Sunday, June 15, 2014

Finished the Iris painting

I started this one just before DoorsOpen- having it roughly blocked in and intending to work on it during the Open Studio. Well, I did not get very much done. Then, the Irises, which had looked so great earlier, decided to "finish" -leaving only two survivors. I picked one - to have it as a close-up to paint by - and it promptly died!  Fortunately, I had taken photos earlier so I was able to complete the painting- in spite of lack of cooperation on the part of the models. I used some quinoxidine purple, some cobalt blue, some Azo yellow and I was wondering what a medieval artist would think of the colour assortment that I have- especially the man-made colours. We, in this age, are very fortunate with our colour selection and the studies that have gone into it. The National Gallery in London, England is opening a new show called "Making Colour" with the galleries arranged by dominant colours in the paintings. The history of what was available is then clearly visible. At one point, blue was very costly as it came from the gemstone Lapis Lazuli . It was often reserved for the robes of the Virgin Mary. Today, we have Ultramarine - in red or green shade, Phthalo Blue, Cerulean, Cobalt--- a wealth of blues. Van Gogh used some yellows - one of his favourite colours- that have unfortunately darkened but today we can read lab tests about permanency and see samples for transparency or opaqueness. We really have a tremendous wealth in current available pigments.

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