Nov 13th 2018

New Book by Will Kemp, Artist and Teacher Extraordinaire

by Mary L. Tabor

Mary L. Tabor worked most of her life so that one day she would be able to write full-time. She quit her corporate job when she was 50, put on a backpack and hiking boots to trudge across campus with folks more than half her age. She’s the author of the novel Who by Fire, the memoir (Re)Making Love: a sex after sixty story and the collection of connected short stories The Woman Who Never Cooked. She’s a born and bred liberal who writes lyric essays on the arts for one of the most conservative papers in the country and she hosts a show interviewing authors on Rare Bird Radio. In the picture Mary L.Tabor

 

Still Life Acrylic Project Book, with three simple painting projects, will get anyone who ever wanted to hold a paint brush not only started, but confident. The book is available online for only £12.99 or at the bargain price of £9.99 if you buy it before November 14, 2018.

Still Life Acrylic

 

Here’s the link: https://willkempartschool.com/product/still-life-acrylic-project-e-book/

I am here to sing Will Kemp’s praises and review this new e-book because I have been studying with Will since January 2016, long distance but close in heart—Will lives in Britain and I live in the States.

I had never painted before or even taken an art class—well, there was that one at the Smithsonian Institution’s Campus-on-the-Mall where I came out feeling like a total dunce and decided not to give up but was in a total muddle. This book will get you out of such a muddle and get you started. It is so good that I recommend it for artists who know what they are doing but want to understand acrylics better.

Will Kemp

 

With Will as your teacher, you will never feel stupid or that you shouldn’t try. Very simply, Will Kemp has been a gift in my life. 

First, a bit of his bio: Will Kemp was awarded a Queen Elizabeth Craft Scholarship to study Classical Portraiture in Florence, Italy. He’s designed art curriculums for schools, developed interactive learning resources with the National Gallery, London, and taught students from all different starting points the principles of how drawing and painting work. 

Most of his teaching can be found online—the way I found him—at this YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/user/willkempartschool where he has nearly 170,000 subscribers— and for good reason—and where he actually replies to comments (when does he have time?) and helps his students: He cheers you on, gives you hope and teaches the basics and more, much more. 

Many of his beginning courses are free: I started with his demonstration of a cherry and then his apple. Below is the second painting I ever painted. These are step-by-step YouTube videos with a remarkable mentor and guide. My apple is no masterpiece but it made me believe I could pick up a brush again and that investing in the best paints, a palette knife, two or three good brushes was worth it. Good, rather than student grade in brushes and paints, matters for your sense of success and Will explains why. He’s right. I’ve tried both. 

Here is my second painting done on a canvas board:

Mary's Apple

 

After doing only two of these, I eventually bought every video course Will has offered. All of them are super affordable and well-worth every single cent. I will explain. 

The new e-book is a super inexpensive way to begin because he lists very few inexpensive though good quality tools. He explains basics, such as how to load a palette knife with just the right amount of paint for the effect you want to achieve when mixing your color. You use a disposable tear-off palette that makes clean-up quick and easy, and he uses only seven paints in this book. You can even do your painting on an MDF board, but I’ve found that investing in a small pre-primed canvas gave me better results and allowed me to fix mistakes—yeah, a lot of them—more easily. 

The key gifts of this e-book are his simple, easy to understand explanations of shadows and how light falls, of how to create three-dimensional objects in your still life. He explains color intensity: what that means and how to mix paints that don’t turn into mud, but instead glow before your beginner’s eye. Will provides step-by-step photos that you can print from the e-book for the drawings and the various steps in each of the three main lessons. My prediction, for anyone totally new and making that stab at trying to paint, is that you will feel amazed—and brave. 

One of his key lessons in this e-book is how and why you should use a colored ground, a solid opaque color, to begin. This is what the masters used in their paintings. Will shows you how to get that first layer of paint onto your canvas and how that basic layer will affect everything else you later add. 

He’s also broken the 3-full-color lessons into small sections so that you can do each one in about two hours—even, as he says “if you’ve never painted before.” 

The closing lesson is a gorgeous tea cup with French macaroons that graces the cover. Here is Will’s painting from the cover. And you can do this!

 

Macronies

 

From his basic acrylic color mixing video course, I recently painted his lemons. 

Here is Will’s painting that I used as my guide:

Will Kemps lemons

 

And here is mine:

Marys lemons

 

Although Will’s focus is acrylic painting, he is also an expert oil painter and has a course on oil portraits that I learned much from even though I can’t use oils in my confined living space. 

He doesn’t teach a full course on watercolor paintings, but in his video Urban Sketching Course, he does use watercolors and I learned bunches. I was able to paint a series of some eighteen letters to my granddaughter while she was experiencing her first overnight camp experience for two weeks when she was only eight years old. No, I didn’t use watercolor paper and, yes, I did imitate a gorgeous children’s book This Is a Poem That Heals Fish by Jean-Pierre Siméon, illustrated by Olivier Tallec. In each letter, I repeated the story and painted a small watercolor on my stationary. Here’s one example:

Marys watercolour

 

And now, I’m exploring watercolor painting, on my own, though praying for a Will Kemp course. 

I close here with a small success story that I owe almost 100 percent to Will Kemp. In his video course entitled Still Life Master Class, I got brave enough to triple the size of his demonstration, to measure out and resize the proportions and to learn how to create reflections. It’s no masterpiece, but it hangs in my kitchen and will grace, with Will Kemp’s permission and I give him credit, the cover of the second edition of my collection of short stories The Woman Who Never Cooked, coming soon.

Marys still life

 

If you want to experiment with painting, if you want to enrich your life, if you want to make something you never thought you could, begin with Will Kemp’s brand new e-book Still Life Acrylic Project Book. You won’t regret it.

 


This article is brought to you by the author who owns the copyright to the text.

Should you want to support the author’s creative work you can use the PayPal “Donate” button below.

Your donation is a transaction between you and the author. The proceeds go directly to the author’s PayPal account in full less PayPal’s commission.

Facts & Arts neither receives information about you, nor of your donation, nor does Facts & Arts receive a commission.

Facts & Arts does not pay the author, nor takes paid by the author, for the posting of the author's material on Facts & Arts. Facts & Arts finances its operations by selling advertising space.

 

 

Browse articles by author

More Essays

Jan 16th 2020
EXTRACT: "Between 1940 and 1942 Charlotte Salomon, a young German-Jewish artist, created a sequence of 784 paintings while hiding from the Nazi authorities. She gave the sequence a single title: Leben? oder Theater? (Life? or Theatre?). Viewed in the 21st century, Salomon’s artwork could be considered a precursor to the contemporary graphic novel, creating a complex web of narratives through words and images."
Jan 9th 2020
EXTRACT: "It’s simply not possible to do justice to the value of Iran’s cultural heritage – it’s a rich and noble history that has had a fundamental impact on the world through art, architecture, poetry, in science and technology, medicine, philosophy and engineering. The Iranian people are intensely aware – and rightly proud of – their Persian heritage. The archaeological legacy left by the civilisations of ancient and medieval Iran extend from the Mediterranean Sea to India and ranges across four millennia from the Bronze age (3rd millennium BC) to the glorious age of classical Islam and the magnificent medieval cities of Isfahan and Shiraz that thrived in the 9th-12th centuries AD, and beyond."
Jan 9th 2020
EXTRACT: "Lautrec had a genius for representing people. He would rarely paint any other subject. When he looked at a person who caught his interest, not only their appearance, but seemingly also their personality would magically flow from his hand, fixing a moment of their life, and his, on a piece of cardboard or canvas."
Jan 7th 2020
EXTRACT: "In 2010, Great Britain generated 75% of its electricity from coal and natural gas. But by the end of the decade*, these fossil fuels accounted for just 40%, with coal generation collapsing from the decade’s peak of 41% in 2012 to under 2% in 2019. The near disappearance of coal power – the second most prevalent source in 2010 – underpinned a remarkable transformation of Britain’s electricity generation over the last decade, meaning Britain now has the cleanest electrical supply it has ever had. Second place now belongs to wind power, which supplied almost 21% of the country’s electrical demand in 2019, up from 3% in 2010. As at the start of the decade, natural gas provided the largest share of Britain’s electricity in 2019 at 38%, compared with 47% in 2010."
Jan 5th 2020
EXTRACT: "Owing to these positive developments, many were lulled into thinking that modern advanced economies can run on autopilot. And yet economists knew that market capitalism does not automatically self-correct for adverse distributional trends (both secular and transitional), especially extreme ones. Public policies and government services and investments have a critical role to play. But in many places, these have been either non-existent or insufficient. The result has been a durable pattern of unequal opportunity that is contributing to the polarization of many societies. This deepening divide has a negative spillover effect on politics, governance, and policymaking, and now appears to be hampering our ability to address major issues, including the sustainability challenge."
Jan 2nd 2020
In September 2018, Ian Buruma was forced out as editor of The New York Review of Books, following an outcry over the magazine’s publication of a controversial essay about #MeToo. A year later, in a conversation with Svenska Dagbladet US correspondent Malin Ekman, he reflects on lost assignments, literature, cancel culture, threats to freedom of speech, and the state of liberal democracy.
Dec 31st 2019
EXTRACT: "I have long been troubled by the way so many believing Christians in the West have either been ignorant of or turned their backs on the plight of Palestinians, both Christian and Muslim. Right​-wing Evangelicals, under the sway of heretical theology, are so blinded by their obsession with Israel that they can't see Israel's victims. Other Western Christians simply just don't know or about the people of Palestine. I find this state of affairs to always distressing, but especially so at Christmas time, since the Christmas story we celebrate not only took place in that land, it continues to define the lives of the Palestinians who live in places like Bethlehem and Nazareth. "
Dec 19th 2019
EXTRACT: "Although there have long been farmers and merchants who specialised in growing and selling seeds, it wasn’t until the 20th century that people started talking about seed production as an industrial process. Thanks to changes in farming, science and government regulations, most of the “elite” seed that is bought and sold around the world today is mass produced and mass marketed — by just four transnational corporations."
Dec 14th 2019
EXTRACT: "Dehydration is associated with a higher risk of ill health in older people, from having an infection, a fall or being admitted to hospital. But an appetite for food and drink can diminish as people age, so older people should drink regularly, even when they’re not thirsty. Older women who don’t have to restrict their fluid intake for medical reasons, such as heart or kidney problems, are advised to drink eight glasses a day. For older men, it’s ten glasses."
Dec 12th 2019
EXTRACT: "A decade ago, I wrote The Life You Can Save: Acting Now to End World Poverty. This month, a fully revised Tenth Anniversary edition was published, and is available, free, as an eBook and audiobook. The chapters of the audiobook are read by celebrities, including Paul Simon, Kristen Bell, Stephen Fry, Natalia Vodianova, Shabana Azmi, and Nicholas D’Agosto. Revising the book has led me to reflect on the impact it has had, while the research involved in updating it has made me focus on what has changed over the past ten years"
Nov 27th 2019
EXTRACT: "Jay Willis at GQ reports that Secretary of Energy Rick Perry said on Fox and Friends that Trump is God’s Chosen One. He said he told Trump, “If you’re a believing Christian, you understand God’s plan for the people who rule and judge over us on this planet and our government.” Perry also said that he had written a memo for Trump about how God uses imperfect people, comparing Trump to biblical figures such as Solomon, Saul and David, who were also flawed. This evangelical discourse that a providential God controls political power goes back to old West Semitic Religion"
Nov 7th 2019
Extract: "The PSA test is done using a small amount of blood to detect raised levels of prostate specific antigen (PSA). Yet, despite its relatively low cost and ease of administering, it is not offered for routine screening in many countries, including the UK. This is because a significant proportion of those testing positive have no disease (a false-positive result), slow-growing cancer that doesn’t need treatment, or positive results caused by a relatively benign condition, such as a urinary tract infection. Detecting prostate cancer early is important and saves lives. But many of those identified by the PSA test as having elevated levels of the antigen could potentially undergo painful treatment with significant life-altering side effects, which were unnecessary. Also, up to 15% of men with prostate cancer have normal PSA levels (a false-negative result), meaning that many men would receive unwarranted reassurance from this test. Guidelines in most countries, therefore, note that the possible benefits of testing are outweighed by the potential harms of over-diagnosis and over-treatment, making it unsuitable for screening everyone."
Nov 5th 2019
Extract: "Ken Loach’s film, Sorry We Missed You, tells the harrowing tale of Ricky, Abby and their family’s attempts to get by in a precarious world of low paid jobs and the so-called “gig economy”. But how realistic is it? Can Loach’s film be accused of undue pessimism?"
Nov 3rd 2019
Extract: "Travel to Prague, Kyiv, or Bucharest today and you will find glittering shopping malls filled with imported consumer goods: perfumes from France, fashion from Italy, and wristwatches from Switzerland. At the local Cineplex, urbane young citizens queue for the latest Marvel blockbuster movie. They stare at sleek iPhones, perhaps planning their next holiday to Paris, Goa, or Buenos Aires. The city center hums with cafés and bars catering to foreigners and local elites who buy gourmet groceries at massive hypermarkets. Compared to the scarcity and insularity of the communist past, Central and Eastern Europe today is brimming with new opportunities.......In these same cities, however, pensioners and the poor struggle to afford the most basic amenities. Older citizens choose between heat, medicine, and food. In rural areas, some families have returned to subsistence agriculture."
Nov 3rd 2019
EXTRACTS: "Genetic clustering has existed in all past societies. People have typically been relatively genetically similar to others nearby. But most of this was because of limited mobility."........."But in the 19th and 20th centuries, people started to move about more. Societies opened up geographically, and socially. This new mobility has created a new kind of clustering – what the American author Thomas Friedman called a “great sorting out”.".........".....this is now visible at the genetic level too."
Oct 9th 2019
EXTRACT: "The idea that we are living in an entrepreneurial age, experiencing rapid disruptive technological innovation on a scale amounting to a new “industrial revolution” is a pervasive modern myth. Scholars have written academic papers extolling the coming of the “entrepreneurial economy”. Policymakers and investors have pumped massive amounts of funding into start-up ecosystems and innovation. Business schools, universities and schools have moved entrepreneurship into their core curricula. The only problem is that the West’s golden entrepreneurial and innovation age is behind it. Since the 1980s entrepreneurship, innovation and, more generally, business dynamics, have been steadily declining – particularly so in the US. "
Aug 28th 2019
EXTRACT: ". But today, the impulse to gain attention on social media has produced a discourse of extreme defamation and scorched-earth tactics aimed at destroying one’s opponents. We desperately need a broad-based movement to stand up against this type of political discourse. American history is replete with examples of people who worked together to solve – or at least defuse – serious problems, often against great odds and at significant personal risk. But the gradual demise of fact-based history in schools seems to have deprived many Americans of the common ground and optimism needed to work through challenges in the same way they once did."
Aug 8th 2019
Consider the following facts as you wend your way to the Guggenheim Museum and its uppermost gallery, where you will presently find The Death of Michael Stewart (1983), Basquiat’s gut-punching tribute to a slain artist, and the centerpiece for an exhibition that could hardly be more timely.
Jul 22nd 2019
It’s worth remembering, then, that we are not designed to be consistently happy. Instead, we are designed to survive and reproduce. These are difficult tasks, so we are meant to struggle and strive, seek gratification and safety, fight off threats and avoid pain. The model of competing emotions offered by coexisting pleasure and pain fits our reality much better than the unachievable bliss that the happiness industry is trying to sell us. In fact, pretending that any degree of pain is abnormal or pathological will only foster feelings of inadequacy and frustration. Postulating that there is no such thing as happiness may appear to be a purely negative message, but the silver lining, the consolation, is the knowledge that dissatisfaction is not a personal failure. If you are unhappy at times, this is not a shortcoming that demands urgent repair, as the happiness gurus would have it. Far from it. This fluctuation is, in fact, what makes you human.