Monday, 19 January 2015

Vandy Massey - Week #4

Just to mix it up a bit, I've put the Quinacridones on hold for a week and shared one of my favourite funky colours from Daniel Smith.

I've always been drawn to blues. I have more blues in my palette than any other colour, and its a colour that features in most of my paintings. Daniel Smith's Lunar Blue is one of those paints that, for the right painting, brings something a little but special. 

As you can see from the colour swatch in my colour journal, this is a combination of a black and a blue pigment. The blue is a bright turquoise and the high granulation of the black pigment allows the blue to shine through.

Arches watercolour journal entry for Daniel Smith Lunar Blue
Lunar Blue in the palette. Once its wet, the granulation is visible before it even hits the paper
It was quite difficult to photograph the wet paint in the palette in sufficient detail to be able to show the break to blue. The photograph is a little blurred, but this still gives a pretty good clue about what it will look like on the paper.

Lunar Blue, Ultramarine Violet and Ceruleam Blue
 Using this colour on Bockingford 300gsm paper, I set up an underwash for a semi-abstract landscape which I will finish later. Cerulean and Ultramarine Violet create sky and distant hills. Then Lunar Blue in the foreground granulates wildly to create lovely textures.

Lunar Blue Treescape

I finished the exploration of Lunar Blue with a Treescape painted solely in Lunar Blue. By starting with a dilute wash at the top of the page, going in with more concentrated pigment as I came down the page, and tilting the paper to get the black granulating well, the distant landscape was established. Then going in with a second layer of much denser pigment in the foreground, and less dense pigment to create some finer detail in the mid-ground, the landscape takes shape.

Daniel Smith Lunar Blue can be a very dramatic colour.  And when it's appropriate to use, it can be used as a monochrome, but finishes as a two-colour work.