Painting and Understanding Abstract Art is a practical book on how to paint abstracts but it also explains how to approach and understand abstract art. It moves the teaching of art from a doing level of painting a certain subject in a particular medium to a thinking level of 'what am I doing when I paint?' and 'what am I trying to say in this painting?' Using practical exercises with explanatory text, John Lowry develops the thinking and doing processes together and leads the reader to a greater understanding and appreciation of this most exciting art genre. Gives advice on moving from figurative painting towards abstraction, and explains the tools to abstraction - simplifying and exaggerating; eliminating curves and straights; changing colours, lines and items ; emphasising positive and negative shapes; and using contrast. Includes practical exercises to help develop your own style and understand the techniques of the masters, and offers an overview of the lives and times of artists involved in the stage-by-stage evolution from realism to abstraction. Aimed at beginners and the more experienced, and illustrated with 229 colour illustrations.