Pigments of the Imagination
Using a base palette of primary colors, I painted a series of color swatches
to determine all the hues in between, to help me visualize the gradience between primaries. To borrow a musical analogy,
it was an exercise in “doing my scales” with color tones. Lascaux Sirius Acryl acrylic paint is the perfect pigment for this.
In researching the properties of pigments, I found
that single-pigment paints provide more reliable mixing results and better
lightfastness compared to the common “convenience mixtures” that are
pre-mixed in the tube at the factory (the price for convenience is impermanence, perhaps).
However, the various pigments used by acrylic paint manufacturers differ by quality and chemistry, and some pigments are better than others.
I created this chart
which aggregates current pigment research with
common acrylic paint ingredients to determine a brand’s relationship to pigment quality.
I thought it might be useful for the wider interwebs,
so I posted it.
Nova Color is an independent acrylic brand based in California. In doing research on acrylic pigment quality, I isolated the Nova Color results into a separate table,
to make the information easier to find in search engines. I like using Nova Color paints, and was looking for a table like this on the internet when researching their brand,
so I thought this might be useful.
→ nova color
Color is not part of the material world; color is part our phenomenological
experience of the world. Our senses are already on shaky foundation here. But when we come to understand that
the color magenta is even not on the visible light spectrum, we realize that our brain is truly just making things up.
CMY/RGB Color Wheel
The traditional artist’s color wheel, with primaries of red, blue and yellow (RBY),
could use a reboot with an
understanding of the role of the extra-spectral color magenta.
The CMY/RGB color wheel,
which combines primaries from the additive and subtractive color gamut,
represents a more accurate interpretation of visual color.
→ color wheel