Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Warm/Cool bias - No More Pre-Mixing - and no more Naples

Ok, I keep running into this everywhere now. In my recent oil sketch (gone horribly wrong) I randomly used cools and warms all over - in light and in shadow.

Last night I re-read parts of Alla Prima by Richard Schmid, and he was adamant that if lights are warm then shadows are cool and vice verse - in fact he said this is basically all you need to know about color.

I was dreaming over and over about - something. I understood it clearly as I was waking up and it made me laugh - but now it's buried. I can dimly remember I was doing something - carefully poritoning out - was it heaviness and lightness? Something like that. And as I was beginning to wake, still dreaming but able to think consciously a bit - I laughed silently because I understood it was a metaphor for light and dark values. And maybe warms and cools, since those are what I'm now learning need to be carefully portioned out alongside values.

Also, the Scmidster talked about the method I'm using now for pre-mixing little dabs of color on the palette. In fact he said exactly what I lamented recently - that it just takes for freakin' evar!! And it takes up too much room on your palette. He also said it's wrong. So is adding a little of the dominant color into each color on the palette or into your white. these are formulae and they don't produce good artistic results.

Good! I'm glad to hear it. I was NOT looking forward to spending another 2 hours mixing little dabs of color before each painting. And then only using a few of them before cleaning the palette.

Instead you mix colors as you go. You still keep the same mindset - be very careful to pay attention to value and color temp - just do it only as you need each color.

I like that a lot better.

I suppose doing a color treatment before beginning is also a good strategy - it can help you decide what colors you need.

I did learn a lot from the pre-mixing experience though, and in fact it was an invaluable experience. Without it I wouldn't know much about what colors I can make from what I have on my palette. I suppose someone like Shmid knows what colors he can mix because he's done his charts - I need to do mine soon. He said for years he always had them with him while working and would consult them constantly.

Also, I'm going to take naples yellow off my palette. It can be mixed from yellow ochre and white. Don't need it since I have 2 other yellows now. Hell, 3 if you count burnt umber!

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