View Full Version : The Color of Green

03-21-2000, 11:55 PM
Tonight in Chat we had a very good discussion of the color "Green". Could some of you post your thoughts on mixing different greens and also how you would handle a spring green tulip leaf with a red tulip. (the color of the shadows ?) I am going to read the loggs, but did not want others to miss this great information.

03-22-2000, 03:54 AM
llis,,,pull any yellow or yellowISH color, dirty yellows, warm/golden browns are almost yellowish, up to almost orangy, no reds or reddish.....and add them to various blues, blueish, blacks, no reds or reddish. now this all depends on the ambient colors as well. in other words, if you mix a green that has too much blue in it to be called green,,,,then just add a really blue background and the greenish blue will appear greener....as for your shadoe green leaf...i don't know what color the green leaf is but for any leaf shadow, try adding a bit of black just to darken, add a bit of blue for atmosphere, and add any hue that surrounds the leaf( like if there are a lot of red flowers casting a reddish tone over the area, add a bit of that red as well),,,,,then just eyeball the shadow color till it "appears right",,,,,the bottom line being that a shadow of a leaf is dark green after all....milt

03-22-2000, 10:41 AM
I like to use phthalo blue (where did they get that name?!) for most of my greens. It is really intense so be careful! many of the other blues have some violet and will not give a true green. I would probably tend to do shadows in a warmer tone with some violet or reddish violet or warm brown added. You proabaly are not going to want to contrast strict red against green but will key your painting towards the red tones or the blue-green. that will make the difference of the quality you want to give to your red or green and you can coordinate the contrast color to the overall mood.
Anyway its really all reative to the whole coloring of the painting --greens and reds can run the range. I rarely use a green that is made up right out of the tube but find I can get just about anything I want with mixes involving phthalo blue, or ultramarine blue/ with various yellows, violets, siennas.
I do like to use true violet, because I find that mixing a really good one does not work as well and this color works well to mute so many others.

03-22-2000, 03:34 PM
Drew, what a great idea for a new topic - name the greens! We can invent new words - a WetCanvas vocabulary...

Phyllis Rennie
03-22-2000, 08:31 PM
Well......I know I've created a lot of greens that I named YUK! Phyl

Drew Davis
03-23-2000, 12:14 AM
I like to use phthalo blue ... where did they get that name?

From the pigment -- copper phthalocynanine, PB15 or 16, depending.

English has lots of words for yellows (golden, bronze, tan, brown), but we seem to have a lot fewer to apply to all the greens, despite the fact that they take up as much space on the color wheel.

03-23-2000, 06:35 PM
my 2cents..
to me green is 'rowdy' (thats a texas word)
but i love it.

my favorites are
Emerald by Holbein
Green Grey by Holbein
Cinnabar Green by Windsor...(that yellow green that vibrates)

04-26-2000, 07:43 PM
Greens for many are considered most difficult. For foilage, based on other's comments I guess I do fairly well with them.

What is odd is how sometime we become known for succeeding in the very thing we try to avoid!

I paint outdoors....Ssheesh, how do you avoid greens? http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/rolleyes.gif

Well...green is one of those colors I try and work hard to get the viewer to think they are seeing without painting much of it.

I use any hint of another color to stray from it. Reflections of blue sky off needles and leaves, reflection off dew and surrounding colors. Distance refraction giving opportunity to use cool colors. Colors that respond to the lowering of the sun, in which case a pine can be painted red, and still psychologically appear as a "green" pine at sunset in the viewer's mind.

I am learning that some artists cannot do without Pthalo green on their palette, but live and paint in places such as Hawaii such as my friend Don Jusko in Maui. The greens there must be intense is all I have to say.

For myself, I use my warm and cool blues, and my warm and cool yellows to create many varieties of green, and my reds to grey them or neutralize them when they get out of hand.

I use many complimentaries almost by instinct now, to make other colors appear what I want them to be. Chances are if my greens appear bright and warm, there are complimentaries nearby. Thus...my greens come by avoidance and suggestion.


"Art attacks can skill!"

05-29-2000, 08:51 AM
Avoidance and suggestion Iseiler is the best use of green I have ever heard of. I am about as Irish as the day is long and I do love the green. However, many paying customers do not. So there should be some balance between the two don't you think? Avoid and sugest and the amount of green will be just right lassie. I always "grey" the green with red when subjects are in shadow. You can cool it or warm it however you like. Violet from the factory is superior though, strange huh?

05-29-2000, 11:27 AM
Actually, if you do much landscape painting, the "red" in the green does a better job of making leaf color than "true" green (whatever that is). Particularly in the case of red flowers. I must admit that my landscapes are few and modest.

God Blesses!

06-09-2000, 01:48 PM
Aside for viridian (non-staining green , bluish) – PG 18, I think I won’t keep already prepared greens anymore in my palette, as I think that it is perhaps better to mix them instead of using those already prepared, that often look “false”.
I noticed that with aureoline yellow (non-staining, primary yellow), resin gum yellow (non- staining orange yellow),french ultramarine (non-staining and granulating blue), cobalt blue (non-staining light blue), manganese blue (non staining light blue, for mixing light and bright greens) and blue windsor green hue (staining phtalo blue, not properly primary, but almost) I can get a wide set of green hues, correcting also them with rose madder and permanent rose.
I made a lot of experiment, as i like very much painting flowers. http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/smile.gif
bye, rapolina.

06-28-2000, 12:46 AM
Have you ever tried mixing Payne's Gray and Gamboge? I was introduced to this color in a watercolor course. It is a wonderful, kind of neutral green. Wonderful for the dusty foiage we have so much of here in TX. It is a great base for many greens, adding touches of thalo blue or green, viridian...etc, to give a realistic hue to a variety of greens.

06-28-2000, 03:55 AM
I got a beautiful green for wood foliage mixing Van Dick brown with viridian.
it is transparent and half staining.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/smile.gif ciao, rapolina

06-28-2000, 09:15 AM
I eluded to my friend Don Jusko in this thread earlier, but...I have posted one of his Hawaiian paintings (acrylics) up in the critique forum, one of Hawaiian Tulips. Those of you here interested in the color green will have to see it! Foilage after a fresh rain, with sun backlighting them. I think it an incredible success, and again attests to what must be some incredible greens to be seen in Hawaii.

Don teaches a colorwheel theory that works with Yellow, Magenta, and Cyan....YMC, and we go round and round about it, as I just generalize and stick to Yellow, Red and Blue, or YRB. His system works for him I think!


07-05-2000, 03:12 AM
Green, my favorite secondary color.
Why is Thalo Green better than Veridian? Simple,it has no black in to fight.
Thalo Green is a mixing color usually, very few things in nature are pure Thalo Green.
Dio Purple and Thalo Green make the atmospheric green in the distance, before it changes to an Ultramarine Blue.
Yellow, Orange, Red, Scarlet, Magenta, Purple, Ult. Blue and Thalo Blue will all add their changes. Magenta is the color to mix with it for a basic Green shadow. Not counting the reflections or colored light.

Talking about green in pigment and light...
COLOR WHEEL IN ELEMENTS AND CRYSTAL http://www.mauigateway.com/~donjusko/1color.htm
"Light is a painters element, it has shape when it is confined and its intensity and mass can be measured. Full sunlight's weight is equal to the weight of a single grape, spread out over an entire football field, and that is constant weight This light reflects off the primary and compounded elements we see around us. Permanent pigments are made of these elements, either organic, inorganic or
synthetic. Each element, in it's natural and calcined state is capable of making and reflecting only a select portion of the color wheel.
That element also has painting characteristics unlike any other element, so if you like it for its characteristics, it cannot be replaced."
Don Jusko

07-05-2000, 07:55 PM
I use Viridian and Sap Green for mixing when I'm doing a really green landscape. They're pretty translucent and mix and overlay well. My mainstays are Yellow Ochre and Pthalo Blue.

08-27-2000, 08:56 PM
when I want a different shade of green, I mix cadmium yellow medium with (mars) black



10-09-2000, 11:45 PM
I am new to this, but this past summer I've been working with Pthlao Green, Cad. Yellow, and Cad. Red, because I wanted to work with just transparent or transluscent colors. I get and amazing range of greens. I also use pthalo blue, diox. purple, and zinc white. When I need the richness I use Burnt Umber with the Cads. and alot of gloss medium (this is acrylic, but I was doing the same with oils before I had to switch...) For opaque, B.U. straight, also Tit. White, and Yellow Ochre. I'm really learning the value of working with a limited pallette, and would sugest that those of you with any color predjeduces challenge yourselves to work with those colors. I intend to rotate mine

10-10-2000, 06:26 PM
As a newbie I am still surfing around to get to know the site, but your GREEN discussion caught me.
I just posted a portrait in pastel on green paper. I did a picture on acid yuccky green yellow a few months ago and it is one I would call a breakthrough. As overall ground, the green just made the flesh SING. The forcing of reds and oranges into the usually pinky and pinky grey nupastel I use for my local color puts much more life in the work.
Also, as I commented in my posting, the Egyptian god Osiris, of the underworld or AFTERlife, is green. My portrait of the boy for his mother gives me a good karmic sense.

Now how about exploring the emotion of green???


10-22-2000, 06:32 AM
Just went to Donjusko's web page. Magnificent! bookmarked it and will spend some time there, when I have more.

God Blesses!

10-22-2000, 09:54 AM
I love red then I like green...uh guess ya'll noticed that in some my work? hehe! I just don't seem to have alot of variation. Yep, that's my prob.

Tammy "I MUST be an Artist, artist".

[This message has been edited by tammy (edited October 22, 2000).]

11-05-2000, 08:00 PM
Windsor & Newton Viridian and Sap Green lightened with Windsor Lemon or darkened with Burnt Umber. I am still experimenting but get some nice natural colours out of these combinations I think.

12-23-2000, 11:11 PM
Isn't it nice that some paint companies have finally made a Green blue/side and Green warm/side. Back when there was just Thalo Green it was impossible to make a cool Yellow. Well, Yellow and Thalo Blue would do it, but now the universe is expanding! I like the little subtleties between a hazy day and a rainy day Yellow. Transparent Thalo Green by the way is opposite transparent Acra Crimson in acrylics and Transparent Magenta in oils. When you mix them together you make a neutral dark, the shadow color.

[email protected]

Painting tips (http://www.mauigateway.com/~donjusko/fine2.htm)

12-09-2001, 08:31 AM
Cindy asked a question about greens.... just pulling this thread back up for more discussion.