Creative Gouache – A Step-by-Step Guide to Exploring Opaque Watercolor by Ruth Wilshaw Books in Review
by Adrienne Petterson © 2022


Creative Gouache – A Step-by-Step Guide to Exploring Opaque Watercolor
by Ruth Wilshaw
ISBN 978-63159-037-8   eISBN 978-1-63159-938-5
Published 2021 - 144 pages (eBook 79,815kb) - $22.99 (eBook Price unknown)

I’m slow getting on the gouache train but better late than never.  I loved this book because it’s so informative and Ruth Wilshaw’s happy approach is so encouraging.  I had no idea gouache was so like watercolor but has so many other uses and qualities.  She covers the Basic Techniques to get us going and then we’re off and running actually painting on a variety of surfaces and getting used to how this medium reacts.  The big difference between gouache and watercolor is that the former is opaque so you can do a lot with it, including reactivating it!  I love how Ms. Wilshaw’s book is illustrated and you can’t really mess up because the details are all there!  Whether it’s layering you want to do or straightforward painting, or more, you’ll find it on these pages.  Tips and practice ideas are useful to the gouache novice and I plan to try and find the discipline to do these.  Blending looks pretty interesting too, and you can do much the same as with watercolor in that you can paint on dry paper or wet, or wet-on-wet, and you can thin the paint out as much or as little as needed.  Her leaves look so lovely to try and I enjoy painting flowers and leaves (in a totally abstract fashion!) and the lessons look promising.  I really love the instructions on how to paint silhouette landscapes as you can use them as greeting cards or as a larger painting.  There is also a section on lettering which looks interesting and you can truly branch out and expand your abilities here.  And, gouache works well with mixed media projects!!  There are plenty of templates at the back of the book to help you get started.  I can’t draw for nothing so these will certainly come in handy.

book cover


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