For painters and students, I have found the following to be helpful.
Most of the books I recommend are out of print but book searches
such as Advanced
Book Exchange can
be helpful. I've also spent many a pleasant hour scouring
everything from garage sales to used bookstores, sometimes with very
Painter in Oil, by Daniel Parkhurst
printed in 1898, this book is a treasure to me as a window into the
thinking and methods of a generation of painters I greatly
admire. Some of the technical advice, especially on pigments, is
out of date, but the book contains much that is helpful for painters.
It is readable online at www.artrenewal.org
The Practice of Oil Painting and Drawing
, by Solomon J. Solomon
Also out of print, but of undeniable value to any serious painter.
Composition of Outdoor Painting, by Edgar
Available in reprint. Any time a book on painting is authored by
a capable painter, it’s worth a look. This book is a great
resource on one of the least understood aspects of painting today.
Frederick J. Waugh, American Marine
Painter, by George
Rare. Especially interesting for painters of the sea.
Pietro Annigoni, an Artist’s Life, as
told to Robert Wraight
A great painter of the 20th century, I became familiar with Annigoni
through my teachers, who had visited Florence and met him.
The Drawings of Rembrandt. Volumes I and II, Dover
An inexpensive tour into the mind of a genius, copies of these books
are possibly still lying around, overlooked, in a used bookstore
The Practice & Science of Drawing,by Harold
The Artist’s Handbook of Materials and
Techniques, by Ralph Mayer
I refer to this whenever I run into questions about materials and the like.
It’s very dependable, and is important to have access to.