Print Munsell color with your printer - PDF

Munsell Color Charts PDF to print at Home

“Thank you for making this product available,it’s very useful!” Florent Farges – www.florentfarges.com Color references are often very pricey. In my blog post “Save hundreds on studio equipment!” I showed you how I made my own color charts. In the end this can literally save you hundreds of (insert your currency here). And in “Mixing Neutrals” I showed how I made a neutral value scale based on my Munsell color chips from the Munsell Student book. In the blog post “Munsell 101 for the Artist” I explain … Read more

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Instructional Video “Portraits in the Wild” by James Gurney

I find portraits the most challenging subjects since you need to capture the likeness of the person whereas a tree is always a tree. To paint a particular person you need to take extra care. On business fairs I drew many many portraits using smartphones or tablets with a pressure sensitive stylus pen. With modern technology you not only have an Undo functionality but also other effects which help you to be faster and create effects of different appearance. But the videos by James Gurney … Read more

Save hundreds on studio equipment! Color charts on a budget

Save 781.50€ on studio equipment!…..What? Recently I talked about the Munsell color system which in brief is a system based on the three qualities of color – hue, value and chroma which helps you in judging color. As an artist you will need to know what colors to mix for your subject and which paints to choose to mix these specific colors. And here comes a color catalogue in handy. While there are some painters who have the Munsell Book of Color* the old masters only … Read more

Instructional video by Douglas Flynt

I recently wrote about Scott Waddell’s new instructional video “Drawing & Painting” and considered it as very valuable since it is packed with lots of information. Two days later I found Douglas Flynt’s instructional video which somehow went under my radar since it is available for over 2 months now. With $39.95 (~29€) for 74 minutes it is about the same as Scott’s video. And it has the same information density – if not even more! I also wrote about the Munsell color system recently … Read more

Munsell 101 for the artist

Color theory – a little physics for the artist For me color theory was always a boring topic. With my background as a lab technician I knew about the wavelengths of light and how the eye perceives color. But this did not help me learning to see and mix color. But here are the basics: There are different types of color models and most of them are organized in a circle. Color is a visual sensation of electro magnetic waves. The eye is the organ that … Read more

Don’t play with the food!

So you have not enough money to attend a portrait painting class or hire someone to pose for you? But you’d really like to learn to paint skin tones? Well, I guess you have enough money to buy some bread. Bread is a very good alternative to painting skin tones. See these Google search results on “bread” – the colors are in the orangeish hue family and – depending on the bread – not too chromatic. This tip comes from William Whitaker. You should give … Read more

Review – Scott Waddell’s new instructional video “Drawing & Painting”

I’ve written about Scott Waddell before (see here). On December 17th he has published another video for purchase. The price of 37$ (~27€) is very generous! You’ll get over 70 minutes of video material plus an additional PDF which serves as a glossary, materials list and time code table. Normally I post free stuff that I find in the internet but buying some professional instructional videos will help you a lot too – with your art training and with saving money on expensive art classes. … Read more

Mixing Munsell neutrals

Having some neutral values at hand is very handy. You can use them for a value scale or to mix with higher chroma colors (of the same value) to make them more neutral. If you have problems judging the value of a high chroma color squint your eyes. I’ve got the Munsell student book*, and it contains the Munsell neutrals scale. But the problem with the matte chips from the book is, that you can not place paint dabs onto it and whipe it off … Read more

Advices from a professional artist

In 2006 I was happy to find an artist near where I live who has attended a classical atelier in Florence. Born in Jugoslavia, artist Michael Milosevic, who lived in Canada for a long period of time and then moved to Florence to study at the Angel Academy of Art now lives in Bad Homburg which is about 30 kilometers away from Frankfurt where I live. In 2010 I worked on a still life at his studio under his guidance: Recently I visited him again … Read more

Squint your eyes!

Squinting helps us to seperate the lights from the darks and allows us to see larger relationships. You’ll need that for judging composition, values and shapes. If you want to judge the value of a given color you’ll sometimes have a hard time doing so because color distracts us from the value. But when you squint your eyes, the color will fade just enough to be able to judge the value. Values at both ends of the value scale – white and black – and … Read more

Do not save on the wrong things

I recently received an oil paint set with 12 different colors as a gift. This set of tubes was sold at a very low price for around 3€ so I was curious about the paint’s quality and as I expected, the quality is very low. Although this blog is also about saving money with your classical art studies I don’t recommend these types of paint. Because if you save on the wrong things you’ll propably pay twice. Maybe these paints are sufficient for making color exercises … Read more

Free Alla Prima portrait painting demonstrations

There are hundreds of instructional videos and painting demonstrations for purchase on the web and I don’t want to question their use. They are mostly narrated and good ones also show the palette and the colors that are used throughout the painting process. For example Cesar Santos’ video (LINK) is a very good one with hours of instruction. Also Scott Waddell’s instructional videos are very excellent and I like them very much (I wrote about it here). But there is also a lot of free … Read more

The white of an eye is not white!

A mistake a lot of beginners make is to draw or paint the image that they have in their mind instead of replicating what’s in front of them. But painting a realistic image means to replicate reality and not a stereotype image. Look closely and learn to transfer it to the canvas. Here is a little example: This is one of my first attempts in painting many, many years ago. You can see – besides all the other mistakes I have made – that I … Read more

Trip to Amsterdam

Amsterdam is a great city – not only for the regular tourist but also for art lovers. Since Holland has a long tradition in classical art you’ll find many places with beautiful paintings – not only in the museums but also in little galleries close to the Rijksmuseum. The Rijksmuseum will reopen after renovation on April 13th so this time I did not go there. Instead I walked around the area opposite to the Rijksmuseum – the Spiegelkwartier. Unfortunately I wasn’t allowed to take pictures inside the … Read more

Low budget glass palette

You propably know the traditional wooden palettes that artists use – on one hand they hold their brushes and on the other is a wooden palette resting on the forearm, secured by the thumb through a hole. Read on and learn about the advantages of a Glass Palette and how you can get one for little money. There are certain disadvantages with these hand held wooden palettes: Color: The color of wood is not neutral therefore all your mixed colors will be influenced by this. … Read more

Closer than close: Google Art Project let’s you see all the details

Taking a close look at a painting is teaching you a lot! Most often we see the paintings as a whole – if it is in a book or on our monitor – and we are amazed about the beautyful painting and wonder how the artist has achieved such detail. But if you come very close to a painting you can see the artist’s brushwork and learn how certain details are built up. A Google seach on high res pictures of your favorite painting will … Read more

Curd soap: cheap and healthy alternative to harming solvents for cleaning brushes

I rarely use turps or other solvents since they smell disgusting and they really are a risk of health. For painting I just use it occasionally for staining my canvas. So my can of rectified turpentine leads an orphaned life. A lot of oilpainters use these aggressive solvents to clean their brushes with – and it’s easy to clean brushes with solvents – that’s for sure! But the downsides of the smell, the health risk and also the price let’s me make use of a … Read more