swintons collection

Top 10 Art Books (2014) Every Artist Should Own

Know Stuff. Paint Better.

Top 10 Art Books (2014) Every Artist Should Own

Knowledge precedes execution: the more you study prior to painting, the better your actual painting will be. So with the arrival of a new year, I have a renewed vision to reread all the best art books in my collection. Here is my list of the top ten art books every artist should own.

Express yourself and be inspired with the help of these wonderful books, tips, & tutorials. From the beginning artist looking for a comprehensive introduction to the more experienced painter looking for a challenge, everyone can find a valuable lesson designed to help you create a brand new piece or add new depth to your technique. Here’s to your creativity!

best art book 2014 swintons 11 

1. Carlson's Guide to Landscape Painting by John F. Carlson
All time best landscape book. Written for oils but relevant for artists working in any medium. $19.99

 best art book 2014 swintons 10

2. Alla Prima II Everything I Know About Painting - and More by Richard Schmid
Quintessential art book. Seeing is believing. Revised with new paintings to drool over. It’s a few dollars but the information is top drawer! $129

best art book 2014 swintons 09   

3. Hawthorne on Painting by Charles W. Hawthorne
The only book I’ve ever seen that teaches you about every aspect of painting without a single picture and it works so well. $12.99

 best art book 2014 swintons 08  

4. The Painter's Process by William F. Reese
Great insights into thinking and painting like a true professional. This book is out-of-print but we have a few copies left. $69

 best art book 2014 swintons 07  

5. How to Sell Art by Jason Horejs
Book one of the two book series on how to be professional and sell your art. This is the book a world renowned gallery owner uses to teach his staff how to sell art. $24.95

 best art book 2014 swintons 06  

6. Starving to Successful by Jason Horejs
Book two of how to think, act and work like a professional artist. Get the attitude and get the dream. $24.95

 best art book 2014 swintons 05  

7. Composition of Outdoor Painting by Edgar Payne
Funny thing is that this book doesn’t contain as much about composition as it implies but it’s loaded with knowledge gems. This book is expensive but worth every quarter.

 best art book 2014 swintons 04  

8. Steal Like An Artist by Austin Kleon
New to the list - this is a great book of insights on how to really create your own world. Austin Kleon hits the nail on the head with this masterpiece. (I stole this book from Erica Neumann. Thanks!)

 best art book 2014 swintons 03  

9. Landscape Painting - Inside & Out by Kevin Macpherson
Macpherson’s second book (The first book - Fill Your Oil Paintings with Light & Color made it on the list three years running). This book also has something for everyone, not just the landscape painter.

 best art book 2014 swintons 02  

10. The Art Spirit by Robert Henri
Sexy book on how to see and understand the art you are creating. One word… Outstanding!

 best art book 2014 swintons 01  

Bonus: Sergei Bongart by Mary N. Balcomb 
The most stunning visual feast in a book ever. Out-of-print but if you are lucky enough to find one, buy it along with some Krazy Glue to paste your eyes back into your head after they will pop out when you see these paintings.

Contact Us






Monday 9am - 9pm
Tuesday 9am - 9pm
Wednesday 9am - 9pm
Thursday 9am - 9pm
Friday 9am - 8pm
Saturday 10am - 5pm
Sunday 11am-4pm


7160 Fisher Street S.E.

Calgary, Alberta, Canada
T2H 0W5

Map to Swinton's



  • Monthly Sales
  • Painting Tips & Secrets
  • Art Classes & Workshops
  • Gibberish

We hate spam!

Copyright © 2011 Swinton's Art Supply & Instruction. All Rights Reserved.