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Color: A Course in Mastering the Art of Mixing Colors

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Keep in mind that our pigments are not artist pigments; I have no Alizarin Crimson, no Ultramarine or Cobalt Blue, none of that. Reaper uses a more generalized palette, and thus I am very limited as to what I can do as far as matching some of the great artist hues out there.

Then too, it seems apparent that most MSP colors are premixed, and balanced by hue with individual tints and shades. To focus that intently on color specifics would naturally come with a price of sacrificing some flexibility toward mixing, as the premixing may dilute the purity of the of the saturation when mixed further. :upside: Or am I wrong?

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Someone said the tube acrylics suggested by the author are expensive but this $5 Paint Pot set from Liquitex has all the artist colors needed for the exercises. http://www.dickblick.com/zz007/17/ I wish I could truthfully say the errors I've made were because of low quality paint. They are not the best but are well suited for these exercises.

 

The intensity exercises in Chapter 7 have been difficult because they require minute additions to dull a color with it's complement until all color is canceled. For example, Orange and Blue makes a range of 5 nice autumnal oranges when done properly, but I was too heavy with the blue and went abruptly from 2 nice oranges to 3 olives. Adding minute amounts of Green into red took a little longer for me to screw up. Adding violet to yellow went pretty well and might be good blond.

 

I know some artists and designers who claim to know how to mix colors but now I think they are exaggerating a little, as they haven't produced anything resembling the RMS line of paint. I try to avoid sports analogies but Anne Foerster is the Michael Jordan of color mixing. Rather--Michael Jordan is the Anne Foerster of basketball.

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Update July 19, 2007:

- Copying the color wheel template from p. 50 onto card stock is much easier and faster than tracing onto illustration board by hand. Bonus = now I have a whole ream of card stock ($10) to use on other projects.

 

- Like Dr. Betty says, Do Not thin paints for these exercises.

 

- I bought a $5 pack of Liquitex artist colors from a craft store in little snap-tops that match her list in the book almost exactly (the green is lighter). This way I don't have to figure out which RMS paints are Cadmium Red or Ultramarine Blue etc. And it saves my expensive RMS and Vallejo for figures.

 

- Color wheel painted p. 51, easy, I knew this well already.

 

- Value wheel painted p. 61, pretty easy once I stopped being sloppy. It's a gray-scale (in wheel format) that goes from white, gray (5 shades), to black. This was very educational as it revealed that you don't need to buy many different grays. A non-welled palette or wet palette would make this especially easy.

 

- Best exercise so far pg. 65, two color value wheels = taking white to dark blue on one wheel, taking dark blue to black on another wheel. This is like making every triad. I'm doing it for every color on the color wheel for practice. This exercise seems like the one to drill until you run out of card stock color wheel templates. So far it looks like I have every triad of every color I've done so far, but honestly I wouldn't want to mix every color I need from scratch during a painting session.

 

- Pics at this point would be boring. They are just like the paint sample strips at the hardware store-- but mine have errors! These exercises are worth the effort as they reveal what you really don't understand and need to practice. With some colors, my white-to-pure-hue gradient is smoother, and others my pure-hue-to-black gradient is smoother.

 

 

 

 

 

Wow, you are doing the stuff we had to do in design class, but for fun?

 

 

 

UKHHH. I wouldn't mind If I never saw another colorwheel again. Try a 50 step grey scale. That was no fun.

 

 

Does that book cover how the same color next to two different things will look VERY different? You can visually change the color of paint by putting something else next to it.

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Does that book cover how the same color next to two different things will look VERY different? You can visually change the color of paint by putting something else next to it.

 

Yes it does, actually! That book is the BEST. ::D: My art school either sucked or figured we already knew that stuff, we never had to do those exercises in my Color class. Though I tend to believe they stunk rather than we rocked!

 

Remembering that the look of colors on a model will change as you add other colors and highlights was an important concept for me. Being willing to adjust with a glaze or extra highlight can really give a paintjob extra punch!

 

--Anne ::):

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Yes, it does. It's almost exactly what we covered in the first half of a semester long color theory class. I haven't done the exercises because I too still have horrible memories of doing all that stuff almost 20 years ago. It's a great book though.

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Keep in mind that our pigments are not artist pigments; I have no Alizarin Crimson, no Ultramarine or Cobalt Blue, none of that. Reaper uses a more generalized palette, and thus I am very limited as to what I can do as far as matching some of the great artist hues out there.

Then too, it seems apparent that most MSP colors are premixed, and balanced by hue with individual tints and shades. To focus that intently on color specifics would naturally come with a price of sacrificing some flexibility toward mixing, as the premixing may dilute the purity of the of the saturation when mixed further. :upside: Or am I wrong?

 

You are absolutely correct. ::): Thus the Clear Brights, which are pure one-color pigments (or as close as I could get), and which are meant for mixing (but still flawed by only having one blue, one red, and one yellow...). Hobby paint lines are friendly to the hobbyist rather than the artist, which is not necessarily a bad thing but does mean that if you want to embrace some of the more interesting facets of the art of mixing and color that you may need to go outside of the hobby paint box and play with some artists' acrylics (or oils, though pigments do appear and act much differently in oils vs. water-based!).

 

--Anne, still trying to find the time to go back to oil-painting...

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