Thursday, June 10, 2010

Caucasian Flesh Tone Paint - WASTE

One of the worst colors that most oil paint manufacturing companies offer is premade caucasian flesh tone. Granted this is a nice option when starting out mixing colors, but what colors are you really using? Perhaps the mix is more on the warm side of the color scale and adding the wrong blue might leave you with muddy, dirty colors that are flat and weak. When painting human skin, it is best to mix your own. Don't waste money on the premade stuff, here are the basic pigments found on most palettes that I use while making skin tones:

   cad. yellow med.
   yellow ochre
   flake white (warm white)
   cad. red light
   burnt umber & sienna
   ultramarine blue

For light flesh tones, start with flake white adding the yellows and a bit of red, using the burnt browns as shadows and blues to cool the color down if it gets "too warm." Medium tones can start with the yellows, adding white only to the highlights. Dark flesh tones use only the burnt browns, red, and blue. Typically, I try to stay away from any black in my work to keep from flat paintings. The best way to figure out which color mixes work best for you is to actually do it. Yes, oil paint might be expensive, but without trial and error you'll never get any better! Jump in, try it yourself!

-Joshua Grabowski

No comments: