Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Dipping into OIls

Making color charts with oils; getting used to my palette, making brush strokes.  I am using the limited palette recommended by Kevin Macpherson in his book Fill Your Oil Paintings With Light & Color:  alizarin crimson, cadmium yellow light, ultramarine blue, and white.  Here are my color charts:  the first one is the pure spectrum hues across the top, with tints of each hue below it in its column (as you can see, I accidentally transposed Yellow-Orange and Red-Orange).


The second chart, below, is a mish-mosh of grays.  I grayed down each color by adding its complement. It was hard to keep it in any sort of order with only 3 hues, so I just practiced adding different amounts of each primary to a puddle of "mud" (all 3 colors mixed together) to push the gray toward a certain hue.  




I found an article on the web that is very helpful:  http://guidetooilpainting.com/index.html.  It is called Bill Martin's Guide to Oil Painting and it is both concise and comprehensive.  He assumes you're a newbie and he tells you the nitty gritty.  I would have wasted a lot of paint already without his tip about tin foil packets.

I like the feel of oils:  they are so creamy and go on the canvas like butter.  I have discovered that you use a LOT of white --- which is good, since white is less expensive than the colors.   I have also discovered that it takes longer to get ready to paint, and a LOT longer to clean up than watercolors.  I have pretty well got my system organized now though.  

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