Colored Pencil Painting Portraits by Alyona Nickelsen

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Colored Pencil Painting Portraits by Alyona Nickelsen is broken into seven chapters describing and exploring the use of colored pencils, alone and with other mediums. The increased quality of colored pencils has improved drastically and the last twenty years have shown tremendous strides in improved performance and the range of abilities of colored pencils. Descriptions of types of mediums clarifies usage and the examples of colored pencil creations are astounding and look realistic; 5 stars for an impressive artist and her instructional book that helps others aspire to her standards! I am planning on purchasing this book for the school library.

Crochet Stories: Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland by Pat Olski

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Received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review.
Thanks to Dover Publications and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review Crochet Stories: Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland by Pat Olski. This book is a feast for crocheters and readers combined. The crocheted characters are introduced through excerpts from Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and right after the story sections, comes the crochet projects’ details. The key of crochet abbreviations is at the beginning of the book and each pattern uses these abbreviations. The detailed instructions give information on finished measurements, materials needed and the gauge of stitches per row and number of rows when complete. The colored photos of the finished products are too cute to not crochet! My favorite photo is of Alice, the dormouse, the Mad Hatter and the tea set – all crocheted pieces. The Queen and King are comically cute. The skill levels for crocheters are easy and intermediate. There are even patterns for a croquet card arch and a flamingo mallet. Adorable and fun! 5 stars!

Every Which Way Crochet Borders by Edie Eckman

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Received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review.
Thanks to NetGalley and Storey Publishing for the opportunity to read and review Every Which Way Crochet Borders: 139 Patterns for Customized Edgings by Edie Eckman! Detailed instructions and close up photos describe the different borders well. Definitely for intermediate and above crocheters! This helpful book even includes the different ways to crochet around fleece or other materials and the tools available – a skip blade rotary cutter to cut holes in the fabric or a sharp ended crochet hook specially designed to poke the holes before crocheting. Easy to follow instructions and a photo accompany each direction and make this book a must for creative crocheters. A huge variety of border patterns with accompanying photos and illustrations of each pattern and complete, thorough directions. The appendix has a stitch key, reading crochet symbols key and a photo index of the crochet patterns contained in this book – 5 stars for a comprehensive instructional text!

Manga Art by Mark Crilley

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Received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review.
Thanks to NetGalley and Ten Speed Press for the opportunity to read and review Manga Art: Inspiration and Techniques from an Expert Illustrator by Mark Crilley! Mr. Crilley shares his story with his readers, encouraging artists everywhere. The beautiful artwork in this book will open up worlds for aspiring artists and I especially like the “your turn” sections that encourage artists to think outside the box and create out of their norm. I will purchase this book for the library where I work because I can see it being beneficial to many students. They will enjoy this book as much as I do- 5 stars for this nonfiction art instructional book!