Thursday, September 15, 2011

Watercolor Cards for Handy Reference

It's always fun to try out new pigments.  I've had several in mind for a while that I've noticed in other artist's palettes.  Anytime you open an art book from your shelf or attend an art class, you will usually discover the author/artist's palette selection and a discussion of warm and cool colors.  Many artists have more than one grouping of colors they enjoy using, depending on the subject and the season.  Others use the same color wheel most of the time.  This is a matter of preference and what appeals to your eye.  
Having a palette already selected before you begin painting makes decisions easier while you work.  And trying out new pigments is a bit like holiday magic.  This week, I visited Jerry's Artarama and returned home with two new brushes and four new tubes of paint, all Winsor Newton.
Above, Winsor Newton squirrel mop for juicy washes (larger brush), and a round #3 sable for detail work.  Tube paints:  Perylene Maroon, Cobalt Turquoise, Antwerp blue, and Cadmium Yellow.

Though Winsor Newton tube paints are now marked with letters signifying their translucent characteristics, for example, "T" for translucent, O for Opaque and "S's" for those in between, such as SO (semi-opaque), I like to display my pigments on a handy card so I can see the pigment qualities in an instant.  Different brand pigments by the same pigment name can be very different in both brilliance and translucence.
Above you can clearly see the opaque characteristics of WN Lemon Yellow and WN Raw Sienna.  You can also see that Van Gogh Raw Sienna is a different shade of pigment when compared to the WN watercolor pigment by the same name.

The "cards" I use are simply the back side of a used piece of 140# coldpress watercolor paper torn into same-size strips.  On one side create a black permanent magic marker strip.  If you paint across this strip and the pigment allows you to see right through to the black, you have a very translucent pigment that will create wonderful glazes.  If the pigment is visible on top of the black strip, you get a sense of the granular quality and the opaqueness of your pigment, qualities that add texture and variety to your work.

Visit these Winsor Newton pages for more information on Watercolor pigments and Hints and Tips

1 comment:

  1. Very helpful, thank you! I may give this a go in my studio!

    ReplyDelete

Welcome! I am glad to hear your comments, questions and feedback! Vickie

Ocean Trail at Rancho Palos Verdes Preserve, California--2015

Ocean Trail at Rancho Palos Verdes Preserve, California--2015

Joshua Tree National Forest, California, with son Chad and daughter Thuan--2015

Joshua Tree National Forest, California, with son Chad and daughter Thuan--2015
Photo credit: Thuan Tram

Bird banding with Mark Armstrong at Seven Islands State Birding Park - 2014

Bird banding with Mark Armstrong at Seven Islands State Birding Park - 2014
Photo courtesy of Jody Stone

Birds Close-up

Birds Close-up
Photo courtesy of Karen Wilkenson

Enjoying Gray Jays in Churchill, Manitoba

Enjoying Gray Jays in Churchill, Manitoba
Photo courtesy of Blue Sky Expeditions

A dog sled experience with Blue Sky Expeditions, Churchill, MB--2014

A dog sled experience with Blue Sky Expeditions, Churchill, MB--2014
Photo courtesy of Blue Sky Expeditions

Churchill, Manitoba--2014

Churchill, Manitoba--2014
Photo courtesy of Blue Sky

2014 Hummingbird Festival

2014 Hummingbird Festival
Photo courtesy of Jody Stone

Smithsonian National Zoo with one of my Whooping Crane art banners and son, John--2014

Smithsonian National Zoo with one of my Whooping Crane art banners and son, John--2014

Muir Woods on the Dipsea Trail at Stinson Beach, California--2014

Muir Woods on the Dipsea Trail at Stinson Beach, California--2014
Photo courtesy of Wendy Pitts Reeves

Checking out the gulls at Stinson Beach--2014

Checking out the gulls at Stinson Beach--2014
Photo courtesy of Wendy Pitts Reeves

Discovery Hike in Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska--2012

Discovery Hike in Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska--2012
Photo courtesy of Ruth Carter
Related Posts with Thumbnails