Sunday, February 16, 2014

February 16, 2014

I wouldn't bet a wooden nickel on what the conditions will be tomorrow!  This morning it was nearly idyllic, almost boring, temperature started out at about 52ºF, sun with some clouds softening the harsh blue sky, and providing some interest up there.  No major wildlife events, other than the Boulder equivalent to the Serengeti Plains massive Wildebeest migration... Here we have a strange herd animal that is adorned in very tight skin, usually black with Italian or other advertising graphics branded all over them, that have very odd looking round legs that spin constanly... Boulder area bicyclists were out en masse.  That's how it started...

It ended with winds that were blasting at a steady 25-30 mph, with gusts hitting the 45mph mark!  I had to use my bag of tire chains to weight my tripod down from the center post.  That held it still, but it was flapping like a card on a bicycle tire!  I managed the last two paintings while it was like that, fortunately it was a nice warm 63ºF.  Even with the wind, that temperature felt so good that I really didn't mind it that much.  Only problem was trying to put the brush where I thought it should go.  Best part of it all was the Golden Eagle that was perched up on a knoll, close to the last one I painted, that would every so often raise it's wings to launch into the strong wind, flying barely a few feet above ground level, and chase prairie dogs all around their 'town'.  I also saw it try to take out a raven, chasing it in the high winds, the raven could barely move forward, the Golden Eagle only slightly more able to.  I guess it was too much work as the eagle slipped back up the hill side and perched on a rock until it's next little jaunt chasing dogs.  That made the wind worth it.

Today I decided to use another favorite limited palette of mine.  You may know of the great painter, Ned Jacob, who lives in Colorado.  He's been a favorite of mine for 30 years.  I knew he used a limited palette, but had never seen what it was until another fabulous artist and friend, Robert Lemler, told me to give it a try.  I have used it quite a bit over the last two years.  The version I use is slightly different than the one Ned uses.  It's a perfectly abbreviated spectral palette.

It is... Cadmium Yellow light (Ned uses cad yellow medium but I like having the slightly cooler yellow for things like turning a sky slightly green), Cadmium Orange, Alizarin Crimson, Ultramarine Blue, Titanium White.  That's it, but if you mix the missing secondaries you will see you have a full spectrum palette to work with.  Below are a couple of charts I made to show the chromatic range of the palette, and to show some of the grays that you are able to achieve with those 4 colors, plus white.  What I've also discovered is that there is another aspect to the color you can achieve with this palette. That is that the transparency of the mixes can be very different than the same mixes used opaquely.

Thanks for looking in... Enjoy!
ps... Sorry for the glare on some of these.  I had to rush tonight.

Some possible grays from the palette used today.

The "Ned Jacob" palette showing the full spectral range, and some neutrals.

2-16-1 "A Field With A View" - oil - 8x10
©Marc R. Hanson 2014

2-16-2 "Wind Coming Up" - oil - 8x10
©Marc R. Hanson 2014

2-16-3 "Wind Blasted" - oil - 8x10
©Marc R. Hanson 2014

2-16-4 "Last Stand" - oil - 8x10
©Marc R. Hanson 2014

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks Marc, I love the limited palette! It is very exciting!! Always happy to find truly excellent painters using it.