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October 28, 2008
WATERCOLOR PAINTING JUST GOT EASIER FOR YOU
NO MORE TIME WASTING WITH TRIAL AND ERROR
SUPRISE YOUR CLOSE ONE'S WHEN THEY SEE YOUR PAINTINGS
IF YOU THINK YOU CAN PAINT OR IF YOU THINK YOU CANNOT PAINT YOU ARE RIGHT.
YOU CAN LEARN TO PAINT BEAUTIFUL WATERCOLORS.
REPORT - TWELVE
Last week we discussed some popular color schemes.
NAMELY:- Primary Color Schemes
Secondary Color Schemes
We now have Tertiary Color Schemes these can be composed of two sets. One set Yellow/Green, Red/Orange and Blue/Violet
The other set will be composed of Yellow/Orange, Red/Violet and Blue/Green.
Just as you would with any of the other schemes one color must be dominate. Use the other two for contrast or mix them to mute.
Lets take the last set, Yellow/Orange - Red/Violet and Blue/Green. Choose Blue/Green to dominate. Yellow/Orange, Red/Violet, Bit players (taking on secondary roles).
So with Blue/Green we know it will be predominately a cool painting. Red/Violet would work in relief from the Green, and possibly, some good contrast.
Yellow/Orange will add warm accents and maybe some interesting excitement.
Now we come to analogous color schemes.
This is a no-brainer, it will always be harmonious.
WHY? because they are neighbors, adjacent to each other on the color wheel.
They are beautiful through subtle gradation from one color to the next.
Image them as a family, so start with the "head of the family", one color to dominate, now choose one or even two colors on ether side of the "head".
EXAMPLE:- Yellow(head), Yellow/Green, Green , Blue/Green.
TEST:- Violet is now "Head" of our five color family. Name the other four colors.
Here is an exercise to try, it will not help a whole lot if you just read this stuff, without digging in and trying once in a while.
Remember you can read book after book on how to ride a bicycle, you will never ride until you get on one.
Select five colors (all in same family) from the warm side of the color circle.
Mingle the colors into a square, suggesting a bright mood.
Now try the cool side of color circle this will project a cool serene feeling.
As youwill see analogous colors work beautifully together. Make a note of colors used into your color journal.
As close relative, analogous colors automatically create a united front and color "Harmony is made easy.
Sorry about the colours Type not showing up. But you should get the idea
STUCK ON A NAME
Maybe you too have always dreamed of being an Artist. Deep down in your memory bank you can re-call talking about your great Grandmother being a person of skill in the Art World.
Maybe you could.
In a fleeting moment you place barriers up. lack of knowledge, don't have the time, also you don't know what supplies are needed. So on ,and so on.
The writer had the same positive and negative thoughts as you. So, I decided to sign up at the local Art Gallery for weekly lessons. (Quite a while ago).
Normally, "don't have the time" is reserved for when you have attempted painting for a short frustrating, hair pulling few weeks. So you justify quitting with I just don't have the time to paint. "SOUND FAMILIAR"?
I've been there, heard that, done that.
Could not wait to buy supplies.
Would I not feel like an artist armed with paint and brushes? So I rushed over to the local Art Store, tubes of color everywhere. Blue, Red and Green were obvious choices for a future landscape painting.
Right there, it seems that this tube had moved to the front for me SKY BLUE in bold letters on the tube.
Sunsets, yes indeed, then SUNSET RED was quickly dropped into my basket. Can you see the beautiful sunsets that will be on my paper, three days from now. Trees and all types of vegetation will all be dancing across the paper. Grab that tube of SPRING GREEN, quick.
Could not wait for those three days before class started.
Class day finally arrived, instructor glared at my "well chosen colors", asking one question, slamming a dagger right into my heart, "why SKY BLUE"?. "why SUNSET RED,...... lost confidence in this instructor very fast, what an idiot he must be, skies need SKY BLUE paint Sunsets well.....
Looking back over the years this scenario has been played out many times by my students. Buying paint because of fancy names,not caring about the contents. BIG MISTAKE.
Recent years ingredients in grocery items, product labels are being read. Studying the ingredients in cans, boxes and such.
Some groups, some organizations, some Artists, I know not who, started putting pressure on paint manufacturers to open their dark secrets.
Which they felt was none of our business. The battle cry was on, "WHAT'S IN TUBE', DID THEY RESPOND? yes, they responded, sadly very reluctantly, but not very straight forward.
Conformity is lacking in labeling paint tubes, manufacturers using codes,. symbols of their choosing the alphabet, numerals, stars, dots, squares, triangles, and to top it all off confusing names on the tune of paint.
Lets look at lightfast - Lightfast indicates how long before paint fades.
Five major paint manufacturers
Japan #1 - Italy #2 - Germany #3 - England #4 - USA #5
Two stars for manufacturer #1 means permanent.
Two stars for manufacturer #2 means highest lighfast.
Two stars for #3 means limited lightfast.
#4 uses the alphabet.
#5 uses numerals.
Very confusing, but it's going to get worse.
If they do put the contents of the pigment on the tube it will be as follows: - PR = Pigment Red, PB = Pigment Blue etc, followed by a number which will be the chemical description.
Learn to buy paint by the number on the tube, not by manufacturers given name (remember SKY BLUE). They make up any name they want to dream up, and place it on the tube
This is getting to be fun. Please don't laugh.
Daniel Smith might employ poetical writers this is what they wrote in their catalog a short time back describing their "Prima Tec (r) - Pure authentic mineral pigment paints made from regional crushed rocks. Paint made of crushed mining scraps.
This was the name given to this product "Natural Sleeping Beauty Turquoise Genuine". This is how they described this tube of paint in their catalog
"Many cultures thought an amulet (of turquoise) worn on a horse's bridle protected the horse and rider from a fall. The legends are many.
The magic is yours to own........The mystic beauty of turquoise has been felt by every culture and its use has crossed national and cultural boundaries. Paint with Daniel Smith, Natural Sleeping Beauty Turquoise Genuine and catch a piece of its rich and colorful history for yourself. Prepare to be captivated". It never did say if you were to use an easel while you were on the horse.
You might ask yourself, why should I do this. Look for the pigment name called "color index name", PB - PR etc. Well here is a good example.
PHTHALO BLUE RED
PHTHALO BLUE RS
PHTHALO BLUE GREEN
PRIMARY BLUE CYAN
All these twelve are PB - 15. Same pigment different name. The chemical description is all the same. Phthalocyanine Blue.
I would like to have a dollar bill for every time students have had two or more tubes, same color, different name. They purchased multi-tubes, could have been one. It gets worse.
One large catalogue supplier has PV-19 that's pigment Violet-19 in 6 tubes, different name of course and PV-19 in 6 more tubes combined with another color.
That brings up a good point to remember, buy tubes with single pigment code on the tube, no code on the tube indicates manufacturer is not proud of the content, never buy this
Most of you know, or should know, mixing primary colors Red, Blue & Yellow, you are going to get a blackish mud looking mess.
That being said here comes a major manufacturer that has twenty four, yes (24) colors that have three different pigments in each and every single tube. Mix two tubes together, now you have 6 colors, instantaneous mud.
Are you ready for some more details.
This may make some of you sad, your favorite color is about to reveal it's dark dirty secret. It has failed in hundreds of tests, failed in American Standard Testing Materials Test (ASMT). It fades right out of your painting. PR-83 is it's pigment code. You know it as Alizarin Crimson (wave goodbye).
One paint supplier satisfies the uninformed and the informed Artist by making two Alizarin Crimson's. PR-83 the fader (uninformed Artist) Permanent Alizarin Crimson. PR-206, (the good guy) - for informed Artists. Clever idea or....... Some suppliers have already dropped PR-83 from their line of colors. One prints the word "fugitive"in (small print) on their label.
The goal here is avoiding mud, dull colors, and produce bright vibrant colors. To produce more readers of tubes in the paint store.
Very shortly after years in writing, talking to paint manufacturers, I am about to launch my computerized Color Wheel giving you access to hundreds of colors. The properties of each, who the color matches up with, who to avoid.
Lightfastness, why the word permanent is to be looked at very carefully. Who makes what, does it lift and many, many more ideas.
It will completely make that plastic color wheel (what a waste of money those things are), a thing of the past.
This is what I hear in the classroom, but, Jim I have always used this brand, this color.
We Artist's tend to stick to what we know, or rely on recommendations from others. Maybe an art book 10+ years old.
Unforturately, even good advice and good habits don't last.
If you think Paint Manufacturers, Chemical Manufacturers (these are the one's that make the powder for paint makers) don't make changes in their product. HELLO! cutting costs, business reasons,supply problems, you my friend are sadly mistaken.
The changes sometimes are for the better, sometimes for the worst.
Remember Coke Cola's change a few years back to "Classic Coke" or New Coke what a bust that was.
In reality what "you always used" has changed of for better or worst.
There are many beautiful pigments and paint combinations out there you probably6 have not yet discovered...... you just need to know where and how to find them.
I will help you in the coming weeks, to paint beautiful watercolors, without all the trial and error.
Do this, pick up any instructional Art Books or Magazine - see how many still recommend Alizarin Crimson (PR-83) or Aureolin (PY-40) and Opera (PR122& BV-10).
All bad, subject to fading.
Winsor and Newton do come right out and tell you Opera great color for illustration purposes only. Art Work ????
On Aureolin they state it may fade in thin washes. Over all they tend to be more up front ,then any other manufacturer.
See you next week.
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