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Deciding what colors to use in a painting is more of a science than you think

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Color schemes, the painting techniques used to introduce harmony or dissonance to your paintings.

To be effective, color needs to follow a plan. Thankfully, there are only a few plans that really work, and they can be formularized. Very little in art is as easily understood as color. That's amazing, because color is the most subjective of the compositional elements. Beyond the basics of color alone (hue) is the concept of darkening the color (shades), and lightening the color (tints). This is referred to as neutrals and semi-neutrals. Semi-neutrals (potentiate) the colors and make them sing. The color schemes covered are:

A monochromatic color scheme is a simple watercolor painting technique.



MONOCHROMATIC. A single hue which can be darkened or lightened but exists alone in a painting.


Analogous colors bring harmony to a painting

ANALOGOUS.
A group of colors that constitute a wedge of the color wheel. Thereis no exact definition of the width if the pie slice, but thenarrower the safer. We can safely widen the wedge using semi-neutral colors. Analogous paintings arealways serene, because there is harmony between the colors



Complementry

COMPLEMENTARY. Colors exactly across the wheel from each other are said to be complementary. Complementary paintingssetup a contrastand potential conflict because the colors are opposites.



Complementary and split complementary color schemes are the color techniques I usually us in my paintings.

SPLIT COMPLEMENTARY. A group of analogous colors with the addition of the exact complement of the center color in the analogous group. This color scheme is the most complicated, colorful and potentially interesting. This is a lesson on the watercolor painting technique of using color effectively.

It sounds very difficult but in this 10 minute lesson, you will find it quite understandable.. The knowledge gained is not only useful in creating paintings, but also applies to such everyday issues such as getting dressed or furnishing your surroundings.

 

 


MATERIALS LIST

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A Color For Information
Sedimentary Warm        

Burnt Sienna

A sedimentary color; sediments quickly offering a mottled or shimmery look to the final (wash)

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Viridian

A sedimentary color; sediments quickly offering a mottled or shimmery look to the final (wash)

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Pthalocyanine Blue

A "warm" (greenish) blue.

A non sedimentary color settles out smoothly yielding a uniform finish (wash)

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Pyrrol Red

A "warm" (orangish) red.

A non sedimentary color settles out smoothly yielding a uniform finish (wash)

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Arylide Yellow FGL

A "warm" (orangish) yellow.

A non sedimentary color settles out smoothly yielding a uniform finish (wash)

There is not an industry standard name for this color. I am offering DaVincis Brand name.

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Yellow Ocher

A sedimentary color.

sediments quickly offering a mottled or shimmery look to the final (wash)

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Cerulean Blue

A sedimentary color.

Sediments quickly offering a mottled or shimmery look to the final (wash)

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Ultramarine Blue

A cool (purplish) blue.

A non sedimentary color settles out smoothly, theoretically yielding a uniform final (wash).

Actually Ultramarine Blue "flocculates" (gathers in clumps) so we only get a fairly smooth (wash)

Sadly, it's the only purplish blue thats light-fast and available to artists.

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Alizarin Crimson
( Quinacridone )

A cool (purplish) red.

A non sedimentary color settles out smoothly yielding a uniform finish (wash)

n fact, Alizarine Crimson (a very early man made pigment) lost favor when it was found non light-fast.

Today we replace it it with a better version of the same color called Quinacdridone Red.

Nevertheless, manufacturers still call it Alizerine Crimson.

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Arylide Yellow Deep

A cool (greenish) yellow

A non sedimentary color settles out smoothly yielding a uniform finish (wash)

There is not an industry standard name for this color. I am offering the DaVincis Brand name.

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Cool        
Brushes

Brushes

I use mostly "Kolinsky" (Highest quality) red sable brushes. I also have some nylon brushes that are pretty amazing. They are on the high priced side of nylon brush prices.

Brushes do the actual painting. If the brush cannot do it ; neither can you. If you are a beginner, you should watch my videos All About Brushes.
and
Watercolor Brushes – What to look for when buying them.

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Papers

watercolor Paper

I use 140 pound cold pressed paper.

I buy "full sheets". Everyone will know that means 22" x 30". They are actually a little oversized which is true for all "mold made" papers.

Heavier thicknesses than 140 pound are nice but more expensive. "Rough" as opposed to cold pressed is also nice.

"Arches" brand; actual spelled D'Arches by the manufacturer.

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Palettes

Palettes

PALETTE Has Two Meanings

1) The selection of paints available to the artist.

2) The surface upon which the paints are stored and mixed.

In this case, the paint holder is a cut down ice cube tray. It stores, along with a wet sponge, in a zip lock bag. That keeps the paint fresh.

For a mixing surface I use a flat sheet of white plastic.

Another good one is clear plastic with white paper under it. A matte surface is preferable to a shiny one.

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A wet in wet watercolor painting of a glass vase filled with flowers.
A Wet In Wet Watercolor Painting Lesson. - Flowers.
Captain Watercolor Demonstrates How To Create Depth In A Painting.How To Create Depth In A Painting. Captain Watercolor demonstrates how to paint a basket. A lesson in lifting watercolor paintPainting A Basket - A Lesson Lifting Watercolor Paint - Part 1. Captain Watercolor demonstrates how to paint objects and their shadowsFilling The Basket - A Lesson In Painting Objects And Shadowst- Part 2. Captain Watercolor demonstrates a monoprint. Adding texture using plastic wrap.Watercolor Lesson - Monoprinting - Texturing With Plastic Wrap.
Captain Watercolor demonstrates why shadows are so important in a painting.Landscape Shadows. A Demonstration How to mix all the colors from just six.Color For Beginners - How to mix all the colors. Example of complementary colors - How to plan the colors of a painting or anything else.Color schemes - How to plan the colors of a painting. Picture show contrast between warm and cool images.How to paint emotions using warm and cool colors. Captain Watercolor discusses abstract art.Abstract Art - A discussion.
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