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View Full Version : Mixing a hue of Prussian Blue


LordScorpius
03-15-2007, 07:58 PM
I would like to create a mix the end result of which will be Prussian Blue. What colors would I mix?

Einion
03-15-2007, 09:33 PM
There are a number of ways this might be done but a little more information would be useful - see the Colour-mixing problems section in the ****Starting tips and posting guidelines**** (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=298912) thread.

Einion

Patrick1
03-16-2007, 02:21 AM
I've never used Prussian Blue yet but I'd try Phthalo Blue + a bit of a middle red; this'll dull it a bit and shift the hue a little away from greenish blue and towards middle blue. But of course it depends on which pigments you have.

Richard Saylor
03-16-2007, 02:50 AM
In my experience, Prussian blue is a greenish blue, having about the same hue angle as pthalo blue gs, but darker in value and lower in chroma. I think pthalo blue gs + ivory black should makea pretty good Prussian blue.

Red would tend to pull pthalo blue toward cobalt blue, which is much more of a middle blue than Prussian.

Richard

Einion
03-16-2007, 09:05 AM
I like the blue-violet + green route myself, just because it's a great application of theoretical understanding of colour-mixing geometry.

In my experience, Prussian blue is a greenish blue, having about the same hue angle as pthalo blue gs, but darker in value and lower in chroma.
Yep*, can't help but think of that any time The Joy Of Painting is on and you see piles of the two beside each other on Bob's palette, or in the case of the last one I happened to see a bit of (only yesterday) his son's.

Red would tend to pull pthalo blue toward cobalt blue, which is much more of a middle blue than Prussian.
A cad could work as a mixing complement. Interesting thought here - which would darken and dull the appropriate amount, complement or black?

*I like the coincidence that two 'previous generation' pigments, Prussian Blue and Viridian, have phthalo alternatives of nearly the exact same hue but providing more strength and brilliance.

Einion

Patrick1
03-16-2007, 11:13 AM
But going by this, Prussian Blue is quite a bit more 'reddish' than Phthalo Blue GS, it's the same hue as Phthalo Blue RS, and even close to Cobalt Blue (! ?). Having never used the real thing, I can't verify. That color wheel plots the pigments at, or close to, their dilution of maximum chroma in watercolors, so if you're using at other concentrations, the hues will vary.

http://www.handprint.com/HP/WCL/cwheel06.html

I also like the violet-blue + green approach; probably the easiest way to go. Anytime I want a slightly dulled 'anything', my first impulse is often to combine each color slightly adjacent on either side of the target color. I don't know why this method is so under-promoted, it's so easy.

edit: if Prussian Blue is very cloe to Phthlao Blue in hue, I wonder if Bob Ross only included it because it's slightly duller than Phthalo Blue, or for other reasons, like less tinting strength. If only for color reasons, why couldn't he just add a bit of his Midnight Black to the Phthalo?

Einion
03-16-2007, 12:50 PM
But going by this, Prussian Blue is quite a bit more 'reddish' than Phthalo Blue GS, it's the same hue as Phthalo Blue RS, and even close to Cobalt Blue (! ?). Having never used the real thing, I can't verify.
I think it would be very difficult for any one of us to judge accurately anyway (small differences in hue here, which variance in value and chroma would make even harder to assess) which is what makes the Handprint data so immensely valuable.

FWIW hue angles:
Prussian (Iron) Blue - 263 to 274;
Phthalo Blue RS, 252 to 275 (some examples of the green shade are in the 260-270 range).

That color wheel plots the pigments at, or close to, their dilution of maximum chroma in watercolors, so if you're using at other concentrations, the hues will vary.
Yep, that's certainly got to be borne in mind. A good example of PB15:3 is distinctly cyan in undercolour (for the uninitiated: more toward green when used thinly) as we know, but this is something that Prussian Blue is noted for too.

I also like the violet-blue + green approach; probably the easiest way to go.
I think the balance point might be easier to maintain in another mix (particularly if black + phthalo works as hoped) but as I say I just like that one as a neat application of theory. Any less-obvious mixtures like this are good support for the value of a theoretical understanding, q.v. that other thread. I'm tempted to answer the next few "How do I mix...?" questions with this kind of thing, just to make the point :)

Anytime I want a slightly dulled 'anything', my first impulse is often to combine each color slightly adjacent on either side of the target color. I don't know why this method is so under-promoted, it's so easy.
Yeah! Because it's unsatisfying in some way, less dramatic? Don't know.

Related to this, you have the Liquitex mixing booklet don't you?

edit: if Prussian Blue is very cloe to Phthlao Blue in hue, I wonder if Bob Ross only included it because it's slightly duller than Phthalo Blue, or for other reasons, like less tinting strength.
Hard to say, especially as I'm not certain if the phthalo he used back then was a RS or GS. I personally doubt the tinting strength would have been a big issue from how he painted (and Prussian Blue isn't weak). No two ways about it though, paints that close in colour are clearly redundant on the same palette unless there is a big difference in some other attribute. As you mentioned black + phthalo surely the would have close at least.

Einion

FriendCarol
03-16-2007, 06:22 PM
This is probably as good a place as any to say I have the Liquitex booklet (came with a gray scale I've detached and appropriated, fwiw). If anyone wants it, I'm not using acrylics myself so it's available. A few years old, if that matters... I also have a number of other brochures (list of all 120 Albrecht Durer w/c pencils, by number and name, for example) I don't need. Happy to pass them along.

Aside from that (and back on-topic), I've remembered finally that it was dioxazine (Winsor violet) & Winsor (phthalo) green BS suggested as a mix for Prussian blue -- think it was Richard who reported this in some thread, a few months back. ;)

LordScorpius
03-16-2007, 06:46 PM
I'm really amazed that virtually no one here uses Prussian Blue. This is yet another support that most authors of most books teach because they don't do! Apologies for the blanket statement and its ignorance. However, I've spent more money than I wish on books to learn about Color and mixing only to find once again that Prussian Blue is a phantom color... probably an adaption from old Oil painting books of the 60's and the like. Especially when taking into consideration what Einion says, even if it wasn't meant as I'm taking it, the Prussian color has been replaced by more modern paint. I digress though. In my new spirit of social peace and community membership, I instead focus on how grateful I am to Patrick1, Einion, and Richard for offering their free advice. Pardon the vent.
All three of your works are awesome so, may I please ask one last thing of you with the color adjustment you've help me to make? How's this for a palette?
White, Black and Burnt Sienna (of course) then
Alizarin Crimson and Cad Red Deep
Anzo Lemon Yellow and Cad Yellow Med
SAP Green and Phthalo Green
Ultramarine and Phthalo Green
Dioxazine Purple

I should be more equipped than able to paint any color in the world with these, yes?

FriendCarol
03-16-2007, 08:33 PM
Your list -- second line from last -- you meant phthalo blue, yes? It comes (in most brands) in 2 flavors, GS & RS (green shade & red shade). Since the RS flavor is very, very close to ultramarine, presumably you intend to use the GS?

Backing up, you don't really mean the genuine article "alizarin crimson" (which is fugitive) I hope, but perhaps some 'permanent' aliz. crimson, or a hue, which the manufacturer has given that label? What is it actually?

Finally, I used to have sap green on my palette (w/c), but it's so easy to make from phthalo green I dropped it. Maybe it's useful as a convenience mixture, though; so many painters seem to like keeping it around....

P.S. Don't know if this holds for your medium, but just as burnt sienna is a great darkener for warming colors, dioxazine is a wonderful darkener for cooling colors. They make a very useful pair!

Richard Saylor
03-16-2007, 09:07 PM
I'm really amazed that virtually no one here uses Prussian Blue.I do. It's a great landscape blue.

...How's this for a palette?

White, Black and Burnt Sienna (of course) then
Alizarin Crimson and Cad Red Deep
Anzo Lemon Yellow and Cad Yellow Med
SAP Green and Phthalo Green
Ultramarine and Phthalo Green
Dioxazine Purple

Alizarin crimson and sap green can be fugitive. Check the permanence ratings. A cool red, such as quinacridone rose, could substitute for alizarin. For sap green, maybe oxide of chromium. A single green (pthalo) may be sufficient anyhow. You listed pthalo green twice. Did you mean for one of them to be pthalo blue?

Richard

Edit. I didn't see FriendCarol's post before posting this. She covered pretty much the same turf.

Richard Saylor
03-16-2007, 09:29 PM
edit: if Prussian Blue is very cloe to Phthlao Blue in hue, I wonder if Bob Ross only included it because it's slightly duller than Phthalo Blue, or for other reasons, like less tinting strength. If only for color reasons, why couldn't he just add a bit of his Midnight Black to the Phthalo?It could be used for very subtle blending (into "liquid" white :rolleyes: for shadows in snow, for example). Pthalo blue may have too much tinting strength for certain subtle effects. Also, Prussian blue is a siccative, much like burnt umber, but less prone to problems with the paint film. However, it doesn't seem that Bob Ross would have had much use for siccatives.

Richard

LordScorpius
03-16-2007, 10:00 PM
It's twisted just how closely your advice matches what actually happened at the store, the end purchase result. Yes, I meant Phthalo Green and Phthalo Blue. Thank you for the edit. A good friend I just met here on WC advised me that these two are a great substitute for the Viridian and Prussian of the past.
I am working towards doing mostly human skin with the Alizarin Crimison Hue. I could not be persuaded toward the need for Sap Green as a stand-alone paint. But I did take the "real" Cadmium Red Deep and "real" Cadmium Yellow Light instead of the Lemon Yellow. Cadmium paint (Acrylic) and I imagine all paint is, in my book, very-very expensive. I will have to judge whether the 800% increase in price over the Student grade Hue is actually worth the cost. I couldn't afford to paint with the "good" stuff as a beginning artist, not selling the Art yet. In closing, I humbly thank you all for your experience and gifts.

Einion
03-17-2007, 06:51 PM
I'm really amazed that virtually no one here uses Prussian Blue.
I use acrylics primarily and it's not exactly a common paint in that medium and wasn't back when I started. In choosing oils or alkyds I'm now familiar with phthalo blues, and it's a more versatile pigment anyway, so little point IMO in choosing something less useful. Plenty of members use it though.

If I were building a watercolour palette of a certain type I might pick Prussian Blue because issues of exact pigment behaviour are potentially much more critical.

This is yet another support that most authors of most books teach because they don't do!
The idea 'those who can't do, teach' is a bit dated and has never really been that true anyway.


It could be used for very subtle blending (into "liquid" white :rolleyes: for shadows in snow, for example). Pthalo blue may have too much tinting strength for certain subtle effects.
I thought about that too but then just yesterday I saw ol' Bob using "just the least amount" of phthalo - the Prussian Blue was right beside it - for a subtle (relatively! :D) colour effect on some clouds.

For anyone that might know the series well this was the one where he starts out with the top two-thirds in red acrylic, and a black 'gesso' bottom third.

Einion

gunzorro
03-18-2007, 04:38 PM
I use Prussian, along with quite a few other blues. I love it. There is no direct replacement or exact mix for it -- it is a unique color with special properties. Prussian offers an almost iridescent quality when used full strength or in glazes. It is possibly the best blue to use for painting the deep blue green of seascapes.
As far as I know, Prussian was the first artificial, man-made blue pigment, and lead to a tremendous advance in paint making.
I don't see why anyone would even bother trying to duplicate it by other means. Prussian is almost always a Series 1 color in any paint line, making it, along with Ultramarine Blue, one of the very least expensive blue pigments.
This may be overly picky, but there is no real substitute for Viridian either! The special qualities for subtle mixing are not possible with the phthalo pigments. All else aside, Viridian is a far less powerful tinter than Phthalo Green, and so it is possible to create some very special effects with it, where phthalo would overpower the mix -- even if you weren't trying to get a viridian based color. It really gets down to what you will be satisfied with on color matching and mixing.

Richard Saylor
03-18-2007, 07:24 PM
Oil on paper. Prepared watercolor paper was covered with a mixture of Prussian blue, linseed oil, and copal varnish, and the painting was finished in one session, wet into wet. It was almost dry within twelve hours. It seems that Prussian blue was a bit less greenish twenty-five or so years ago than it is today.

Richard

WaltWally
03-18-2007, 11:41 PM
Cadmium paint (Acrylic) and I imagine all paint is, in my book, very-very expensive. I will have to judge whether the 800% increase in price over the Student grade Hue is actually worth the cost. I couldn't afford to paint with the "good" stuff as a beginning artist, not selling the Art yet.You might consider the pyroll reds in whatever brand/grade of acrylic you are using; at least in Golden it is a cheaper series and has comparable opacity, chroma and hue to the cadmiums.

Einion
03-19-2007, 04:07 PM
I use Prussian, along with quite a few other blues. I love it. There is no direct replacement or exact mix for it -- it is a unique color with special properties.
As is true of a great many pigments: you can mix the masstone easily (very); and the undercolour or tint could be mixed for separately (a single mix won't match the entire range of a single-pigment colour as a rule).

Prussian offers an almost iridescent quality when used full strength or in glazes.
Bronzing?

This may be overly picky, but there is no real substitute for Viridian either!
Ditto comments above :)

The special qualities for subtle mixing are not possible with the phthalo pigments.
Many people think the same thing about a number of pigments and I've confirmed for myself with direct side-by-side comparisons that there's nothing at all unique about the colours that many pigments can make (bearing in mind that most colours are not used unmodified by the majority of painters). The general rule of thumb is that lower-chroma colours can be made from higher-chroma paint*.

All else aside, Viridian is a far less powerful tinter than Phthalo Green, and so it is possible to create some very special effects with it, where phthalo would overpower the mix...
Use less :D


It seems that Prussian blue was a bit less greenish twenty-five or so years ago than it is today.
I've read historical references (early 20th-century colour standard) that specifically indicate it could be made much more violet than is typical now. But even today the hue, in masstone at least, can be much less toward green than one might expect - W&N's Phthalo Blue RS is among the most violet of the RS phthalo blues with a hue angle of 274 and Daniel Smith's Prussian Blue is the same; Holbein's is close too but D-R's is more violet (282!)


You might consider the pyroll reds in whatever brand/grade of acrylic you are using; at least in Golden it is a cheaper series and has comparable opacity, chroma and hue to the cadmiums.
They are great pigments but they're not quite as opaque; given that acrylics are already a little on the transparent side this small difference might be an issue for some users.

Incidentally I think it's worth mentioning that the opacity of pyrroles will be significantly lower in other brands judging from one pyrrole red that I have; it's my belief that Golden have specifically formulated theirs to try to be as close to direct substitutes for the cads as they can.

Einion

*It's important to remember that colour isn't an abstraction, it's merely a combination of hue, chroma and value. If you can match all three then that's it, you've matched the colour... which is exactly what restorers do when retouching paintings since very often they won't or can't use the pigment used in the original.

Richard Saylor
03-19-2007, 10:18 PM
...Prussian offers an almost iridescent quality when used full strength or in glazes...I never noticed that with Prussian blue in oils, but in acrylic and watercolor/gouache it will surely bronze (to an unpleasant degree in the latter).

Richard

rroberts
03-28-2007, 11:38 PM
I use Prussian, along with quite a few other blues. I love it. There is no direct replacement or exact mix for it -- it is a unique color with special properties.

Me, too. It's a wonderful color (at least for oils).

Prussian was the first artificial, man-made blue pigment, and lead to a tremendous advance in paint making.

Acutally, I believe smalt is the first synthetic blue pigment - it's a form of cobalt glass. Prussian blue was accidentally invented by the colormaker Diesbach of Berlin in about 1704 (according to webexhibits.org (http://webexhibits.org/pigments/indiv/history/prussblue.html))

There is a fascinating article on historic prussian blue particle characteristics at JAIC online:
http://aic.stanford.edu/jaic/articles/jaic27-02-001.html

cheers!

Einion
03-29-2007, 03:58 AM
As far as I know, Prussian was the first artificial, man-made blue pigment, and lead to a tremendous advance in paint making.
Acutally, I believe smalt is the first synthetic blue pigment - it's a form of cobalt glass.
Egyptian Blue. I win :)

But Jim is right, Prussian Blue was a significant colour since it was largely stable, low in cost and of course dark in value, allowing for an inherent large value range.

Here's an amusing quote about its use as a dye:
As a fabric dye, Prussian Blue was used in the manufacture of uniforms for the Prussian Army. The French, still smarting from the drubbing they got in the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71, fastidiously call it "Paris Blue," instead; but it's the same product. It's also used as a commercial pigment in typewriter ribbons and carbon paper.
Einion

rroberts
03-29-2007, 10:37 AM
Egyptian Blue. I win :)

:lol: :lol: :lol:

OK.

On a humorous note ...

I went to this page at webexhibits.org (http://webexhibits.org/pigments/indiv/recipe/egyptblue.html) to read how it was made. I was hoping for something simple like "take 2 lbs of this stuff, throw it in a pot with that stuff, bake for 2 days, scrape the residue".

But no-o-o. They said:
"Heating a mixture of a calcium compound (carbonate, sulfate or hydroxide), copper compound (oxide or malachite) and quartz or silica gel in proportions that correspond to a ratio of 4 SiO2 : 1 CaO : 1 CuO to a temperature of 900°C using a flux of sodium carbonate, potassium carbonate or borax. The mixture is then maintained at a temperature of 800°C for a period ranging from 10 to 100 hours."

Just imagine those instructions in heiroglyphs!
That's got to be about as useful as this recipe for chocolate chip cookies:

Ingredients:

532.35 cm3 gluten
4.9 cm3 NaHCO3
4.9 cm3 refined halite
236.6 cm3 partially hydrogenated tallow triglyceride
177.45 cm3 crystalline C12H22O11
177.45 cm3 unrefined C12H22O11
4.9 cm3 methyl ether of protocatechuic aldehyde
Two calcium carbonate-encapsulated avian albumen-coated protein
473.2 cm3 theobroma cacao
236.6 cm3 de-encapsulated legume meats (sieve size #10)

To a 2-L jacketed round reactor vessel (reactor #1) with an overall heat transfer coefficient of about 100 Btu/F-ft2-hr, add ingredients one, two and three with constant agitation. In a second 2-L reactor vessel with a radial flow impeller operating at 100 rpm, add ingredients four, five, six, and seven until the mixture is homogeneous. To reactor #2, add ingredient eight, followed by three equal volumes of the homogeneous mixture in reactor #1. Additionally, add ingredient nine and ten slowly, with constant agitation. Care must be taken at this point in the reaction to control any temperature rise that may be the result of an exothermic reaction.

Using a screw extrude attached to a #4 nodulizer, place the mixture piece-meal on a 316SS sheet (300 x 600 mm). Heat in a 460K oven for a period of time that is in agreement with Frank & Johnston's first order rate expression (see JACOS, 21, 55), or until golden brown. Once the reaction is complete, place the sheet on a 25C heat-transfer table, allowing the product to come to equilibrium.

Brian Firth
03-29-2007, 10:55 AM
I assume you are using acrylics? Prussian Blue is sensitive to acrylic emulsion, which makes it very hard to get a stable paint, and companies generally do not make a genuine Prussian blue acrylic. If you can still find it on a store shelf, Liquitex used to have genuine Prussian Blue PB27 acrylics. I know there are still several tubes on the shelves of most art stores where I live. It was the only real PB27 in acrylics I have ever found. I would echo Gunzorro’s sentiments about the qualities of real Prussian blue. A mix will never truly capture the real thing. Apparently when Liquitex updated the line last year, they have now chosen to use a mix of Pthalo Blue Green Shade PB15:3, Dioxazine Violet PV23, and mars black PBk11. Golden acrylics also has a Prussian Blue hue made with a very similar mix of Pthalo Blue Red Shade PB15:1, dioxazine violet PV23, and bone black PBk9.

If you are using any other medium, just buy the real thing.

Einion
03-29-2007, 10:56 AM
ROFLMAO!

That's priceless, gotta keep a copy of that one.

Einion

Patrick1
03-29-2007, 11:13 AM
...Liquitex used to have genuine Prussian Blue PB27 acrylics. I know there are still several tubes on the shelves of most art stores where I live. It was the only real PB27 in acrylics I have ever found. I would echo Gunzorro’s sentiments about the qualities of real Prussian blue.
Grumbacher Finest acrylics Prussian Blue is the real thing. I'll try it some day, as a hopefully 'gentler' alternative to Phthalo Blue (of course not expecting anywhere near the same chroma and mixing abilty).

rroberts
03-29-2007, 11:36 AM
I assume you are using acrylics?

In my case, it's oils.
I mull my own, and currently use a pigment from Kremer.
George O'Hanlon is exploring the older manufacturing method which resulted in a larger pigment particle size. I hope to try that out soon.
See this thread : Prussian Blue : Old vs. New (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=303402)

Brian Firth
03-29-2007, 01:26 PM
Grumbacher Finest acrylics Prussian Blue is the real thing. I'll try it some day, as a hopefully 'gentler' alternative to Phthalo Blue (of course not expecting anywhere near the same chroma and mixing abilty).

Unfortunately, Grumbacher no longer makes the Finest Acrylics line. So, if you can find some I'd get it now.

Patrick1
03-29-2007, 01:52 PM
Should I be worried about the toxicity of the cyanide in PB27? is it absorbed dermally? I wear gloves, but I still often get oil paint on me even when I'm careful.

Einion
03-29-2007, 02:54 PM
Unfortunately, Grumbacher no longer makes the Finest Acrylics line. So, if you can find some I'd get it now.
Did they stop making acrylics altogether or what? I was looking unsuccessfully for the Grumbacher website a short while ago to update a reference thread in Acrylics and I began to suspect that there were changes afoot in the Grumbacher camp.


Should I be worried about the toxicity of the cyanide in PB27?
Nope. I always wondered about that in the past when I first read the pigment chemical name but there weren't then and aren't now special health warnings on tubes of Prussian Blue, which tells us a lot in these days of Proposition 65 :)

Einion

Patrick1
03-29-2007, 03:04 PM
Nope. I always wondered about that in the past when I first read the pigment chemical name but there weren't then and aren't now special health warnings on tubes of Prussian Blue, which tells us a lot in these days of Proposition 65 :)

Your''re right; type in Prussian Blue in the search box for this PDF file:

http://www.oehha.ca.gov/risk/pdf/midwayvillagedraftrpt%20020106.pdf

"relatively nontoxic". That's good news to me.

Einion
03-29-2007, 03:37 PM
Also: given orally to counteract some types of poisoning :eek: That's pretty darned reassuring!

Einion

Brian Firth
03-29-2007, 04:11 PM
Did they stop making acrylics altogether or what? I was looking unsuccessfully for the Grumbacher website a short while ago to update a reference thread in Acrylics and I began to suspect that there were changes afoot in the Grumbacher camp.

Einion

They still make their Academy range of student acrylics. They also stopped making their Finest Watercolors. I did notice that at the time they discontinued the Finest watercolors, Sanford still owned Grumbacher and they were introducing the Prismacolor Watercolors line, which is pretty much the Finest watercolors in a different package. So, I figured they were consolidating brands and choose the Prismacolor brand name over Grumbacher. Perhaps Sanford is also planning on a Prismacolor line of artists acrylics as well. I don't know if ChartPak will bring back the Grumbacher artist quality watercolors or acrylics. Maybe, since they don't have competing lines they will bring back Grumbacher artist acrylics. Grumbacher Hyplar acrylics were the first artist acrylics I ever used and I always thought they were great.

gunzorro
03-29-2007, 09:01 PM
Very interesting thread! Thanks folks. :)

John H
04-01-2007, 10:05 PM
I'll try it some day, as a hopefully 'gentler' alternative to Phthalo Blue (of course not expecting anywhere near the same chroma and mixing abilty).

I have a tube of Liquitex Prussian blue and it's just a so-so blue in acrylics.

To appreciate the beauty of Prussian blue you might want to try it in oils. In oils, it's unique and has its own personality. (It's also a stronger mixer than thalo blue and will turn everything greenish if you don't control it). It has a reddish masstone but greens real easily when mixing.

Richard Saylor
04-02-2007, 12:31 AM
I have a tube of Liquitex Prussian blue and it's just a so-so blue in acrylics.

To appreciate the beauty of Prussian blue you might want to try it in oils. In oils, it's unique and has its own personality. (It's also a stronger mixer than thalo blue and will turn everything greenish if you don't control it). It has a reddish masstone but greens real easily when mixing.John, is yours the real Prussian blue (PB 27) which Liquitex has discontinued? It has been replaced by 'Prussian blue hue,' a mix of Pthalo blue gs, carbazole dioxazine, and black.

John H
04-02-2007, 05:57 AM
Richard, yes it's the single pigment. I've had it for a few years. It's OK, it just doesn't seem to have the same appeal in acrylics as it does in oils - IMO.
For acrylics, anthraquinone blue is real close to prussian's hue and chroma and is as much a joy to use as prussian is in oils (again, in my opinion).

Edit: I'll have to try Prussian Blue Hue. If it's anything like Golden's Indian Yellow Hue then it's pretty good. :-)

Brian Firth
04-02-2007, 10:01 AM
I would agree that the Prussian Blue in Liquitex is not as appealing as Prussian Blue is on oils. It does not have the deep intense hue and strong tinting strength as in oils, which may be a result of whatever they have to do to make the pigment stable in acrylic emulsion. I would also agree that Anthraquinone Blue PB60 is a better pigment, and is a close match with good tinting strength and a very deep intense hue in masstone.

Einion
04-02-2007, 10:29 AM
I would agree that the Prussian Blue in Liquitex is not as appealing as Prussian Blue is on oils. It does not have the deep intense hue and strong tinting strength as in oils, which may be a result of whatever they have to do to make the pigment stable in acrylic emulsion.
Or there could be a more prosaic explanation: their version just wasn't a very good one. I had a really old example of a red-violet paint from Rowney made from Quin Violet (clearly that by appearance, confirmed by their colourman) and compared to today's acrylics it was pretty poor.

Now while some of Liquitex's paints use good pigments - they did pioneer a few of the modern synthetic organics in an acrylic binder - some aren't great, no two ways about it, as evidenced by their opaque Raw Sienna.

...and a very deep intense hue in masstone.
Colour ;) Hue can't have intensity as that involves another dimension.

Einion

vissi_d_artemaria
07-11-2007, 12:32 AM
I'm really amazed that virtually no one here uses Prussian Blue. This is yet another support that most authors of most books teach because they don't do! Apologies for the blanket statement and its ignorance. However, I've spent more money than I wish on books to learn about Color and mixing only to find once again that Prussian Blue is a phantom color... probably an adaption from old Oil painting books of the 60's and the like. Especially when taking into consideration what Einion says, even if it wasn't meant as I'm taking it, the Prussian color has been replaced by more modern paint.

Haven't posted in here before but was going to ask some Q's about Prussian and found this thread. I love Prussian. I have it in acrylic (varying brands), oils, water mixable oils, water soluble oil pastel, soft pastel, and neocolor aquarelles. I guess ignorance is bliss...have not been painting seriously for very long and bought Prussian because I loved it. Have used it a lot now, even in encaustics, and have a glorious relationship with it. I don't even mix it that often. Then lo, I was told it shouldn't be in the palette because it's so hard to work with, darkens everything to black, becomes muddy and dull, and so on. I'm glad I wasn't told that sooner because as a relative novice, I would have assumed Prussian was too much to deal with. But it's my favorite color of all and it actually inspired my paintings and my style because of how I use it.

It was in Van Gogh's palette and he referred to it as one of the most 'condemned' colors. Whoo-hoo! I like that right there.

It can have a green/black quality and that's enhanced depending on what colors are close to it and what light it's in. I've not found other colors that make Prussian...it seems to be in a realm all its own. I did have a notion one night to add some pink...blended some permanent magenta and Prussian in equal amounts and got what still looked pretty much like Prussian. Added more magenta and achieved a rich beautiful deep blue on perhaps like an indigo but that has a green to it, yes? This had a deep sea blue for lack of another term...it may have been a blue with a name, but wasn't like any blue I've ever seen and I work with blue a good deal.

Recently, I bought a Prussian hue just for a change of pace...haven't used it a lot so don't know where that's going but it's definitely different than the real deal. Still lovely though.

It can chanbe brand to brand and medium to medium. Prussian oil is exquisite. And I've seen quite a shift in the color in soft pastel, which often doesn't even look like Prussian, depending on the brand...even in the artist's quality. On the other hand, I've bought relatively inexpensive acrylic (student grade) Prussian and found it to have all the wonderful possibilities Prussian offers. And that's what I guess I would say about Prussian Blue...it has infinite possiblities because it's so deep.

Here's a quote to inspire:

"...So, of all the colours I ordered, the three chromes (orange, yellow, citron-yellow), the Prussian blue... hardly one of them is to be found on the Dutch palette... They are only to be found in Delacroix, who had a passion for the two colours which are most condemned...citron-yellow and Prussian blue. All the same, I think he did superb things with them..."
~ Van Gogh (Letters)

Robin

Einion
07-11-2007, 03:05 AM
Hi Robin, which brands of acrylic do you have Prussian Blue in?

Einion

vissi_d_artemaria
07-11-2007, 03:18 AM
Hi Robin, which brands of acrylic do you have Prussian Blue in?

Einion

Don't laugh...I have some VanGogh acrylic... and oil...Winsor Newton in acrylic and water mixable oil. My Prussian hue is Atelier. I chose it because it was the best of the hues I looked at. I wanted Golden's Prussian but they only have it in the hue...? That's one thing I noticed...it's not necessarily an easy color to find. Is it more prevalent in the higher end brands and series? Didn't see it that much when perusing those. I'm so new at things, I'm playing to some degree with the differences. I've seen some Prussian Blue that's ho hum, even in the professional paints.

BTW, I've done some impasto with Prussian Blue and it's awesome!

zcdz
07-11-2007, 08:56 AM
Finding Prussian (true Prussian) seems to be getting harder and harder...sigh. In a pinch I've been able to mix Phthalo, black and purple. The chroma isn't as high (obviously) and that lovely ellusive quality of going either to red or to green is pretty much lost especially at lower light levels.

Ziska

Einion
07-11-2007, 03:46 PM
Don't laugh...I have some VanGogh acrylic...
Winsor Newton in acrylic...
This is actually the reason I asked - the VanGogh example is a hue too (a mix of PB15:4 and PBk11). I don't see a Prussian Blue in W&N's Finity range; the one in the Galeria line is a hue also.

Is it more prevalent in the higher end brands and series?
Prussian Blue/Iron Blue is available in most oil brands but the real thing is very rare in acrylics (see post #35 in this thread).

Einion

vissi_d_artemaria
07-16-2007, 09:52 PM
I think I'll keep my bast*rd children. :lol: They're beautiful and serve me well. DaVinci supposedly has the 'real' Prussian. The local art store carries that brand so I'll check that out.

The tubes that carry 'hue' on the label vary a good deal in color. Some are not remotely in the Prussian realm and are simply other blues with that name. Others have the Prussian characteristics.

bayard
08-14-2007, 04:45 PM
the most accurate blend of pigments to get a prussian blue hue that i have come up with is pthalo blue rs plus a small amount of quinacridrone burnt orange PO206 i think. This mixture comes pretty close to matching both hue and transparency, most commercially available hues have enough mars black to make glazes cloudy and dull. That said, there really is no substitute, any mixture will add the caracteristics of all the pigments making for a very complicated set of interactions. If you are using acrylics you will find that real prussian blue is not available. This is because the prussian blue is not alkalie stable and cannot sit in the acryic medium for very long because of the ammonia used to keep the foaming down. But you can still use prussian blue with acrylics, you just have to mix it right before you use it. i would suggest trying a water-based pigment dispersion. Try Guarra Paint and Pigment 212-529-0628 or Createx Pure Pigment Disp. I am currently using the Createx brand and find it to be quite nice, though i am not sure where to find it or if it is even still on the market, Dick Blick used to carry it but quit. Liquatex had a prussian blue a few years ago that was buffered in some way to stay stable in the tube but they ran out a while back and now offer a hue that in no way resembles prussian blue, not in hue or working characteristics. Their old product was distinctly different from most prussian blues but was close and quite nice in it's own way. In terms of lightfastness, i have had no problems even with paintings pushing 10-11 years old that have seen avariety of lighting conditions, and i have never seen the bleeding, weeping, or blooming to the surface that i have heard of happenning with oils or alklyds. please forgive my spelling i am not a typist.

stoney
08-21-2007, 01:26 PM
I'm really amazed that virtually no one here uses Prussian Blue. This is yet another support that most authors of most books teach because they don't do! Apologies for the blanket statement and its ignorance. However, I've spent more money than I wish on books to learn about Color and mixing only to find once again that Prussian Blue is a phantom color... probably an adaption from old Oil painting books of the 60's and the like. Especially when taking into consideration what Einion says, even if it wasn't meant as I'm taking it, the Prussian color has been replaced by more modern paint. I digress though. In my new spirit of social peace and community membership, I instead focus on how grateful I am to Patrick1, Einion, and Richard for offering their free advice. Pardon the vent.
All three of your works are awesome so, may I please ask one last thing of you with the color adjustment you've help me to make? How's this for a palette?
White, Black and Burnt Sienna (of course) then
Alizarin Crimson and Cad Red Deep
Anzo Lemon Yellow and Cad Yellow Med
SAP Green and Phthalo Green
Ultramarine and Phthalo Green
Dioxazine Purple

I should be more equipped than able to paint any color in the world with these, yes?

I utilize Ultramarine Blue, French Ultramarine Blue (sometimes), and Prussian Blue. UB and PB are standard on my palette.

MoonRise
09-21-2007, 06:29 PM
While looking through tubes of paint at a store a while ago (what, like you all don't do that?? :p ) I saw some Prussian Blue paint.

I looked at it in the tube and was not impressed at all with the color (yes color with hue, value, and chroma making up the color). Then I looked closer at the label and determined that it was a hue and not the real thing. :( The fine print on the back listing multiple pigments was the easy give-away on that, the front label didn't list "Hue" that I remember.

Sometime after that at a different store, I saw some tubes of Prussian Blue (hue) and for some reason tipped the front tubes out of the way and there, all the way in the back on the shelf peg was one lone tube of Prussian Blue. Real Prussian Blue, not Prussian Blue Hue.

How different could it be? Wow was it different! Even just looking at it in the tube, full strength, it was noticably different between the hue (paint mixture, not the color "hue") and the "real thing".

I didn't necessarily have a -need- for that paint, but the color seemed so interesting and nice. So I bought it. :smug:

btw, it was/is Liquitex Heavy Body Acrylic. PB27, translucent, rated Lightfast I. The hue was PB15:3+PV23+PBk11, also listed as translucent but LF II.

katarzynaskonieczna
10-14-2007, 11:23 AM
I was just thinking about the same chalenge. I just admire Prussian Blue, its quality as a transparent paint, its power when applied with a drop of white (that power is a true killer if you're not careful enough), its unusal beauty, which for me couldn't be compared with any other hue of Blue. I use Daler - Rowney Georgian Oil Prussian Blue (its labelled for "students" but its quite decent quality) and Daler - Rowney "Finity" "Heavy Body" Acrylics (for "artists"), but I would like to be able to mix me own hue too. On Munsell's Color Mixing Wheel I localised the color as Blue-Green (BP) but closer to Blue, with low value (1.5 -2) and low chroma. I would take any cold Blue - Colbat and preferably Phtalo, or I would mix my own Blue Green and try to knock the chroma down with dark grey (Payne's Grey e.g.) or black. Try it at home!

katarzynaskonieczna
10-14-2007, 11:42 AM
Two self-corrections. I use Daler-Rowney "cryla" "heavy body" acrylics ( "Finity" is produced by Winsor). And Munsell's symbol for Blue Green is obviously BG. Sorry