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Colour jail. So unfair.

Colour jail. So unfair.

Sometimes we get stuck in a rut with our art.

We find success with a particular colour palette or technique and we stick with it… until we die inside.(jk)

I hadn’t realized how committed I was to my colour palette until I came across this image from an Art Tutor blog post on tonal values.
Art by ©Francoise Nielly
Franoise Nielly web page
Francoise Nielly paints beautifully rendered, realistic portraits in fantastical colours.

They are breath-taking. Alive.

And they work because CONTRAST and TONAL VALUE is more important than colour. DERP.

You can do the squinty-eye thing or convert to black and white like the above and see that the “rightness” of a piece has very little to do with the chroma – providing the tones and contrast are correct.

I forgot… Again

I knew this already.

I just forgot. Again.

I learned this lesson when I was in my early 20’s and falling in ‘squeee’ with Stephen Quiller.

He painted cute sheep and a kick-ass colour wheel… But it was his colours that seduced me.

©Stephen Quiller

©Stephen Quiller

They weren’t… Normal.

I mean… They looked fine, they looked okay and they fit…

©Stephen Quiller

©Stephen Quiller

But if you actually looked at them – those are not any colours you’re going to find on a hillside of sheep or cliffs… Just not really… Not ever.
©Stephen Quiller

©Stephen Quiller

I loved that. And I admired Stephen Quiller’s skill with colour to be able to choose boldly with such ease.

©Stephen Quiller

©Stephen Quiller

I understood back then that colour was irrelevant and I could be more adventurous and explore colours AS LONG as I was watching my contrast and value… But I forgot.

Insight is lost when it’s not grabbed and rooted into the ground of reality.

That’s the secret lesson of this post. The take-away that will be lost to those that scan and don’t read right to the end.

The secret and most valuable tip is to immediately practice any insight you receive. In any discipline – self-improvement & self-knowledge… But especially in art – practice your insight immediately and make it real, make it your own.

If you don’t you’ll find that you’re remembering parts of yourself 20 years later.

"Live creative."
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Show Notes:

Podcast Music:
“Passing Time” by Kevin MacLeod
YouTube Audio Library