Just a quick painting in honour of the Victoria Plum. What a fruit? The crop this year is so great the tree is in jeopardy. God forbid! However, myself, the wasps and the birds are doing our best to relieve the situation.
Alla prima again. But it was 40 minutes before I could eat the models. Anyway, just a few interesting points about this painting. The copper kettle has a hard brittle surface, not like polished silver, more of a ‘brushed metal’ effect. The skin of the plums is like satin – no highlight. Both copper and plums are similar colour but texture is contrasting. The satin cloth is similar in texture to the plums but colourless. There is also the texture of the old wooden table top.
On a different matter there is another important painting subject which is rarely discussed these days – chroma. In practical terms its the ‘clarity’ of colours in a painting. The paints used by the artist are not like the colours used, for example, in photoshop. Mixing colours in a computer is a mathematical process. The resultant colour does not loose its intensity. Artists’ pigments when mixed, loose some of their intensity. A good example is mixing a blue and yellow to produce green. This green will look more natural in a landscape painting as opposed to the intense green straight from the tube. The more pigments in the mix the more towards mud the colour goes. To complicate the matter further, some pigments don’t mix well and ‘kill’ each other. The solution is simple. Keep the number of different pigments at an absolute minimum. My basic 3 are, Burnt Sienna (red), Yellow Ochre (yellow) and Cobalt Blue (blue). No matter what combination of the 3 are used the resultant mixes are always clean and natural for landscape. They mix well together. If the resultant colour mixes need to be pushed in a different direction a little pure colour can be added from a different pigment. An example, like the blue and yellow above, is the green produced by mixing Yellow Ochre and Cobalt Blue. If its a little dull (this green tends to be), adding small amounts of Viridian (a green bottle colour) makes a more ‘green’ green.
The most valuable result of this approach is being able to remember the resultant combinations because the number of different pigments is small. The more you paint the more you learn. You will remember that horrid green (Yellow Ochre and Cobalt Blue plus Pigment X) and will not use it again.
The next post will have the time lapse video of the above and more about the painting itself.
Oh, I can’t thank you enough for this explanation about pigments and especially about green!!! I can’t wait to get the right colors to start with and try again, I’ve been hating my greens but not knowing what I was doing wrong! Thank you once again!
Thank you for ‘liking’ An Angel In My Bath … Your site is beautiful … Filling me with inspiration
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Lovely. Thank-you for visiting my blog.
I appreciate the good info on mixing clean colors. Your videos are very interesting. Thank you for sharing your knowledge!
Lovely work and thanks for the technical details 🙂
Thank you for liking my blog. This is new for me and I will enjoy visiting all these amazing sites!
Thank you…what a beautiful painting and fabulous explanation of color! I can’t wait to see more! I’d like to share my thoughts on green with you: http://raxacollective.wordpress.com/2011/09/23/biodeverde/
Thanks for liking my post “Interpreting a Photo”. I’ve tried to subscribe to your blog a couple of times but it doesn’t seem to show up under my subscriptions or come into my email. i’m kind of a “newbie” so maybe I’m doing something wrong.
Kathleen thank you for ‘trying to subscribe’. I’m also a ‘newbie’ so I don’t understand what’s going on. However, I will check it out and get back to you. Thanks again.
wonderful colours in this work
Thank you Michael.
Wow…your work is incredible!
Very nice work! Your explanations are instructional as well. Yotaki, beautywalk
Alyssa’s right. Green can really be a headache. The only comfort is that it was for everybody from the Old Masters onward. Good post!
Excellent blog! It is an education.
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Thanks for liking my blog. I suspect you are a retired teacher, considering your fab explanation of colour mixing!
Thank you, and I hope you got some value from the blog. I’m not a teacher, nor am I retired (still in my prime 🙂 ), but I’m painting in oils for 40 years. Being self taught I’ve worked it out from scratch and am delighted to share my experiences with interested artists, especially beginners. I believe the process of painting is more important that the finished product – Yipee! for YouTube.
Thank you for the tips! Starting to paint again after 20 years, struggling with chroma. Going to reduce my palette.
Thanks for the visit, good luck with painting.
Getting the right color in painting is probably the most frustrating part about it…as a writer it is comparable to finding the right words.
I have often experienced the muddying when too many colors are blended…and am grateful for your tips.
The painting in this post is exquisite, simple and pure but with textures and shadowing that convince the eye they are for touching and tasting. (The copper kettle is especially beautiful and true)
Also, thank you so much for visiting my blog and liking my post ‘Fruit-fall-ness’.
I look forward to catching up and visiting on your site too.
Wonderful painting and I love your blog! Thank you for visiting my blog!!!
Thank you. Great paintings/sculptures. Full of colour.
Niiiice. Classic too. And you said it was quick?
Thank you for the ‘niiiice’ comment. 😉
Great post. You definitely know what you’re talking about PictureS.
In trying to keep the oil colors vibrant (or high chroma, to refer to your article), like in more contemporary applications, I find the necessity to use tube greens and mix them with blue to cool and darken them, yellow to warm them, red to reduce their chroma, etc. I usually go Sap Green; it seems neutral and a Permanent Green Hue or something like that, when I need an opaque green; Sap Green can be very transparent like Viridian.
The effects of atmosphere on distant colours in landscape paintings requires reduced chroma. I can see why you need vibrant colours for vibrant paintings. Great work.
thanks for visiting my blog. your observations on colour mixing for natural landscape colours are very interesting and useful. You write in a clear informative style. Good blog!
Thanks for coming by my blog. This painting is wonderful! I can’t image doing it in 40 minutes!
Thanks for liking my post about “Fraudulent Art Painting” – I’m happy to know that your blog is here so that I can get info from someone who an actual artist – thanks!
You’re absolutely right about landscape colours. Mixing naturally occurring colours do have the right tone you can’t always get from pure colours. Really enjoyed reading this and learned something too. Thanks.
Hi. I encounter metallics so often in nature. Your painting of the plum and kettle captures the colors nicely. I also like your green background. Jane
Thank you Jane.
I really like the subtlety of your tones. Great richness and depth.
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