I have NEVER learned the color wheel or color theory until now.
I have never used Geneva paints until now. And I haven't done any oil painting in YEARS.
But I have been teaching myself photography over the past 10 years. And the first thing I would teach to anyone interested in using a camera...is to first study light! Don't even pick up a camera until you know how about light and how it performs, reacts and affects everything around it.
So, I guess I can also say that to myself about oil painting....first study color!
I've never been the type to want to practice, I just want to perform! Forget the analytical-side of things, I just want to be creative! Why work at shooting free-throws when I can have fun playing basketball?! But at this stage of the game, I've learned that thought process doesn't allow me to be my best and achieve success. So, I must force myself to learn about color if I want to be a better painter.
These last 5 weeks since receiving my first order of Geneva Paints have all been about studying color. HOURS of online videos watched. PAGES of books read. MIXING, MIXING and more MIXING of Geneva Paints! I told myself that I should make a set of 'Color Cards' to help teach me how the colors change during mixing and to also use as a color reference if needed....and then I got obsessive about making color cards.
I first drew up some color wheels and charts on canvas paper.
This did not go as well as planned. Color cards should not be so exact in size and shape and the spaces to color so small. But I do want to be exact about mixing ratios, so I even used syringes to measure portions!
Can anyone see my first BIG mistake? Evidently, the 'RED' that looks like RED...is actually the 'power Red'! Ah!!!!
I was soon reminded thereafter how sensitive our family dog is to tension in the air. I was slightly more than very pissed about my mistake. Oh well.
But I was determined to continue and finish what I started. I had already learned a few other things as well.
- Lots of paint will be wasted! Understand it from early on and accept it. You will throw away more paint than you use. Get over it. I started to save it into little jars and later said 'screw it, I'll just order more'!
- It will take lots of time. Be patient and pay attention. If you hurry it, then half of the lessons will be lost.
- The colors of black and white will cool colors.
- Blue is a strong tint.
- The color that looks like the primary Red, is actually the Power Red!
After this batch of imperfect color mixes was done and...because the 'red' was 'power red'...which also make all the 'oranges' and the 'purples' incorrect...I decided to do another quick batch in a different format.
Big swatches are the way to go I told myself! No more little small squares that need to be filled-in nice and clean!
This new method worked-out ok...but still thinking I could do better. I had to keep telling myself that 'the journey is as important as the destination'! Pay attention Tim and you will learn something....good or not-so-good. And by the way, get on Geneva.com and order a new complete batch of essential paints 'cuz you're gonna need them!
I ended up these two phases of Color Card Creations by feeling that I had learned more about color mixing than I had ever learned while struggling through paintings of trying to get my colors correct.
But I could do better, so I continued...
Please read 'Color Card Creations' (part 2 of 2)