April 20, 2010

The Luminous Brush: Painting with Egg Tempera



I'm very happy to announce that my instructional book, The Luminous Brush: Painting with Egg Tempera is now available for free online and as a PDF download. I first learned to use egg tempera when I moved to Vermont in 1994 after 3 years of teaching in California; I'd wanted to use the medium for a long time, inspired by Quattrocento Italian panel paintings––which I wrote about in this blog post––and finally had the time to devote to it. After working with tempera for five years, I put together a book proposal because there was no current book on egg tempera technique. My technique––for instance see this post on brushstrokes––and my work has changed over the years, and I would write a different book now, but it is useful for a detailed look at the history and current practice of egg tempera, with lots of step by step illustrations.

The Luminous Brush has been out of print for a couple of years and the rare used copies that show up online are terribly expensive, so I decided to send a copy of the book to Google Books for scanning. The online version of the book is rather washed out and fuzzy, but the PDF download (click on "PDF" on the upper right of the screen) is excellent. It is a large file, so will take a few minutes to download. I recommend viewing it on the latest version of the Adobe Reader, which you can download for free here.

The link to The Luminous Brush online is above at "free online...." and here.
*May 11 Update: The PDF version of the book hasn't been available for a while, but it is now online live!
*March 10 Update: The Luminous Brush is now available as an ebook for $8.

16 comments:

  1. Wonderful news Altoon! Thanks for submitting it to make it available to others.

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  2. I thought your book was great and it continues to be one of my favorite books on painting (glad I bought it back in the day). It's terrific you made it available for free download. Highly recommended!

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  3. That is a very generous move. I'm sure many people will benefit from this. I purchased your book several years ago, and was impressed with it. I find it a weird dichotomy every time something so old (the process of egg tempera) comes in contact with modern day technology.

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  4. Thanks for the nice comments on offering the download of The Luminous Brush. Google Books deserves the credit for their huge project to digitize the world's books. It's wonderful for me to know my book is again available to people who want it...spread the word.

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  5. Thank you for offering your book for download. I was so excited! However, could you please help point me in the direction of the download, I can't seem to find it. I've gone to the google page and didn't see anything about a download there.

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  6. What a wonderful gift to others Altoon. Very impressive and generous of you. I so admire the wonderful sharing of process you do and have learnt mucht and had pause for thought on many occasions visiting this delightful blog.

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  7. Dear Altoon, I lost this book in our house fire of 2004 and sorely missed it. Thank you so much for making it available again online!

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  8. Thanks a lot for the free copy.
    I have been looking to buy this for a while.
    Now I can start painting.

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  9. Thanks a lot for this generous sharing :) <3 I'm glad I found it at a much needed time!

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  10. I have enjoyed and used your book which was well written and concise.
    I was dismayed at it being out of print (I had mentioned it to a fellow artist)
    My shock was to see the price of an online retailer.
    Bravo on your generous spirit!
    Thanks for the book and your work.

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    1. Thank you, Anon; I'm glad my book has been helpful to you. I am happy to be able to provide it free of charge online.

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  11. Thank you for making egg tempera information easy to access and fun to read. It is a great book!

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    1. Thank you, Anon., I'm glad you like the book.

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  12. Thanks for uploading your book. Not many writers are so generous! I downloaded it from your link above and printed it last year. It is of tremendous value to me as there are not many modern day books that provide such detailed descriptions about this painting method. Even after a year I still have it beside my pillow and read it.

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