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Old 03-28-2012, 01:57 PM
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J.G. J.G. is offline
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chromatic black for shade scale

I have decided to expand my paint collection by adding variety to the brands and colors I use. I plan on making a tint and shade scale for each new color I acquire, something I've never done before. In the past I've used Ivory black as my go to essential black when painting. I would like to transition into using chromatic blacks. I am having trouble discerning what would be the best chromatic black for creating the various shades on the scales. These are the options I have been tossing around in my head, and I welcome an critiques, comments, suggestions and or modifications.
I should note that my palette is a generally combination of CMY and RYB with the addition of raw umber.

1) chromatic black composed of three primary colors
2) raw umber mixed with the opposite cool color for warm colors, and umber mixed with the opposite warm color for the cool color. Example: umber mixed with a cool blue to make shades of a warm orange.
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Old 03-28-2012, 02:38 PM
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Einion Einion is offline
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Hi, welcome to the forum J.G.

Quote:
Originally Posted by J.G.
I have decided to expand my paint collection by adding variety to the brands and colors I use. I plan on making a tint and shade scale for each new color I acquire, something I've never done before.
Great idea

In terms of mixed darks/blacks, before you commit to using one or more it would be worth running some quick sample blends with your existing palette members along with a few of the new purchases to test out how they mix in direct comparison to your Ivory Black. Very often a mixture that's dark enough to truly stand in stead of a black pigment will mix very similarly, to the point where there can be no difference to speak of in gross colour and therefore no point in using such a mixture.

Take note of the proportions in the mixes you try though, so that if you do determine that one or more of your mixes gives you something that Ivory Black doesn't you can replicate the mix again for doing your scales.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by J.G.
2) raw umber mixed with the opposite cool color for warm colors, and umber mixed with the opposite warm color for the cool color. Example: umber mixed with a cool blue to make shades of a warm orange.
Not sure why this would be a good method overall, since a well-chosen mixing complement will by itself mix with its opposite number to produce a dark-valued neutral. The Raw Umber would tend to produce a slight overall umberish colouration, is that maybe what you'd be looking for in this case?

BTW, what medium are you using? Except with watercolour it doesn't make much difference but wanted to check.

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Old 03-28-2012, 04:21 PM
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Re: chromatic black for shade scale

Einion - Thank you greatly for the welcome!

I use oil paints.

My reasoning for wanting to use chromatic blacks is, I am hoping they will add more color dimension to the shades, supposed to just cold black.
I do admit that using chromatic blacks would just add more work and complications to making and keeping track of mixes.
I began by experimenting with adding raw umber to my Ivory black to speed drying time when painting grisailles. Than I tried a mix of ultramarine blue and raw umber. I enjoyed the softer shades that were accomplished when adding the umber to ivory black. I am not completely sold on using a chromatic black. It just sounded like it could possible that it would add another dimension to my shades that I may be missing out on by using ivory black alone.
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Old 03-28-2012, 04:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J.G.
I enjoyed the softer shades that were accomplished when adding the umber to ivory black.
In addition to the benefit of the faster drying, that's as good a reason as you need to use something other than straight black.

Quote:
Originally Posted by J.G.
I am not completely sold on using a chromatic black. It just sounded like it could possible that it would add another dimension to my shades that I may be missing out on by using ivory black alone.
One or more mixes might, but often this is something that works out better in theory than in practice. If you do get mixes that are genuinely so dark and relatively neutral as to be considered black they will tend to act just the same in mixes (within the range you'd get from one black pigment to another).

Worth experimenting all the same. One of the simplest variations that's been suggested here and in Oil Painting a few times is to start with black and modify it in some way, as you've already done. In addition to being simpler and faster it's also cheaper, which in the long run could be an important factor.

Most any very dark colour can be used to make a simple coloured black, and any truly transparent colour (including one or two yellows and synthetic earths) will work too without causing a problem by raising the value.

Einion
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Old 03-29-2012, 09:42 AM
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Re: chromatic black for shade scale

Mars black, Pbk11 , is fast drying black paint.
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Old 04-01-2012, 02:29 AM
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querin querin is offline
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Re: chromatic black for shade scale

A lovely black which is transparent and lively, I make with phthalo green Pf7 and Perm alizarin I can cool this or warm it by adding more of the one color ,these are staining so they create a very dark dark a quin red Pr 209 is also good this is the mix it's non staining some brands call chromatic black easily mixed.I use this mix for watercolor also.
querin

Last edited by querin : 04-01-2012 at 02:32 AM.
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Old 04-05-2012, 10:30 AM
rghirardi rghirardi is offline
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Re: chromatic black for shade scale

Gamblin makes a chromatic black. You might find it helpful as a basis.
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