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View Poll Results: number of colors on my most frequently used palettes
1 color: I do only monochromes 0 0%
2 colors: only two colors in my palette please 0 0%
3 colors: I'm a primary guy/gal 1 0.40%
4 colors: one color for every quadrant, or not 4 1.62%
5-6 colors 19 7.69%
7-9 colors 32 12.96%
10-14 colors 68 27.53%
15-20 colors 54 21.86%
21-26 colors 44 17.81%
27-32 colors 16 6.48%
33-38 colors 7 2.83%
39-52 colors 8 3.24%
>52 oh, thank you for not making votes public! 12 4.86%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 247. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-24-2016, 09:22 AM
indraneel indraneel is online now
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How many colors on your palette?

The argument came up recently, and we have no clinical trials to back up responses...!

Count only your frequently used palettes, those used in the last 6 months, not something from forever ago. If you've last painted more than six months ago, please also leave a comment.... and hopefully paint more. If a color exists on the palette, it gets counted even if used rarely. If a color exists that absolutely never gets used (like a reference black or something), it can be omitted. However, accuracy is not paramount, as counting is binned. Multiple choice enabled to reflect limited /plein air /studio ... palettes

so let loose the pans of paints...

oops.. almost forgot... those using only fresh tube colors every painting on a clean washed palette, please count as you see fit... the colors you keep near at hand, take outdoors etc... you know what to do

May also list your palette if you want, but not necessary. And yes, all comments, explanations, excuses welcome!
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Old 07-24-2016, 09:31 AM
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virgil carter virgil carter is offline
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

I use tube paints. Never all of these in a single painting, but some in one painting, others in another painting. It depends...!



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Old 07-24-2016, 09:38 AM
indraneel indraneel is online now
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

Virgil, good thing you brought this up. This poll counts whatever exists on the palette, not what is used in each painting. So your magic number would be 18, unless there's something on the palette you never ever use.
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Old 07-24-2016, 10:56 AM
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virgil carter virgil carter is offline
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

Yep, 18 it is for me. I have two empty wells which I use for "guest colors", which allows me to explore new and/or interesting colors not normally on my palette.

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Old 07-24-2016, 02:14 PM
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

My "usual palette" is 9 colors. But, I also have a little pocket box I carry 'round the house with me, so I can paint while watching TV or waiting for the oven timer. It holds 12 colors, but I've managed to force 14 into it. I also have an antique metal box that holds 28 1/2 size pans, and it contains just about every paint I use.

I do have a stock pile of oddball tubes that I pull out once in a while just to play with, and a while back I did a bunch of experiments with black paints, so I have several of them in a separate little box.

For the vast majority of the time, my 9 core colors are enough to tackle just about anything.
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Old 07-24-2016, 02:18 PM
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

I put down 7-9 but it's really hard for me to tell; sometimes I use a palette/most times I actually DON'T...which really makes it difficult when I go to workshops (out of my "comfort zone", so to speak). I tend to use foam bowls for each of my colors; depending on what my subject is, I will usually use anywhere from 3-7 "bowls". My most used colors are Indigo, Burnt Sienna, Moonglow, FUB, Cobalt Blue, Manganese Blue, Green Gold or Undersea Green (or I mix my greens from my blues/yellows), FUB, Cobalt Blue, Quin. Yellow; if I use a red, it's usually Cad. Red or Quin. Coral.

If I want to "mix" my colors (in the bowls as opposed to the palette), I just dip the corner of my brush in one color and add it to the other color and blend them (not too much) gently together. If one of the bowls gets too "dirty", I just wipe it out a bit with a paper towel.

Don't know why I started using the bowls versus a palette...probably wanted to keep some color (most likely a yellow...) clean/pure and just developed the habit. What's REALLY SAD is that I have a TON of palettes (some WITH paint/most without) that I almost never use. I must admit that some of them WILL be used for acrylics at some point as I want to do more "Mixed Media" in the future.

Michele
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Old 07-24-2016, 02:23 PM
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

I base mine in the complete palette from handprint.com.
I don't include black and white but do Paynes grey and sepia.
I also add 3-4 other nice colors I like.
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Old 07-24-2016, 03:50 PM
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

Thanks Indraneel, for putting this up! I'm glad you clarified that it's residents on the palette, vs. what's used per painting. I have 24 unique pigments, counting the well of white gouache. The 25th pan is a premix of Burnt Sienna and Ultramarine, which each exist in separate pans, so I didn't count them again. Still falls in the 21-26 bin though. Some of these are rarely wet, but they are there for a reason, so I included them all.

My usage has changed over the years. I used to paint often with just two pigments, perhaps up to four. As I've morphed into quick plein aire work with a more Urban Sketcher feel, having color available on the fly is much more practical than navigating the challenges of extremely limited palettes. Those years were valuable practice though, because boy do you learn how paint works when stretching two or three pigments to their limits. I still like to keep the total pigment count lower in a given painting where practical - it just looks more cohesive to me. The difference is that now, if I'm painting a courtyard full of people in differently-colored clothes, I'll happily give them each a unique pigment. In 2012, everyone's shirt would end up some combo of neutralizing complements.

Here's the current lineup, and the theory for arranging it. Small Koi waterbrush for scale. The various earths labeled by name are all PBr7.



Now, if you had asked about how many tubes are in my drawers…
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Old 07-24-2016, 06:00 PM
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hblenkle hblenkle is offline
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

Hansa Yellow Med., New Gombage, Quin. Gold, Pyrrol Orange, Pyrrol Red, Quin. Red, Perm. Alizarin Crimson, Rose Ultramarine, Ultramarine Blue, Cobalt Blue, Thalo Blue, Thalo Green, Hookers Green Deep, Sap Green, Undersea Green, Burnt Sienna, Raw Sienna, Sepia, Paynes Grey, Burnt Umber, and two mixes in wells. One mix is a Turquoise Green and the other is a redder version of Burnt Sienna.
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Old 07-24-2016, 07:44 PM
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

I'm crazy for colour! I have a LOT of tubes, numbering about 65 I think. I certainly don't use that many at any given point in time and I often forget what I have squirreled away. I keep an extensive set of colours on my palette, but I have begun filling half pans with the extra colours I don't often use. By recording the names and pigment numbers along with the brand, I've been able to put them to use. I store the half pans in large altoid tins.

Anyway, my day-to-day palette:





Cyntada... more than 65??? Please say yes.
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Old 07-24-2016, 08:41 PM
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

Whoa! Such a beautiful clean palette. A model for all of us!

So interesting how each of our palettes are similar and yet different! Thanks for posting.

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Old 07-24-2016, 10:06 PM
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

Quote:
Originally Posted by CharM
Cyntada... more than 65??? Please say yes.

Just counted. Erm… there's 89 of them. That's counting some duplicates, like Venetian Red in several brands, and some same-pigment-different-flavors like the many PV19 formulations.

A lot of the tubes that don't see everyday use are tried-and-true recommendations like PG7, that most beginners purchase. Fine pigments, all of these, but with time and experience I settled on others that best meet my needs. A few of them didn't live up to expectations, while some (like the multiple Venetian reds) were me hunting brands for the exact shade/handling that I wanted.

A few months ago I placed all the tubes in these plastic boxes that I had. Now almost all of them have a label with a swipe of paint, and a more detailed swatch card. Makes it very easy to find something if I need a "guest paint" for a project. I've got a half or whole pan of most of them as well, which makes it very easy swap one into my palette as needed. Over time, the 8 mixing pans in my palette have dwindled to two, because I keep adding guest paints that become permanent residents.





Not that I'm obsessed with paint or anything! Nope, not me!!!

Come to think of it, that IS a frightfully clean palette, Char! Did you just fill it?
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Old 07-25-2016, 06:13 AM
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

I love reading about people's palette choices.

I've always used tube paints, I put them fresh into a palette for every new painting (although there are always a few colours in common). I have four sets of watercolour paints so I've gone with the set I put together last year which I use for my 'serious pieces'

Ultramarine blue, raw umber, burnt sienna - go in virtually painting.
Yellow ochre - in most paintings.
Lemon yellow, lamp black, Hooker's green, Windsor red - used frequently.
Permanent rose - not used very often but is probably my favourite colour.
Cobalt blue - my newest shade, bought because I wanted granulation which I don't get from my ultramarine
Cadmium red light - hardly use as my tube is gloopy and a bit like painting with treacle - I'd throw it away if I hadn't paid so much for it
Chinese white - I've used this in one painting.

So 12 colours in all.
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Old 07-25-2016, 06:33 AM
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

I have 4 palettes. 2 for outdoor painting and 2 for studio painting.
One with 12 colours and one with 16 colours for outdoor painting.



One with 20 colours and one with 34 for my studio.


Plus my 12 colours Kuretake Gansai Tambi ( for both studio and outdoor use)

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Old 07-25-2016, 08:12 AM
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Re: How many colors on your palette?

I promise you that my palette doesn't look like that today. I took the picture when I filled the palette for the first time.

Cyntada, your filing system is fabulous!

Wonderful well used palettes, Marialena!

I fill wells in inexpensive palettes for my Beginners to purchase at my cost. It really helps them begin their painting journey. These colours are not intended to create a specific limited selection of colours, but I've tried to offer them a set that will mix a wide range of colour. Based on Virgil's advice, I have begun including an orange (PO62) in this set.

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