The Everyday Life of a Working Artist

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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Limited Palette Plus One

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Green Boat and Friends, Oil 8" x 6"
Sold.
Although I have only been painting for three years I have used a limited palette since day one. I use the same colors every time I paint ... and I have gotten good at mixing colors. I find that I can mix a color very quickly and get it right all the time ... this is especially helpful when my paint piles run out ... however ... when I tried to mix the green in the boat ... I couldn't get it using Sap Green, Cad Yellow, Ultramarine Blue and Titanium White ... I just couldn't get it right. So I went over to my paint drawer (clearly labeled "PAINT" and located in my new craft room) and I pulled out a tube of Phthalo green. My first question was ... who came of with the name of this color and where in the heck did they come up with the spelling? And how does one pronounce it? Putting my issues with name aside, it did offer me a chance to mix the green I was looking for. So, here is the "green boat" painting. I feel a bit like I "cheated" but it worked!

13 comments:

Dana Cooper Fine Art said...

No way did you cheat! It's a beautiful painting and the addition of the phthalo (pronounced "thalo") makes it pop, well done,Leslie!

Edward Burton said...

Very beautiful, Leslie! Wonderful composition.

Vicki Shuck said...

Beautiful! Pthalo green is a color all its own and you made it work so well! PS--we had sunshine at Newport Beach for the wedding and I could swear I saw the boats you painted!

Bill Guffey said...

Nice Leslie. There is no cheating when picking your colors. Changing it up every once in a while can bring something new and exciting. You should change all sometime, keeping a red, yellow, and blue, but not your usual, and see what comes out of it.

Marian Fortunati said...

Pthalo or thalo is soooooooooooo potent... it's beautiful but can be deadly!!

Not on your painting though!!

LSaeta said...

So ... Thalo is evil but good? Tee hee ... You guys are too funny. Vicki - I am so glad you had great weather this weekend in So. Cal. And Bill - I love your idea about trying new versions of my colors. Do you have any suggestions?

Sandra Galda a Daily Painter said...

Excellent compositional rhythm and color combo! Love your vibrant colors and the theme of boats. Your brush work (knife work?) is always exciting to view. Love your work!

Sally Shisler......... said...

Wow - this is really nice. Ditto on what everyone else has already said. I am totally scared of anything close to pthalo green! Every single time I try to incorporate it, it just becomes gaudy to me. I really envy other artists who are capable of pulling it off successfully - and you have certainly done that in this one. Keep experimenting. Try mixing everything you think you'll use first - that will help you keep away from the same palette over and over. I spend at least an hour mixing - it saves time when I get stumped on what to try next. For me, mixing as I go is very disruptive.

Elenka said...

I think there is a little demon that runs around and names paints, including house paints. Unreal.

LSaeta said...

Sally - I actually do mix all of my colors up front. I learned that technique early and I really thinks it adds to a more harmonious palette and a lot less frustration! Once I have all of my colors mixed I take a deep breath, relax and then start the painting!

Vicki Shuck said...

You're tagged! I nominate you for the Passion for Painting Award! If you want to follow through, instructions for doing so are on my blog on Tuesday's post. Congratulations on your stunning work!

Karen said...

No, not cheating! Finding what you need to make it work. And it does.

Dean Grey said...

Great job here, Leslie!

Your boat paintings are wonderful to look at.

Green is my most favorite color so I'm partial to this one.

I'd never have guessed you used a limited color palette. Your paintings always have such intense colors I just assumed you used a whole bunch of different paints.

How many colors do you normally use in a painting?

-Dean

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