Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Zangle Cove #5

6/2/10 "Zangle Cove #5, 5" x 9", Oil
Limited palette:  yellow ochre, ultramarine blue, cadmium red light, cadmium yellow light, titanium white, ivory black.

Common sense says that artists paint the colors they see. But somewhere I read that artists see the colors they paint, so it is interesting to paint with color mixtures that I really don't see right off in the scene in front of me.  At the very least, its a way of thinking about color in the landscape that can bring new inspiration and break habits.  This is one of the lessons and benefits of painting with a limited palette.


  1. Thank you, thank you, thank you! for posting your paintings so large. It is AMAZING how abstract this one looks up close, and how beautifully it reads in the thumbnail Kathryn.

    I admire so much that you are continually exercising, stretching and growing! You are an inspiration...

  2. How do you decide on your color combinations for your limited palettes?

  3. Hi Gloria--the decision for the first four of these studies was a challenge from an artist network I belong to. The others were just variations on a theme--pure experimentation. There are many "how-to-paint" art books that talk about different ways to harmonize color, such as analogous color palette, complementaries with white and black, split-complementaries, triadic color palette, etc. Some artists have their favorite and use it all the time. Trying different color palettes is a way to explore what I can do with color and to break habits of color use, and then maybe eventually I'll be able to be more purposeful about the color palette I choose for a particular painting.