oil paintings and photography by Amber Honour

A New Color Can Make All The Difference

A New Color Can Make All The Difference
ColoradoRiverValleyMoabUtah
8×10 oil on canvas by Amber Honour HWY 128 Scenic Byway, Moab, Utah

Getting a new red spurred me to paint this painting. I really wanted to test out the new color before using it in the Fisher Towers painting. I didn’t see the sense in trying and potentially failing and adding more frustration on a painting I’m already frustrated with. I’m really glad I started fresh. Since I painted it so fast, I actually ended up achieving a looseness that I’ve been wanting and failing to see in my paintings.

Color mixing is a problem I’m sure every artist faces. Having no formal training in color theory, I’ve gotten where I am mainly by trial and error. For the most part I’ve been able to  mix the color I’m after or at least settle on some close approximation. I try my hardest to get by with the paint I have because after years of using the same set of colors, I don’t have to think too hard about what to mix together to make my desired color.

I’ve been trying to mix a warm red using a cool red (alizarin crimson) for a while now and it has been driving me nuts! I finally broke down and bought the a dark warm red (permanent red) and now mixing the red dirt color I’m after is a breeze. It really helps to have the right colors in the tool box!

I’ve also taken some much needed advice to stop using black. I probably won’t abandon it completely, but I’m much happier with the results I’m getting from mixing dark purples for my shadows. I really appreciate all of the great advice I’ve gotten from my fellow blogging artists. Thank you.

Read more about this painting:

Part 1 – New Paint, New Painting



3 thoughts on “A New Color Can Make All The Difference”

  • Beautiful painting! I just ordered some Indian red from Blick. I’m hoping that it will be a good experience like yours. I’m like you, with no formal training, just learning by trial and error. I have used purples, but I love black. I saw a video the other day where the artist was making green from black and yellow. It produced a whole different olive green… then she went on to add white to lighten it… red to warm it and blue to cool it. It was fun to experiment with. I used it on one of the leaves of the painting I was working on at the time. I thought it had a much richer feel to it. Maybe you already have tried this… It was new to me. 🙂

    • Thank you! I hope you enjoy your new paint. I’ve accidentally mixed yellow and black, but didn’t even think about doing it on purpose. Thank you for the tip!

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