Sunday, February 1, 2009


I was determined to paint an acceptable (to me) painting using this palette from Nina Leland's new color book. I created each palette by using water bottle caps and loading each cap with the appropriate color, writing the color name on the bottom and putting them in a "gift card tin" I got a Michael's for $1. The tins come in different patterns, so I can distinguish one palette from the other. They hold all but one color from the palette. I should get an extra tin to put in all the lone colors from the different palettes.

Anyway, the first attempt to use this set of colors resulted in an ugly mess. I was trying to force the colors to go against their innate nature. This palette has no ability to create dramatic darks, and most of the colors are weak pigments, have a "waxy" feel and are semi opaque and granular. It's not called a "high key" palette for nothin!

I was able to keep the color mixtures from getting too dull and I didn't try to go dark. I was able to darken the Cobalt Blue a little. I used 5 of the colors in the palette: Cobalt Blue, Manganese Blue Hue, Cobalt Violet, Aureolin Yellow and Rose Madder. I'm beginning to think 5 colors is a good number to work with in any painting. It creates a natural harmony but I think these colors are not for me. A little too "sweet".

I think I will try a painting with the other pigments in this palette that were left out this time and see what I get.

I did create a number of drawings and value studies of this image. I was surprised how quickly I was able to simplify the subject and stylize it. It happened almost immediately! Wow, this practice, practice, practice idea has something going for it.


sanjeev joshi said...

hi myrna,
one quality i must pick up from you is keep experimenting and practising!
The painting is lovely, for my eyes nothing high and low key,its just beautiful or not!

meera said...

They are 'sweet colors' like you mentioned. I guess, it does need a punch or two of darks to make it 'sing' . I learn so much just reading your blog! Thanks!

laura said...

I admire your methodical approach, and your resourcefulness in devising your palette. High key is difficult!

Peggy Stermer-Cox said...

I like the design and the colors. The palette may be sweet, but it's not too sugary. Perhaps the cools keep it from melting and turning to syrup. I have a fondness for high key paintings; it's impressive!

Related Posts with Thumbnails