Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Color Journal

A color journal is a place to experiment with color, mediums, and color combinations.

As an artist, I find it vital to stay connected to color in a very practical way, especially as a mixed media artist.

The colors often vary significantly from one brand or product to another, so I like to keep swatches of my favored materials, side-by-side on the page.

This palette "Field Mushroom Tnes"...(well, it's really a toadstool), is a palette of fresh bright primaries.

I love the combination of warm reds and cool blues and greens. This rendering uses Gallery Artist's Soft Pastels washed with water.

I'm using the Stillman & Birn "Alpha" Series Sketchbook, which I love. This book has smooth, white, 100lb paper that beautifully "sized".  "Sizing" determines the absorbancy of the paper.  The "Alpha", although smooth and flexible, will take a huge variety of media and several washes without buckling or tearing. Plus I have found with this book that can work on both sides of the page with no bleed through...very important when you are testing color palettes and mediums.

The Gallery Artists' Soft Pastel palette uses:  Helio Turquoise, Permanent Green, Ochre, Medium Flesh, Permanent Carmine, Dark Cadmium Orange, and Cadmium Orange.

I did some color matching as best I could with four of my favorite mediums: Luminarte's Silks Acrylic Glaze: Mediterranean Blue, Pretty Peridot, Solar Gold, Fuzzy Peach, Carmen, Spiced Pumpkin & Apricot Nectar

Caran d'Ache Neocolor II Water Soluble Pastels: Turquoise, Bright Green, Light Ochre, Salmon, Ruby Red, Light Cadmium Red, & Flame Red

Winsor & Newton Artists' Watercolors: Cobalt Turquoise, Permanent Sap Green, Naples Yellow, Potter's Pink, Permanent Carmine, Cadmium Deep Red, & Scarlet Lake

Luminarte's Twinkling H2O's: Mediterranean Blue, Spanish Moss, Golden Nugget, Natural Linen, Poppy Red, Spiced Pumpkin, & Yellow Rose

The pastel rendering needed a light spray of "fixative", and I found that the "Alpha" took several light layers well.  There was no discoloration, and given that soft pastel typically requires a more heavily weighted, toothy surface on which to adhere, I was amazed with how well the it held...I guess that's why they call this book the "Alpha".

If you like this palette and decide to use it, I'd love to see what you do with it.  Please leave a comment, linking back to your blog post or image.

Thanks for checking in. xx