This is more of an exercise in paint mixing and handling than in producing a painting. Specifically relating to Cadmium Yellow, a colour I’ve only recently started to use in the series of Autumn paintings, just completed. Its easy to see how this colour would suit the strong yellows and oranges of Autumn but as the Winter approaches I was wondering was there a place for this strong colour in the cooler landscapes.
The first test was to see could I place the yellow on a blue background without the usual strong greens associated with this mix. This is important for me as I’m an ‘alls prima’ painter (single session, wet on wet) and there are times when I don’t want greens occurring when blues and yellows get close together. Its the ‘wet on wet’ which causes the problems. If the blue background was allowed to dry completely, a yellow like Cadmium with a little white added to make it less transparent could be painted over the blue layer. This layer would cover the blue with yellow, and without the mixing there would be no green.
The sun on the blue worked reasonably well. A band of green around the sun would not be welcome. But the actual application of the colours was a bit restrictive (see the video below). In the reflection on the water, you can see the green from the blue/yellow interaction. Its probably OK in this area of the painting, but its not a Winter colour.
The result of this experiment is that I will not use Cadmium Yellow in the series of Winter paintings I’m about to start. It is a very dominant colour. I would have preferred to have yellow in the sky, not much but a little. But that ‘buttercup’ tinge would have ruined this cold winter sky. Without a little warmth, the blue lacks dimension, its almost monochrome. I could of course use different yellows for different parts of the painting, this is heading down the road of multiple colours and the resultant lack of harmony with richness.
Anyway, here’s the video. See you soon.
Thank you for the insight into your process.
You are very welcome Alissa.
I’ve always thought color mixing was the most important thing in painting – a feat I’ve never achieved which is why I stick with photography/digital imaging. I love this scene here. Beautiful location.
Colour mixing is important and difficult. Limiting the palette does help the process.
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I actually ‘visually’ prefer this painting to many of your others, it just has a kind of ‘mystery’ to it and a ‘freedom’ -not following the ‘politically correct’ colours of the seasons. I quite liked when you had more blue in the foreground, blues and yellows I love but maybe its because I have a ‘drawing’ to some of Van Goghs Paintings.
I am more of an experimentalist than a Rembrandt, working on my ‘style’ when I get time in the ‘in between’….
I was mesmerised watching your video, I KNOW I should experiment with ‘oils’ more, have only used them a ‘small handful’ of times, but felt very ‘natural… you have inspired me…
Would love to know ‘why’ you liked one of my pictures, lots of people ‘like’ but they do not speak??? I am pretty ‘chuffed’ however at getting a ‘like’ from an ‘established’ artist such as yourself… I learn from each canvas and life experience, but I have a few ‘distinctions’ under my belt ;D I just need to ‘reach my potential’
Practice, practice, practice 😀
Good Luck and Thank You for your Fab site and Time you give for others to benefit
Love Shelly x
Thank you Shelly for your thoughts. I usually ‘like’ the unusual work, i.e. different from what I’m doing. We are individuals and different and this I find fascinating. We learn from each other.
Me also,(learning from each other) I celebrate our uniqueness and I believe ‘sharing’ is how we all grow and is a most beautiful thing to do.
At College(being an older student) I quite often found myself explaining this very point about ‘being individual’ as students continually ‘compared’ their work and judged themselves unfairly….I felt blessed to see how their imagination transferred into unique art.
My hair is currently ‘Green’ ;D… this is just ‘me’ my goal is to be more ‘free’ and ‘experimental’ on canvas!!…Im getting there ;D