On this page I have listed those hues which are secondary to my main colour palette as opposed to those listed here which are my main sources of colour for traditional artworks. Secondary sources should not be confused with secondary colours which are gained by combining two primary colours.
Also note that the colours I have listed are made from a single type of mineral, dye or chemical process with the exception of Payne's Grey. Many manufacturers these days will offer colours such as yellow green or reddish blue. These particular colours are just the manufacturers own blend combining perhaps Cadmium Yellow and Phthalo Green for example. Why purchase this when you would be better off mixing your own.
Cadmium Orange is a natural orange mineral, cadmium selenosulphide has a very intense hue that can be richer than by mixing Cadmium Red and Cadmium Yellow. Good permanence with strong tinting strength and opaque.
WARNING: Cadmium is a toxic substance. Read tube labels.
Chrome Oxide Green is an inorganic pigment with an olive-green color. A useful landscape hue. It has excellent permanence with strong tinting strength and opaque. Non toxic but may cause skin irritation.
Cobalt Blue or Cobalt oxide-aluminum oxide is a very costly and extraordinary stable pigment of pure blue colour highly favoured by artists past and present. Useful for all aspects of art from traditional to modern. Quick to dry in oil it has excellent permanence with good tinting strength and opaque. Non toxic.
Cobalt Green Inorganic synthetic mixed metal oxides with average to fast drying making a hard and fairly flexible oil paint. Cobalt Green provides an option for the painter to the more widely used Phthalo based greens or Chromium Oxide. A fast drier in oil, in water colour Cobalt Green has the characteristic of ‘granulating’ in washes, similar to Ultramarine. Excellent permanence with low tinting strength and semi-transparent.
WARNING: Considerd Toxic if inhaled.
Emerald Green Emerald green is luminous by itself, bluish or yellowish green, highly permanent and would be very useful except that it is incompatible with sulphur colors such as cadmium yellow, vermilion and ultramarine. As an oil color emerald green dries well. Emerald green as a hue is more suited to impressionist, expressionist and abstract artwork and less suited for traditional landscape. Permanent with good tinting strength and opaque.
WARNING: Very toxic if made from Copper(II)-acetoarsenite. Modern versions are likely to be made by non toxic synthetic equivalents.
Indigo Prepared as an organic dye from the leaves of certain plants Indigo has good tinting strength but may fade rapidly when exposed to strong sunlight. Manufacturers tend to mix prussian blue with metal oxides as a substitute. It has a dark blue black hue that may be used in place of black. Permanent but may fade with direct sun and has a high tinting strength. Semi-transparent and non-toxic
Ivory Black was traditionally made from scraps of real ivory, and gave a beautiful fine pigment. However this is no longer responsible and today Ivory Black, or Pigment Black 9, is an inorganic synthetic pigment made from charred bones that offers a soft slightly grey black due to impurities. Slow to dry as an oil paint and should not be used for underpainting. Considered permanent with strong tinting strength and opaque. Non toxic.
Lamp Black is a type of carbon black obtained from the soot of burned fat, oil, tar, or resin. Lamp black is a soft brownish- or bluish-black pigment that is very stable and unaffected by light, acids and alkalis. Quick to dry and absorbs high amounts of oil. Considered permanent with strong tinting strength and opaque. Non toxic.
Manganese Blue is a synthetic green-blue pigment made by fixing barium manganate on a barium sulfate base. Manganese Blue was favored by fresco painters and artisans interested in tinting cement. However, it was found to be highly toxic and ingestion or inhalation could cause a nervous system disorder. Subsequently a difficult pigment to match for manufacturers with the inherent transparency of true Manganese Blue can only be re-created by using Zinc White to lighten the Phthalo blend’s value, then extending it further with a large dose of gel medium. The resulting glaze-like paint yields cool soft fields of color.
Excellent permanence with weak tinting strength and transparent.
WARNING: Toxic. Modern manufacturers attempt to match the original color with non toxic substitutes.
Payne's Grey is a blueish dark grey color made by mixing a blue and a black together, usually ultramarine and bone black, but it's particular hue will depend on the manufacturer's own blend. It can be used in place of black and is a favourite of watercolorists where washes have a bluish note. Excellent permanence with good tinting strength and opaque. Non toxic.
Phthalo Blue is a bright, intense blue that's very dark when used thickly. Used as a thin glaze it's very transparent. Mixed with white it's an opaque, beautiful sky blue. Phthalo blue is available in green and red shades. Excellent permanence with good tinting strength and transparent. Non toxic.
Phthalo Green is a synthetic organic medium dark green. A diverse colour capable of producing a vast range of useful colour mixtures from transparent subtle natural colours to strong opaque brilliant ones. For this reason it has become one of the most popular greens in use by artists today. Considered permanent with strong tinting strength and transparent. Non toxic.
Raw Sienna is similar to Ochre but differs in its iron oxide content. Raw Sienna's color can range from cool yellow taupe to warm orange. Many frescos have been painted with Raw Sienna throughout the ages. It is a staple of any artist's palette. Considered permanent with good tinting strength and semi-transparent. Non toxic.
Raw Umber is a dark brown obtained from natural earths colored by the oxides of iron and manganese. Useful in landscapes for deep shadowed areas and dark backgrounds with depth in portraiture. Considered permanent with medium/strong tinting strength and opaque. Non toxic.
Rose Madder is a natural pigment obtained from the Madder root. Rose madder is a transparent color that ranges from pale pink-red to a deeper red, depending on how the pigment is made and how thickly you use it. Slow to dry in oil. Semi permanent fades in sunlight with weak tinting strength and transparent. Non toxic.
Ultramarine Blue is a synthetic inorganic blue pigment. Rich and deep in colour. Commonly used in the painting of drapery for still life and portraiture. Good for seascapes. Slightly warmer than prussian blue but with less tinting strength. Considered permanent with medium/strong tinting strength and transparent. Non toxic.
Vermilion sometimes called Cinnebar, is a dense red mineral usually described as an intense reddish orange. It's vibrant colour can be used diluted with white for flesh tones or more intensely for floral and landscape painting. Considered semi permanent with good tinting strength and opaque. Harmful if swallowed.
Viridian or inorganic synthetic chromium is a non-poisonous, permanent color that replaced verdigris and emerald green as a glazing color by the turn of the 20th century. It is slightly cooler than Phthalo Green. Viridian as an oil paint is prone to cracking if one uses this transparent pigment too thickly. Good for winter landscapes and cold blue green water. Average drying time. Considered permanent with strong tinting strength and transparent. Non toxic.
Within some colours you will also find ranges of tonal value which the manufacturer will lable Light, Medium or Deep. These values are dependant upon the concentration of mineral within the medium and your selection will be based upon your requirements but note that those which are deep will have more tinting strength.
GENERAL ART TECHNIQUES
- Applying a Base Coat
- Choosing a Subject
- Colour II
- Creating an Abstract
- Dealing with Critics
- Developing A Painting
- Developing A Style
- Fat Over Lean
- Hue, Tone & Intensity
- Ten Rules for Classical Painting
- Aerial Perspective
- Drawing Trees
- Using Tone
- Basic Colour Palette
- Bristle Brushes
- Oil Paints
- MDF board
- The Camera
- Varnishing Artwork
- Complexity of Form
- Portrait Drawing
- Public Reaction
- Skin Tone