Sunday, August 7, 2011

Color and mixing exercises

Making the grids for these little charts was an exercise in patience. It seems that the 1/4" width of the tape and the minimum 1" width of the square didn't exactly make for even divisibility into the 9"x12" canvas board I used. And I'm a real stickler for that sort of neurosis. I made it work eventually. It took me near all day to get it to work. I was really happy and eager to get to painting and I really tried not to rush it. I knew if I messed it up and it looked uneven it would really bother me.

I tried to organize it as light to dark as I could make out. The naples yellow was the hardest of all the colors since it starts out so light to begin with. In the picture it actually is hard to make out the change at all. The book said 5 values. At my class, the teacher had us do small examples with three. I found the 3 value one to be fairly easy and got the hang of it quickly in class. This 5 value one was quite a different story. Even though it seems logical that the 3rd value should appear halfway between and the 2nd and 4th values should appear halfway between those, respectively, it's a lot harder in practice. While I think the entire 10 values would probably be excessive, I actually think it would be way easier to judge out the small gradations and make than even. If you roll a ball down a steep hill, you know it will get to the bottom and touch the spot where the hill meets the ground. If you bounce the ball, it's harder to get the ball to land on that spot.

I really wish there was some way to figure whether or not this actually correct. Some of the values feel like value 4 is the mid point and that the rest of the values are just gradations down between the actual 50% and between, almost like value 4 and the other values seem too light. Like there's a huge dump between the straight from the tube and value 4 and the rest of the grades are fine. Yet when I attempt to correct them, they seem far too dark. Even adjusting one or two seems to throw the whole thing off and make it seem even more wrong.

Sometimes it's really so hard to see the cause of an error because all you know is that something is wrong and you can't figure out why. And sometimes you don't really know if there is an error. Something may feel off and it may just be my own lack in my abilities that's telling me something is wrong when really there is nothing wrong. Also having the other colors next to them was difficult to make the judgement and I probably should have covered them up as I did each column.

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