Wednesday, October 9, 2013

600 Watercolor Mixes

So I'm reading this book called 600 Watercolor Mixes by Sharon Finmark. 

I love color.  More than anyone else I know.  When I was in preschool and kindergarten I much preferred dumping out my Crayola 64 box and resorting the crayons by color to actually coloring anything.  I confess I still do something like that most days.  My favorite game app is called Blendoku (available at Android Market and the App Store).  You are given a template of blank squares and enough colored tiles to fill in every blank.  The trick is you need to position the colors in order.  What order?  It depends on the puzzle.  Sometimes it's by shade, sometimes by tone, sometimes (when it's easy) just by color.  My friends look at the easy levels and laugh and say, "Lame.  That's so easy."  Then they look at the medium levels and they're like, "Whaa? I don't get it," while they walk away.  :)  I dabbled a little bit in watercolors in high school and college.  This was when I discovered that what I really loved were the colors themselves, just like my old box of barely used Crayola 64.

I'm dipping into Finmark's book a little at a time.  What she's doing here is explaining how to effectively mix watercolor paints to achieve shimmering, lifelike, three dimensional images.  Along the way she also explains some more difficult to grasp concepts of color theory.  It's like music theory's pretty little sister.  There are finished paintings that beautifully represent what she is trying to teach in each chapter.  There are also loads and loads of color swatches.  I find myself staring at those more often than the finished pictures.  The perfect green, a cool grey purple, pink so deep it looks like the heart of a peony.  I love it. 

This book is a must own for colorphiles (like me!), watercolor dilettantes, and people who wished they had paid better attention in art class.  Get it! 

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