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edrickart
09-03-2008, 05:27 AM
Hi all - As a result of my last thread re my Iris work, a comment arose as to mixing or not mixing colours.

On these large floral works I have done (some of you may remember my Poppy series), I really prefer to use colours straight from the tube - not mixing at all. The manufacturer whose paints I choose to use do not have the largest range of colours in the world. I prefer and actually like this, and it has become a part of my style. On other works I do mix - obviously there are times when you have to, and I accept this.

So, the question is - do you never mix, occassionally mix, or always mix?

Regards,
Paul :wink2:

Tex Tural
09-03-2008, 05:53 AM
I don't know how you could be an artist and not mix your paints. Are there painters out there that want 500 colors in tubes ready to use so they don't have to make lighter values or darker ones, or alter chroma?

I think you are missing out Paul by not doing some more mixing, but to each his own.

chammi kaiser
09-03-2008, 06:55 AM
I love to mix colours. It is so exciting to see what happens. I always mix 'lightly' so that there are variations in colour. Wouldn't be happy at all to just use colours from the tubes but that's just me!!

OkeeKat
09-03-2008, 08:01 AM
I love mixing colors and getting different shades/tones!!

Antony Burt
09-03-2008, 09:20 AM
Yes.

I just checked. Only three paintings in the past 60 paintings where I did not mix paints. One used all white paint, one was only black and red paint (and bare gesso), and one used no paint at all...

Of the bulk of the paintings, most used paints mixed on a pallete, and a few used paint mixed on the canvas.

At least two paintings used paints mixed by layers (first one colour, then another after the first layer was dried.)

I also have about a dozen or more plastic film canisters to keep custom paint mixes (using more than two colours) so when I come back to the painting, I can get the paint colours matching exactly. (Photo labs will likely just give you all you want, if you ask for them.)

Linee
09-03-2008, 09:30 AM
Except for using pure color in glazes occassionally, I almost always mix my colors. I also like to mix lightly at times, for color variation.

sonita
09-03-2008, 09:40 AM
I couldn't imagine to paint without mixing my colors :)
Soni

idylbrush
09-03-2008, 10:42 AM
Yup, all of the above.

frodron
09-03-2008, 10:52 AM
It would be interesting to know which brand of paint you use as you can achieve such good results with what is virtually a limited palette

edrickart
09-03-2008, 11:03 AM
Hi all, and thanks for your replies.

Yep, I know all artists will mix colours etc. I suppose I did not make my initial comments too clear - sorry!

What I was trying to say (hopefully correct this time) is "Do you ever work using unmixed colours straight from the tube, or tub or ........ directly onto your surface, with no intention of mixing?"

I work with mixing colours on my palette like everyone does, but I also get some satisfaction from doing non-mixed work. Sometimes it can be a challenge to work this way, sometimes it's not the right thing to do.

But, as Tex Tural says "each to their own" - and it's one of the many things that make art such a personal thing; the artist and the buyer etc.

Does this help? No offence to anyone.

Regards,
Paul

AMuse
09-03-2008, 11:04 AM
My art instructor from my abstract class last week said that she can always tell when an artist doesn't mix their own colours for a painting. I don't know that I can, but I know that I always mix either on the palette or right on the support. I also like having a colours that aren't completely mixed so I get some surprise colour variations int he brush strokes that really add energy to my work.

JamesDFarrow
09-03-2008, 12:16 PM
I use some straight up. Hookers Green, and Cerulean Blue for example.
Others I mix, or at least try to. LOL! I still have troubles matching colours I created before. It's difficult with really thick paint. With liquid paint you can measure out 1 oz of this, 1/3 oz of this, etc... but with thick paint....
I guess I could use a scale but that seems like a lot of trouble.

I am still in the process of teaching myself how to paint so I will probably mix better once I get more comfortable with it.

James :)

Einion
09-03-2008, 01:36 PM
I rarely use any paint straight from the tube, but purely because they're so often not the exact colour I want. I should mention I have had to overcome a certain ingrained (snobbish) attitude not to use colours unmixed - but if it is the 'right' colour, why not?

Just bear in mind that 1, there are no rules except for the ones that you choose to accept. And 2, unless you apply every paint at full thickness colours mix to some degree.

Einion

Einion
09-03-2008, 01:40 PM
I don't know how you could be an artist and not mix your paints.
One word: glazing ;)

Beyond that (which is a realistic example) one could theoretically like to go with some form of optical mixing from adjacent colours, something like classic Pointillist technique.

Are there painters out there that want 500 colors in tubes ready to use so they don't have to make lighter values or darker ones, or alter chroma?
Actually that's close to how some pastellists work!


My art instructor from my abstract class last week said that she can always tell when an artist doesn't mix their own colours for a painting.
You can do this to some degree, particularly if you have good familiarity with pigments/paints. To be fair though, there are often many other clues that this is likely to be the case - it's often seen in amateurish work for example - so one is not going by colour alone.

Einion

Aires
09-03-2008, 06:35 PM
I tried to think through your question and about the only time I can think of that I sometimes use straight from the tube paint is when basing out a very large foreground tree in a landscape. Even then I go back and give form and texture to that tree with other colors so it is only the initial shape where I am using a straight tube color. Sometimes in that case it is layering other colors on the orginal base color and other times it is adding a mixture. I'm not saying it can't be done, I just don't think I could achieve the picture I want without mixing colors to get the shades I'm looking for. Are you referring to some abstract painters who like to use color straight from the tube? I've run into that on a few forums.

JamieWG
09-03-2008, 07:37 PM
I almost never use color straight from the tube. When I do, it is usually to reserve a high chroma area that I will paint into later in the process, so it will not remain on the support as unmixed color anyway.

Jamie

HOllyLL
09-03-2008, 08:15 PM
almost always!~ (mostly since I'm messy and there's ALWAYS another color in each one of my piles!)

edtree
09-03-2008, 09:04 PM
:wave: This is a good question, and I gave it much honest thought. I DO use straight from the tube sometimes, mostly for areas that I want punch because the colors out of the tube are absolutely undiluted. I've used straight black at times in the deepest shadows too, and straight white for the strongest highlights. And, most times, I use out of the tube transparents for glazing.

I really think it depends on one's creative vision and that there is no right or wrong. Your style is very strong and fresh and too much mixing might just hamper that. :)

Elizabeth

Bizkit
09-03-2008, 09:10 PM
I don't know how you could be an artist and not mix your paints. Are there painters out there that want 500 colors in tubes ready to use so they don't have to make lighter values or darker ones, or alter chroma?

I think you are missing out Paul by not doing some more mixing, but to each his own.


Well Tex, Im here to tell you there are MANY excellent artists out there that dont mix a drop......straight from the tube.

As for myself I think ive covered this already...Since I paint mainly in black and white it would be quite difficult to find premixed in the colors I use so yes, I mix them. As far as the background color 99.9% straight from the tube.....Guess that makes me 1/2 artist..:lol:

amotwell
09-03-2008, 09:47 PM
I actually almost pointed out in your iris thread that I'm getting away from mixing. I tend to use colors straight out of the tube but then use a combination of glazing and scumbling to modify those colors and mix colors on the canvas.

Edited to add: For me, this makes it TONS easier to correct mistakes. . . and I make many. . .

RPut
09-03-2008, 10:02 PM
That's my favorite part--sometimes I worry about getting muddy form too much mixing. Ruthie

CamiTampa
09-03-2008, 10:33 PM
I mix Coca Cola with my rum, does that count?

I never painted a painting that didn't have mixed colors.
Cami

Roger Evans
09-04-2008, 12:06 PM
If the question is: Have I ever done an entire painting where none of the paints were mixed?, the answer would no. Are there sometimes sections of paintings where I used a color straight out of the tube?, the answer would be yes.

Roger