Saturday, December 20, 2014

Neutral colour palettes

In response to a discussion about using neutral colours on my SAQA chat forum, I am posting images of some of my Cityscapes that use a neutral palette. The works range from low contrast...

Port Clyde #1
... to stronger contrast...

Quebec City, Old Town
to high contrast. A patterned batik was used for Open Window, Cēsis #1 to add texture to the wall of the building.

Open Window, Cēsis #1
At other times, I have used what I would call "warm and cool neutrals". Here, the warm neutrals have a touch of ochre, and the cool neutrals a touch of greyed-down blue.

Montmartre #1
The chroma is reduced further in Montmartre #2.

Montmartre #2
And for Montmartre #3 I have used the warm neutral on the sunlit portion of the buildings, and the cool neutral on the shaded side.

Montmartre #3
For Open Door, Riga #1, warm and cool neutrals, with stronger value contrast.
Open Door, Riga #1
Finally, a recent piece that uses neutrals as a background for higher-chroma colours.

Come Sit with Me, Patrick Caulfield

The subject of neutral colours is on my mind these days, because the next colour challenge for our 12 by the dozen group is "sand", which at least one member has labelled as "not a colour"!


Linda B. said...

... but only because 'sand' is not one of the saturated colours that I love! As you've ably proved here neutrals have their place and I'm currently enjoying working in very low contrast for my next 'twelve' piece!

Heather Dubreuil said...

Our grey challenge was a great success, so I'm confident we will rise to the occasion of sand!

Carol Howard Donait said...

Heather - Thanks for joining the SAQA discussion. Your neutral pieces are stunning! I especially love the contrast provided by your mottled sky backdrop in Montmartre 2 and 3.

Margaret said...

Hi Heather,
I came upon this via Beth Markel's recent post stemming from the SAQA discussion...and am inspired! I'm taking Elizabeth Barton's Master Class this year and our first month's focus is on value, beginning...with studies that invite us to consider a greyed palette...and go from there. Thanks for your beautiful work in this area!

Heather Dubreuil said...

Thank you for writing, Margaret. I am a big fan of Elizabeth Barton, and have taken three of her on-line classes. One of them, Dyeing to Design, had us dyeing a gradation of black, to produce maybe 9 different greys, and then combining them into a composition. Very instructive!

Good luck with the master class. I think I’m on the waiting list for that one next year.