Sunday, April 18, 2010

Mixing Exercise 2

Exercise 2 - Mid-intensity violets with orange-red and violet-blue. Cadmium scarlet and French Ultramarine.

Well, I don't see much improvement with these violets, maybe a little with the lighter washes. I'm working a new chart layout that works well with the scanner. Perhaps I could have got in a few more columns. Where I'm having difficulty is detecting the nuances in color while mixing the pure pigments. As the tones lighten out, I see the differences so much more.

So for me, it's not only an exercise in learning about pigment mixes but also the mechanics of mixing. Like how much water to include in the most saturated mix. How to gradually fade. How to mix subtle color differences. It's all practice for me.


  1. I have always thought that color mixing is an art unto itself. I work with a fairly limited palette and can still surprise myself with a shade/hue of color that will come from my chosen paints. Whenever I start a painting I always set out my entire color range but I find that I unconsciously wind up using a very few colors- usually only one or two triads at most in any one given work. It really helps unify the entire piece, too.

  2. It's so amazing. Only two pigments and so many colors! I still find it difficult to establish the next initial mix when the pigments are dark. It seems that sometimes the subtleties don't show until the mix is diluted a bit.

    I'd read a good deal about just working with primaries. Same for the warm versus cool primaries. But now, it really seems to be clicking for me and I think it comes from the subtraction theory as well as the hands on. Very cool stuff... :-)