On Friday I ran the Paint-the-night event at the Vanguard Gallery in Moreno Valley – and had 11 students, many of whom knew each other, so they were enjoying the evening together. We painted a scene from an open road through fields in the Ojai area – a painting I’d completed in watercolor many years ago and thought would work well as a paint night subject.
Filling in the grassland.
One of the thing that I tell students at these evenings, is that their painting is not going to look exactly like mine – which is why art forgers are paid so much.
Fences going in.
However this group all got really close to the painting we were working from! The main difference was that I had yellow ochre deep – vs yellow ochre which I usually work with, and as I hadn’t used this before, I hadn’t realized how dull this color is compared to regular ochre. I figure I learn something in every class too, so this was it for this one!
Most of the graduates. One had to go home because her baby was crying.
For those of you who have taken my Painting for Absolute Beginner’s class, you will have heard me talk about the origins of French Ultramarine.
Recently, there was another blue discovered. Or perhaps you could call it invented, I guess it’s unclear as to whether this blue would ever occur in nature. Personally I think it should either just be Yinmn blue, as everyone is calling it now, or Mas blue, after the original chef. What do you think?
I’m looking forward to it being available in watercolor, acrylic and oil.
Three concentrating on making round blue blobs into birds.
Last night there were three students at the Paint-the-night evening at the Vanguard Gallery in Moreno Valley. I’ve guided a different group through this painting before, in case it seems familiar, but they were all first time bird-watchers. They all had a lot of fun, and are looking forward to a different painting next month. If you’re in the area, and you’re interested, it’s on June 23rd. A great way to celebrate a TGIF.
Three things I tell my students, is that it is important to not lick your brush, drink the paint water or to wash the brush out in your wine (/coffee). Primarily this is because of the heavy metals in some of the pigments. Flake white was stopped being produced when it was discovered that lead isn’t good to eat. Cadmium isn’t terribly good for the digestive system either, but it is a metal that produces awesome reds and yellows from different salts; my chemistry doesn’t stretch to complete comprehension of the quinacridone range, but when you know that phthalo (you pronounce it ‘thallow’ – isn’t English wonderful!) blue’s full name is phthalocyanine blue, you might get a hint as to why brush licking isn’t advised.
But science comes to the rescue of art with replacement colors for the cadmium range that don’t contain the nasty wonderful cadmium! Liquitex isn’t my usual brand, but if Golden haven’t started introducing them by the time I’ve used all the cadmiums I currently have, I’ll definitely be giving them a try. Looks like this is only for acrylics at the moment, but something like this will likely catch on once the ban on cadmiums can be enforced because there’s a viable alternative.
Until I’ve completed the move to cadmium-free cadmiums though, don’t lick my paintings either.
Came across this article from one of Artnet‘s regular emails that I get. I’m looking forward to trying this new blue – ‘YInMn blue’, though I think there’s still time to rename it to something more pronounceable such as ‘Mas Blue’, ‘Subramanian Blue’ or ‘Oregon Blue’.
I’m not knowledgeable about art conservation, but found this an interesting article about how supposed masterpieces can be verified based on the chemistry of the paint, and why there is a collection of old paint (outside of artists’ studios….).