I had packed up my paints and turned to carry them indoors when the cloud covering exploded. Patches of blue sky dared me to stay a little longer in the gusting wind.  How could I resist?

Winterscape Oil Sketch

I enjoyed ending a long, cold, wet day on the porch with a quick sketch inspired by the movement of the clouds and the ever-changing shapes of the little blue patches.  I’m trying to move away from such strong purples, but my instincts aren’t making that easy.  Next week I will choose a different, limited palette and try for more green grays and orange grays.

I find it easier to direct my color mixing of grays when I think of them based on the secondary colors of orange, green and purple rather than the primary colors, yellow, red and blue.  This may seem strange when I am working with a limited palette choosing one of each of the primaries without any of the secondaries.  Using my Color Wheel #5, I keep my gray mixes clean rather than muddy.

The wheel is more useful by not labeling the pigments I used to create the wheel.  As I am mixing, my brain adjusts to the variations of pigments by simply looking for the most common characteristics of the hue rather than nagging at me by telling me “That’s cadmium red and you’re using Scarlet Lake.”

Oil Sketch: painted on 5″ x 8″ prepared birch panel.

Limited Palette: Scarlet Lake, Cadmium Lemon, Cobalt Blue, Titanium White

Color Scheme: Complementary – Purple /Yellow with the yellow leaning toward green.

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