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Joe Francis Dowden.


“The Landscape Painter's Essential Handbook…

…for impatient people…”


·    50 stunning main image paintings, over 270 artworks plus Step photography on 13 projects.

·    Hardworking spreads with three innovative and simple presentation styles, delivering a massive amount of information.

·    Dozens of tips, techniques, tricks, concepts, and unique methods with vast numbers of applications.*

*Joe Francis Dowden has pioneered some amazing techniques. Beach shingle, water, foliage, and others
are only to be found in his books and get the best ever
exposure in this one. Other unique techniques include
“water feathering”, sparkle, and blossom.

Why will it sell?

“The Landscape Painter's Essential Handbook punches beyond its
weight because of its presentation approach”

The key is the spread design. These spreads are part of an innovative approach to layout.

Sample pages from the book showing spread design



These are the three presentation style types.    
  1. Step photography.
    Thirteen representative projects, from all sections are photographed at every stage, and covered step by step in detail.
    Example: Pages 72 – 73. Stream in full flow.

  1. Artworks.
    Many techniques for rendering identical and similar material are shown, along with alternative methods.
    Example: Pages 30 – 31. Moorland

  1. Step artworks.
    These give maximum explanation of detail unique to the project covered, and  typically cover a similar project, or a crop of the main project.

    Example: Pages 36 – 37. Trees by a river. 


The book is well designed, functional and easy to use.



  • Attention grabbing and beautiful, so the casual browser will become the impulse buyer.
  • Unique hardworking spreads, so it delivers information easily.
  • Packed with new techniques for realism, so many will want to try them for the first time.
  • Simple projects, as well as more sophisticated ones, for a wide range of skill levels. 
  • Large image and technique count, and much information conveyed, so it is good value.
  • Written by a popular author with a following both in his UK homeland and internationally.



Just a few of many methods for painting convincingly in watercolour.


  • Rough brush masking is applied to blossom, bluebells and rough water amongst others.

  • Colour shaper masking renders swans, a lighthouse, people, boats etc.

  • Hog hair brush masking gives sparkles and foam on sea, shining and glinting water.

  • Toothbrush masking renders perfect shingle and wild flowers in a meadow.

  • Card masking produces vivid lightning.

  • Wet spatter into wet spatter produces realistic foliage effects.

  • Water feathering produces the complex tracery of a woodland canopy – easily.

  • Wax resist creates flowers and rock texture.


The Landscape Painter's Essential Handbook sets out to appeal to the biggest
 customer base of all…
                                                       …the impatient.


Who is the author?

Joe Francis Dowden is a successful writer with worldwide publication of his books.

He has illustrated and written many magazine articles. Born 1958, he has painted and drawn all his life both in situ and in a studio. He came into the art publishing world in 1998 with an article in Artists & Illustrators Magazine. This article made an immediate impact and he was commissioned to write his first book – “Watercolour, Two Books in One”, which appeared in 2000 and is now published in many languages.

He also has numerous magazine covers to his name, along with articles and illustrations in part works, encyclopaedias and many art books. His DVD’s are widely regarded as inspirational. He is a skilled presenter and he has featured on cable television. His titles have been published throughout the western world including the US/Canada, Britain, Europe, and Australia/New Zealand. His books have also been published in Russia, the Far East and elsewhere.

He makes his primary livelihood as a landscape painter selling his paintings, and it is the quality of his work which has driven his success in publishing. He has a growing worldwide following among people who buy practical art books. 

He runs courses in the UK and overseas but limits this activity in favour of his occupation of painting. He has exhibited at such venues as the Mall galleries in various exhibitions – The Royal Society of Painters in Watercolour, The Royal Society of Marine Artists, The Singer Freidlander / Sunday Times Competition and others. All his books have been published since the year 2000 and remain in print.  

“The Essential Landscape Painter's Handbook” is his sixth book.


The Landscape Painter's Essential Handbook
Learn to Paint 50 Popular Landscapes in Watercolour

AUTHOR: Joe Francis Dowden
LIST PRICE: £18.99
FORMAT: Hardback (pp: 128)
ISBN: 0-7153-2500-0
ISBN-13: 9780715325001
PUB. DATE: 28 Sep 2007


This is a unique artist's reference offering easy-to-follow, ingenious ideas and techniques for painting 50 popular landscapes in watercolour. The 50 landscapes range from a gentle flower-filled meadow and hazy summer mountains to a dramatic cliff scene and rippling stream in sunshine. Each landscape is explored within a hardworking spread through exercises, step-by-step sequences and easy-to-follow instructions; master the principle and technique, and finish with the watercolour painting exercise. The comprehensive introductory section covering basic materials, techniques and colours makes this an indispensable reference for all artists.

Introduction/How to use this book
- SECTION 1: The Basics
- Materials
- Formats and Tone
- Perspective
- Composition
- Washes
- Colour
- SECTION 2: 50 Landscapes
- 1. The Land
- 2. Trees
- 3. Skies
- 4. Mountains
- 5. Inland Water
- 6. The Sea
- 7. Roads, Bridges and Boundaries
- Index.

Subject Area/s:
Art techniques & materials
Nature in art, landscapes, waterscapes, seascapes & weather.  


Authors Statement

“I am an innovative painter with a mainstream following”

“This massive project, writing and illustrating “The Landscape Painter's Essential Handbook” gave me enormous scope for conveying information because the concept was flexible. It gave me freedom to deliver information without constraint. I set out from the start to produce the highest quality paintings - work which would stand up in my professional world as an artist – people learning to paint deserve no less. The projects explore construction through exercises, step-by-step sequences or by demonstrating concepts and techniques – always with easy-to-follow instructions. I incorporated a powerful cross reference tool which allows artists easy access to the optimum amount of information required.

“I set out to answer the hypothetical queries of students, to solve the puzzles. Experience tells me when something is not going to be understood, or which of many potential misunderstandings may occur, perhaps even what the next question is going to be. In this way, the writing navigates around uncertainty and misunderstanding. It is one thing to know how to paint, another to know how to convey this knowledge accurately in a way people can relate to.”   

“I am an innovative painter with a mainstream following. This book provides a service to all artists. It is the book I wanted when I set out as a painter. I hope it will repay the cover price many times over”     

Joe Francis Dowden. June 2007