Saturday, June 1, 2013

Kassan, Schmid, Gerhartz, and Zorn . . .

Now that we are nearly to the halfway mark of 2013, I have been thinking about the many great items scheduled for release this year, and which should be coming out in the next few months.


The first of these items that I have been looking forward to is David Kassan's new painting DVD, Painting a Life.  It is a companion piece to his earlier instructional DVD, Drawing Closer to Life, which debuted a few years ago.  Drawing Closer to Life has been highly praised by viewers throughout the world, and Painting a Life promises to be just as popular.  I happened to be on the DVD's website a minute after it went live, and though Kassan was still in the process of tweaking the site at that point, there were already orders coming in.

Painting a Life is six hours long, and follows Kassan throughout his process of creating one of his meticulous portraits in oil paint, from pencil sketch to the final brushstroke.  Included in his progression are discussions about his materials, his studio setup including advice on lighting, how he prepares a panel, and a talk about oil paints and color with Gail Spiegel, one of the founders of Vasari Classic Artists' Oil Colors.  And as a bonus, Kassan, who likes to infuse all of his teaching with comedy, has included a blooper reel at the end of the disc.

As of now, supply is limited to only 250 copies.  Randomly inserted into five of those first 250 sales will be a GOLDEN TICKET which will entitle the holder to a prize package yet to be determined.  These packages are likely to include products from the film's sponsors, and there is also a rumor that one lucky winner might receive an original alla prima painting by Kassan. Kassan has kept the initial supply low to give participants a better chance to win (1 in 50).

The price is $129.95, with free shipping within the United States ($15 global shipping).  It was shot in High Definition Widescreen, and was formatted for Region 0 (universal).  These are pre-sales only;  the actual shipping date is not expected to take place until this winter.

You can place your orders at


Another item to which I am looking forward to is the release of Richard Schmid's book, Alla Prima II.  Although his earlier book, Alla Prima is one of the best instructional books of the 20th century, Schmid, it appears, felt he could make it even better.  From what I have read online, Alla Prima II appears to be a revised edition of his earlier book, which was originally published 15 years ago.  Alla Prima II will include new written content as well as expanded explanations of the lessons printed in the earlier version. It will feature 262 color plates personally edited by Schmid, and, at an expected 300 pages, it should be NEARLY TWICE THE LENGTH OF THE ORIGINAL BOOK. Alla Prima II is scheduled for release this September.

Please check the West Wind Fine Art website frequently for updates on the book.


I have also been looking forward to the release of Daniel Gerhartz's new DVD The Beginning of Autumn.  An earlier DVD of his, Her Mother's Locket, was one of the first painting DVDs I ever purchased, and I cannot wait to add this one to my collection.  I am uncertain when it will be released;  I think it was held up in post-production, but I have my hopes it will be available soon.  For more information, and to keep apprised of the DVD's eventual release, please visit Gerhartz's website, or subscribe to his blog.


I am also anticipating the release of the book Anders Zorn: Sweden's Master Painter.  It is due for release October 29, 2013, and is currently available for pre-order at  The 224 page hardcover is designed to accompany a major retrospective of Zorn's work, to which I am also looking forward.  That show will take place at the Legion of Honor in San Francisco this November.


And one last thing (of the many) which I am looking forward to, is Kara Ross' catalogue raisonnĂ© on the British artist Edmund Blair Leighton (1852-1922).  I have no idea how much Ms. Ross has completed on this monumental project, and I highly doubt it will be ready to go to print before the end of this year, but I can still dream.  Blair Leighton is one of the artists I greatly admire, and I will be purchasing the book as soon as it does come out.

1 comment:

nean12350 said...

I don't follow many sites but this one is invaluable for information and especially inspiration. thank you, Jeanean