Friday, November 4, 2011

Playing with Color Combinations Using Acrylic Paints In Artist's Journal



Artistic Journal Sketch
5 x 9" acrylics on paper

Recent sketches in my journal included two unusual results from color combinations. The first color palette included the familiar colors of yellow ochre, burnt sienna, and ultramarine blue. I've used these colors in landscape paintings many times. Burnt sienna and ultra blue I too easily tend to fall back on for variations of grays from warm to cool.

The subtle colors of this journal sketch I found quite lovely. I might have responded to these three colors with a ho-hum attitude if you required that I use these three instead of some bright reds and yellows. Click on the image to see a larger view that shows the multitude of colors produced by this limited palette of a red, a yellow, and a blue.



Artistic Journal Sketch
5 x 9" acrylics on paper

For this color exploration I used cadmium orange, deep magenta, and viridian. I really like the full strength viridian green positioned next to the orange. The touches of magenta near the orange colors make a rich color combination.

Besides using tried and true ultramarine blue with burnt sienna for grays notice the grays that happen when the orange, magenta, and green mix in this journal sketch. The moral of the story is that there are an infinite number of ways to produce gray colors.

It is also interesting to see the yellow component of the orange turn the viridian green to a yellow green. This is a good illustration of the nature of a secondary color, that is, orange produced from a red and a yellow mixed together in varying proportions.

If you haven't seen the "Color Chord" series of abstract paintings on greeting cards, an outgrowth of this blog focus of playing with colors, please find them here

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