I have begun to use simpler color schemes in my dotage as a painter. I used to use hundreds of varieties in my work as a novice painter. As I’ve become more advanced in my thinking, I have become more and more minimal in both value ranges and color palettes. it really makes painting easier and more harmonious in my view. I’m not much of a theorist about painting. My brain doesn’t work that way. I don’t have to know why. Does it work is my thinking.
I often use a color scheme based on two sets of compliments. The color scheme uses four colors arranged into two complementary pairs with white. It is a great palette and gives me a lot of variations.I try to make one of the four dominate if possible, allowing the others to mix as neutrals. So I would be making green dominate a landscape, using orange and blue as neutrals, and using the red to dominate the trunks, fences etc. For a water scene I would let blue dominate the painting with orange and blue as neutrals, and again red and green in the tree masses. I have been using this rectangle palette for about 7 months. It gives me lots of room to use variety as an accent to the two sets of compliments and yet provides harmony for me when I premix neutrals to incorporate into all of the color in my palette. This palette has made me much more aware of the correct use of neutrals, and has controlled my wayward palette much more than any other I have used, except for my old standby of three primaries and black and white.. Combining this palette with the study of NOTAN, has improved my work. At least I hope so.
One of the exercises I give students is to think about the palette they choose and why they choose it? I think it is helpful to have a dialogue about the colors we choose to paint with. What made you chose them? Why use them? What is the advantage? I am constantly tweaking my palette here and there. I love certain ones that I have charted over the years and I get in the mood for them from time to time. That is the big advantage of charting palettes. My charts are usuall 5 to 7 colors only for a particular chart. When I get antsy for something new, I go to my chart book and reuses some of these favorites, to get me in the mood for paintings.
There are some neutrals I like to pre-mix. I like to use UB/Titanium White or Naples Yellow/Red Iron Oxide. For cool I like Thalo Blue/Ivory Black/Titanium White. There are lots of others of course, but I like these.
More musings for artists and collectors to come…..
I used to make my version of Quiche Lorraine all the time as a caterer. It is an old standard but really good. I do know some men who eat quiche.
4 OZ chopped ham
2 slices fried and drained, crumbled bacon
1/2 small onion finely diced
1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
pinch of dried thyme leaf
8 oz shredded swiss cheese
3 eggs beaten
1 cup half and half
1/2 cup mayo
pinch of white pepper
pinch of nutmeg
1 T all purpose flour
1 pie crust in pie pan or quiche pan.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees
Mix up cheese,ham,bacon,onion parsley, thyme, pepper and spread into pan. Smooth out the top but don’t pack it down. Mix mayo, half and half, nutmeg and eggs together thoroughly. Place pan on a baking sheet and carefully pour mixture over the cheese/meat mix. Place in oven and bake until golden brown and firm to the touch. Let cool a bit before serving.
Other ingredients can include broccoli,mushrooms,asparagus,cheddar cheese,spinach, or anything else you like.