Katie Swatland

Katie Swatland: Alla Prima II Companion: Richard Schmid's Materials, Tools and Techniques Book



A book that completes the expansion of Alla Prima...

Lavishly illustrated with over 200 images by Katie Swatland and Richard Schmid!

• In-depth details on Richard’s materials, tools and techniques—the how and why of his methods

• Full explanations of all painting preparations, with step-by-step images illustrating each process

• Painting demonstrations with sequential images by Katie Swatland and Richard Schmid


A Note From Richard...

Dear Reader,

For painters, a thorough understanding of materials and tools is as fundamental as the ability to draw, because it is not possible to draw well unless you know what is possible with your brushes, how paint will behave, and what is achievable on a variety of surfaces. Confidence comes with this kind of knowledge. My initial intention was to include the technical information on my materials and tools in the expanded edition of Alla Prima II. However, in order to provide a far more detailed account of all my processes, with step-by-step demonstrations and full explanations of the reasons behind my choices, this separate companion volume was essential. Over the past five years, Katie Swatland has documented a vast amount of information from the painting lessons I have shared with her. She has come to me with countless questions, asking for more details and clarity on every possible aspect of painting. Katie recorded the many sessions where we built paint boxes and easels, primed canvases and boards, varnished paintings, photographed them, and then prepared the art for shipping. All of this information is now explained and organized into a beautiful book with clear sequence images and an abundance of painting examples. Complicated topics, such as those involving light and color, are broken down into easily understood ideas. The creation of values and edges are also shown in many of the photographic sequences. This Companion is a comprehensive guide, never before published, of my methods. It not only shows the how, but most importantly explains the why, so when faced with your own choices, you may draw upon the same problem- solving methods to make decisions about what will work best for you and the task at hand. I highly recommend adding this book to your art library. It completes the expansion of Alla Prima and offers a full account of all the technical aspects of my teachings and methods. It is a necessary companion to Alla Prima II.

With Gratitude, Richard Schmid




Quality Surfaces
Surface Customization
Lead Ground
Linen Canvas
Working on Lead Ground
Underlying Tone (Oil Washes)


Pre-Stretching a Canvas
Stretching a Painted Canvas
Use of Keys
Preservation & Cataloging
Shipping Artwork
Archival Photographing 


Choosing a Palette & the Power of the Palette
Glass Palette & Maintenance
Brush Care
Brush Mastery Exercises


Schmid’s Studio 
The Outdoor/Portable Studio 

Step-by-step Painting Demonstrations by Katie Swatland & Richard Schmid!