Sky bluePosted: October 8, 2014
Antagonistic. That was what the weatherman called today’s weather. Sunny one minute and wild rain squalls the next. I would probably have described it as turbulent or unsettled, but I like the weatherman’s word better. In any case, it made for great skies and it reminded me of something I’ve been meaning to post.
I did a test some weeks back on Cerulean blues made by different manufacturers, in part because I wasn’t happy with the way some paint on my palette was performing. I have always thought I wasn’t brand loyal — any artist quality paint would be fine, especially if it was on sale — but I have lately come to realize that with some colours the brand can make a huge difference. Other painters have probably come to this conclusion already, but I think I’m only noticing it as I start to work on larger sheets of watercolour paper. The problem I was having was that Daniel Smith Cerulean was very weak and if I tried to get a more saturated mix, the colour would get no deeper. The test I did was to compare M. Graham and Holbein Cerulean with the Daniel Smith (unfortunately I had no Winsor Newton on hand to add to the test). The results are below. As you can see, no matter how little I diluted the paint, I could still not get an intense blue compared to the Graham and Holbein samples. I have since replaced that blue with the M. Graham pigment and I’m much happier. And the sky practice below is one I did on Lopez Island this summer in the Tom Hoffman workshop.