I had a big realization today regarding technique that I feel will help a lot of artists out there who may feel lost with technique. I've written about this before, but I realized again that if you think there's a right way (and wrong way) to do something then you're doing it wrong. By this I mean that there is no right way and wrong way to do something and you can throw all those ideas away. Don't limit yourself in your thoughts. Give yourself freedom to experiment with your colors, your paint thickness, brush selection and anything else.
That being said, I did want to document my current oil painting palette as a way to track my progress. Below is my current full palette, but I definitely don't use all these colors in every painting, but it's a good starting place for anyone looking for a broad range to choose from.
Current oil painting palette as of 7/22/19
1. Silver White (Zinc + Flake)
2. Cadmium Lemon
3. Cadmium Yellow Light
4. Cadmium Yellow Medium
5. Yellow Ochre
6. Cadmium Orange
7. Cadmium Red Light
8. Cadmium Red Medium
9. Alizarin Crimson
10. Venetian Red
11. Burnt Sienna
12. Oxide of Chromium Green (Winsor & Newton)
13. Viridian Green
14. Cobalt Blue
15. Ultramarine Blue
16. Prussian Blue
17. Cobalt Violet
18. Raw Umber
19. Burnt Umber
20. Ivory Black
I got to try out my Jullian en plein air umbrella today with all this beautiful sunlight. I used the umbrella with my Mabef field easel and it worked beautifully. It really made it easier to gauge my colors on my palette and on the painting. What I really like about it is that it's white so it doesn't completely block out the sun. It's also not too small nor too large. If you're a plein air painter, then I highly recommend that you pick one up.
I look forward to using it a lot more as our flowers grow and I paint all summer long.
Painting from life, outside, is the best feeling ever. I set up my new palette, did a small painting of some hyacinths and I'm very proud of it. I'll be doing a ton more paintings as the weather gets nicer!
Setting up a basic academic color palette
I am going back to some basics in my colors and I've removed all the colors that I didn't deem necessary for me. The palette of colors below is based on many different sources and is a combination of traditional (academic) colors along with a few "modern" pigments; by "modern" I mean colors that came onto palettes in the ages of Impressionism in the late 19th and early 20th century (cadmiums + cobalt and cobalt violet). It's not as limited as some palettes, but I think this is a very well rounded palette for figurative work as well as landscape, still life and genre paintings. I'll be using it and always experimenting and evolving.
-Silver White (mixture of flake + zinc)
-Chrome/Cadmium Yellow Light
-Emerald Green (Veronese Green)