If You Want to Learn to Really See Color Try This.

If you want to learn to see and understand color there is no better training ground than learning to duplicating what you see in paint, pastels or colored pencils. It requires you to really see the color of things.  In fact, most artist spend as much time looking at what they are painting as they do actually putting marks on the canvas.

Colored pencil painting by Bonnie Auten, CPSAI enjoy the artistic process but since I don’t find as much time as I once did to paint on my own so I try to participate in a workshop or class at least a couple of times a year to keep my color “seeing” and color mixing skills sharp.  Knowing what color to choose for each stroke of the brush, pencil or pastel requires being able to see color and how it changes based on the colors that surround it, the colors that are reflecting upon it, and how the  light hits the surface.

The colors of an object is referred to as local colors.  Local color basically means realistic color or the color that is actually seen.  In art school a teacher might says to paint the local colors when she or he wants the students to render the colors as realistically as possible rather than take artistic license with the subject matter.

Irish Lock Colored pencil painting by Bonnie Auten, CPSA

Recently I attended a painting workshop with artist Bonnie Auten. I have admired Bonnie’s work and looked forward to picking her brain about how she paints and makes color choices.  The images above are a few of Bonnie’s paintings.  Read more »

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There Is No Such Thing As Bad Weather

The weather isn’t good or bad. Your choice of clothing may be good or bad but the weather just is. That is what my friend Berit once told me. She said that in Norway they don’t judge things like the weather they just accept them.

I’ve never been much of a weather watcher. I rarely pay attention to the forecast and my choice of clothing could sometimes be labeled “bad” if “weather appropriate” is the gauge.

Rain on Camelback Mountain

Often, I even forget to check the forecast when heading out of town. I just assume I generally know what to expect. When traveling to Scottsdale, Arizona as I did a few days ago, I expected pleasant and sunny with a chance of the need for a sweater early or late in the day.

I’d put my message out to the Universe asking for a few magical days to recharge and clear my head. I already was imagining walking in the desert, basking in sunshine, taking in colorful sunsets and breathing in the fresh air and wide-open space in between visits to the spa. It was a little gift I had given myself to celebrate the fabulous last year I’d had in my business.

Instead I got rain. From the moment I pulled my rental car onto the highway on Thursday evening until early afternoon on Sunday the rain never stopped. It slowed, and sputtered, and then started up again even harder than before. By noon on Friday with no end in sight I found myself wondering how I had ended up here on days with such bad weather for my little getaway.

Oops, had I just judged the weather? Guilty! I could hear Berit’s words in my head and felt her smirking. But come on. I had asked for a few magical days and I have just come to expect the Universe to deliver. So why was it raining? Read more »

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Color Marketing Group’s 2013 Color of the Year is Re-Blued!

Last week I participated in the International Color Marketing Group (CMG) meeting in the color-drenched South Beach area of Miami, FL. It was one of the best CMG summits I have attended.

The big news that came out of that meeting was how strong the color blue is going to remain for another year. In fact, Color Marketing Group predicts that Blue will dominate the color movement for a number of years. The number of different hues of blue represented across all CMG’s regional color forecasts is a key indicator of its importance.

Color Marketing Group’s
Color of the Year 2013

RE-BLUED

Color of the Year for 2013 RE-BLUED

What is driving the rise of blue? Blue is a stable, comfortable, and a well liked color that is always present in a color palette. Global/environmental issues regarding water and the political atmosphere are driving factors in the movement. Mineral blue pigment mines are becoming scarce. There is a push toward use and acceptance of synthetic blues which are cleaner, mineral blues more complex. The pricing of pigments is an issue.

Warmer, tropical, watery, blues with a touch of green dominate the movement. Blues are regarded as relaxing and calming, but when not careful with tone, they can become depressive and distant. Previous blues have been cleaner, more political, Olympic, and historical/traditional. Now people want warmer more aqueous blues. Blue is a popular color in many industries, but has met resistance in others. Blue is popular across ages and demographic- it is a reliable color. Our best color friend. Read more »

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Move Over Orange. There Are New Colors In Town!

Seeing a patch filled with bright orange pumpkins is such a cheerful sight that I look forward to at this time of year. In the past few years, a few other colors have elbowed their way into the patch and found their way into my heart. Brown, white, red and even blue skinned beauties join orange as options for fall decorating.

See some of my favorites in my post, ‘The Many Colors of Pumpkins’ on Wayfair.com

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Masskara: The Festival of Smiles

The MassKara Festival is a three week-long festival held each year during October in Bacolod City, the capital of Negros Occidental province in the Philippines.

The festival first began in the early 1980 when sugar prices dropped on the world market creating a crisis in the province where people relied on sugar cane as its primary agricultural crop.

With the price of sugar was at an all-time low people were already feeling depressedIt when on April 22 of that year, the inter-island vessel Don Juan carrying many Negrenses, including those belonging to prominent families in Bacolod City, collided with the tanker Tacloban City and sank. An estimated 700 lives were lost in the tragedy. Read more »

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