palette space


A first attempt to mix shades of grey with acrylic to show how the appearance of a colour depends on the background. The three lines of grey paint blobs were intended to have the same range of shades from black to white. See how the grey blobs on a dark background appear lighter than the same grey on a white or mid-grey background.

One thing I found when preparing colours is that it’s important to have lots of paint and lots of space. Even painting these simple blobs needed more paint than I had mixed up. I tried to mix a second batch half way through but found the new mix was slightly warmer (in terms of colour) than the first. It’s better to prepare the right amount to start with than add to it half way through.

When making these colour steps, it’s easier if you have lots of space on your palette. There wasn’t really enough room to work within my ice cream carton lid stay-wet palette (wet kitchen towel covered with greaseproof paper). It’s just about big enough for a small sketchbook painting, but I really should be following Will Kemp’s advice about laying out a palette, and using Mark Carder’s method for preparing accurate colour steps.


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