Playing with Greens

The other day, I came across an interesting article on Artistsnetwork.com about creating the colour green.  It explained how mixing different hues and tones of blues and yellows create various green shades.  Well that is obvious, but how many actually ever put that to practice and really notice it?  It was a very informative read.  And so I decided to experiment it myself!

Colour Swatches

In my experiment, I used Dylusions acrylic paint.  I just like the various pretty blues the paints come in so chose Periwinkle Blue (a cornflower light blue), London Blue (bright blue) and After Midnight (dark navy blue).  Lemon Zest was used for the yellow for its brightness.  As you can see in the first three rows, I mixed the yellow with the various blues, and see what varieties you find!  The next step was to check out the intensity.  I took some green paint (Fresh Lime) and mixed it with the yellow (Lemon Zest).  So if you want a lighter green, always use yellow rather than white which would just give you an icy pastel shade.  I also grabbed some blue (London Blue) and mixed it with the the Fresh Lime for a darker shade of green.  As such, adding more blue would darken the green.  And finally, if you want to neutralise the green or create some brown, use a red which is a complementary colour.  Here I used Cherry Pie as the red.

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Putting it into Practice

And now comes the exciting part.  Painting a piece using these greens!  Plants and trees or landscape is good but I wanted to make something cute out of them of course.  The first thing that came to mind when thinking of green is frogs!  To utilise the green more, I got the frogs to stand on some plants.  The pencil sketch:

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Going Green

For paper, I used Canson’s Mixed Media (160 gsm).  Happy with the pencil sketch, I proceeded in colouring it all in, giving careful thought as to which green went where.  Mama Frog was a mixture of Lime Green and Lemon Zest, and Baby Frog was from Lime Green and London Blue just to demonstrate how the same green could produce a different intensity according to adding more yellow or blue.

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I continued painting with the five different permutations of green I had created.  Can you see which green is from what mixture?  And as for the browns for the eyes and mouth, I combined the Lime Green with Cherry Pie.  Now you can see how that brown blends well with the rest of the painting with all the greens!  And not only is it in green harmony, but it’s also kawaii!

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And this was such a fun experiment!  Mixing two different primary colours of blue and yellow in different shades to create various kinds of greens.  The article from which I got this idea focuses on green, but it would be cool to create different forms of purple and orange too!  Just playing more with the colour wheel and creating a cute painting out of it makes artwork so much more exciting.

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