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Black & white with Geneva = brownish greys

So I have done a few black and white paintings with geneva paint, using titanium white and geneva black. I have noticed when it comes to the greys they tend to be more of a brownish grey. Anyone else notice this? Any tips on how to get more of a true grey? Im sure I could just add some of the geneva blue to the geneva black, to get it more on the blue side but wondering if anyone has used anything other than geneva paints for their grey with better results? 
BOB73

Comments

  • JessicaArt

    i keep a tube of ivory black, a legacy tube, for occasional use.

    Here are ten options for mixing chromatic black. Acrylic but should translate to oil paint.



    Denis

    JessicaArtBOB73
  • @denis what do you mean by a legacy tube? is that a brand? 
  • JessicaArt

    A “legacy” tube is one I bought long before DMP and Geneva existed. Ivory black is not part of my usual palette, but is handy for the odd mix or a neutral grey.

    Denis

    BOB73
  • @dencal OH! haha Yeah, I've got a box of those "legacy" paints. haha. Looking into Gamblin's "Black Spinel" but they mention it dries VERY matte. That should be solved via varnishing though correct? 
    BOB73
  • JessicaArt

    Yes, varnish will cure the matte finish.

    For me the biggest objection to the tube blacks is how it sucks the life out of any color it’s mixed with. On the dry surface of a pure tube black is difficult to avoid visible irregularities - sheen, pinholes, dust, brush hair, insects etc. I bought a roll of black canvas to avoid this chaos.

    Denis

    BOB73
  • I don't find tube blacks do that compared to a mixed black. But when I'm mixing a colour string I start from black and build up so there is only black in the darkest shades. I don't use it as a general mixer.
    BOB73
  • Nice to see BU+UB compared to other combinations. Helps me understand why Mark endorses this method. Haven't used Geneva but the combination works well with W&N Artist's colors. When I used acrylics I used a little yellow ochre for blacks in landscapes.
  • There’s lots of ways but really just mix the primary’s together that’s what I do a lot or adjust the burnt umber and ultramarine + white till it’s neutral 
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