you had a new puppy, all soft and lovable and bursting with energy, but with a creative bent. That's Glyn. You can't help but like him, you'll want to take him home straight away and you can. He's not a puppy, he's a bloke and he's written a book. Sorry, I may seem to have got a bit carried away, but I'm trying to give you an idea of the feel of this genuinely exciting book that's just bursting with ideas. There isn't a subject Glyn won't turn his hand to, as long as it excites him, and then his unconventional working methods get free rein. If you like the idea of experimenting, but not of abstraction, this is right up your street. Glyn's subjects are recognisable: mostly landscapes and seascapes, but also buildings, trees and flowers, but painted using spatter and stippling as well as a little collage and multi-media work. Whatever it takes, he'll do it. The best thing about it is that, for someone who seemingly works by inspiration, Glyn is remarkably good at explaining what he does and why he does it. There are demonstrations here and, although they ought to feel stilted, they're actually as fresh and inspiring as the man himself. * Paint * Jan 13 Glyn Macey's approach is happily child-like and he quotes Picasso approvingly: 'I have spent my entire life trying to paint like a child again', but that means he is excited by both the creative process and the medium. This he frequently mixes with anything that comes his way and applies by often unconventional methods. All of this could be a nightmare but in Glyn's skilful hands it opens a wealth of possibilities, which he explains and demonstrates clearly and patiently. With such a unique approach there is always a danger that step-by-step projects will lead to slavish emulation, but the ones here really do give you a chance to put all Glyn's ideas into your own practice. * Artist, The * Jan 13 OK, so this isn't a book about how to paint in acrylics. Oh no, it's a book about how to express yourself using acrylics as a medium. I just wanted to clear that up. To describe Glyn as enthusiastic would be an understatement. He bursts with enthusiasm and that would be annoying if he wasn't so damn good at explaining what he does and how he works. Enthusiasm is often described as "infectious", but here it really does rub off. It's impossible to go for more than a few pages without just wanting to be out there and doing it. There isn't a subject Glyn won't turn his hand to, just as long as it interests him, and here you get landscapes, mountains, buildings, boats and flowers and techniques that use quite a lot of scraping, spattering and even collage. Yes, it does all sound rather random and wild, but Glyn is also a master at reining himself in and at no point do you get the feeling that this is just technique for technique's sake. I've seen books like that and this is definitely not one of them. In fact, if you like the idea of experimenting, but don't want to stray down the abstract route, this is the book for you. This is an intriguing look at what you can do with paint if you let your imagination run (and please note that I didn't say "run riot"). I don't think that every result will be for everyone, but I'm pretty sure you'll find plenty to like and admire. * Artbookreview.net * Dec 12 I have seen other Glyn Macey books but much prefer this for it gives you more guidelines to his methods and painting techniques. Bold, imaginative and colourful, these acrylics are dynamic. Use acrylics like Glyn to create impressive landscapes and add creativity to your work. This book has nine step-by-step projects. In addition Glyn offers advice on composition, adding movement and many techniques including scumbling, glazing and collage. * Karen Platt Yarnsandfabrics.co.uk/crafts * June 13 Hi Glyn, I've just bought your inspirational book Acrylics Unleashed" and it's like a keen gust of Atlantic air! Originally from Scotland, I now live in Germany - very absent coastline! Always wanted to pursue painting, but only now in the last five years been able to fulfill my ambition. The sea and coastline fascinate me and I try and get back to the West Coast of Scotland annually, if not, the remote peninsula of Finistere in Brittany which is just across from you in Cornwall with the same spectacular cliffs and bays. I love acrylics and experimenting with texture etc. having had no formal training, I have just gone ahead and found things out for myself. Many of the techniques I use, I then subsequently found to be recognised technique which made me feel quite chuffed - but I still need to get my approach and method together as to properly develop/consolidate my personal style and technique. Your book is exactly what I've been looking for - dynamic, fresh and energising - exactly the qualities I wish to bring into my work. No doubt you'll be familiar with the Scottish artist "Jolomo" - he seems these days to represent a particular form of Scottish art - a matter of taste. You, Glyn, are leagues ahead, your work encapsulates and captures the very soul of the sea - but being born in Cornwall, I wouldn't expect any less! My easel is standing ready with a fresh canvas... Best of luck for the future, Regards Jill * Customer * I find this book inspiring and one to return to again and again. There is a lot enthusiastically packed in to those 144 pages, there are useful tips and techniques to try first. Then a chapter called Getting Started that explains the importance of going to the location, absorbing the atmosphere, sketching and making colour studies, ah all music to my ears! There are 9 step by step demonstrations to practice the techniques in a painting. The early ones don't involve complicated drawing skills and use a fairly limited palette so should be suitable for most most readers. In Glyn's words 'What I would really love for you to do is to find your own subjects and having fun with the creative process' That's creativity unleashed! * Tessa Spaton *

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