This section covers some topics that may be of interest to viewers
   curious about the painting process.   Parts may also be of interest to
   those just starting their art careers (or to experienced painters thinking
   of switching to water soluble oil paints).



             The Paints - Medium and Brands

Going Green:  While early work was done using several different paint-
ing mediums, Jim is currently concentrating on oil painting and using
the more environmentally friendly water miscible (mixable or soluble)
oils.   These clean up with soap and water and avoid the use of solv-
ents with their attendant environmental problems.   Water miscible oils
use the same kinds of pigments as regular oils.   They employ modified
oils (which allow the paint to mix with water as well as turpinoid, etc.).
Once the initial water content has evaporated, which occurs relatively
quickly, they act as traditional oils.   They can be mixed with traditional
oils, but if the latter are used in other than small portions, the mix must
be thinned/cleaned with traditional mediums/solvents.   Eight comp-
anies now produce water mixable oils.   For more information about
these paints and the range of colors available, search the Internet for
the following manufacturer's names.

                       Daniel Smith Water Soluable Oils
                       Grumbacher MAX Oils
                       Holbein Duo Aqua Oils
                       Reeves Water Mixable Oils (school packs)
                       Royal Talens Cobra Water Mixable Oils
                       Winsor & Newton Artisan Oils
                       Lukas Berlin Water Mixable Oils
                       Martin/F. Weber wOil Water Mixable Oils



                        Jim's Paint Colors
           An Expanded Split Primary Palette

A split primary uses "cool" and "warm" versions of each primary color.
For example, yellow a bit on the green or "cool" side (Lemon Yellow)
and a yellow a bit on the orange or "warm" side (Cad. Yellow Medium).
His colors are chosen from several brands of water soluble paints.



       Standard Use Colors                  Occasional Use Colors
Titanium White  (Artisan/Cobra)
Alizarin Crimson  (Artisan)
Pyrrole Red [1] (Cobra)
Cadmium Yellow Medium  (Artisan)
Lemon Yellow [2] (Duo Aqua)
French Ultramarine Blue  (Artisan)
Cobalt Blue  (Artisan)
Cerulean Blue  (Duo Aqua)
Yellow Ochre  (Artisan)
Burnt Umber  (Artisan)
Vermillion [3]  (Duo Aqua & Cobra)
Cadmium-Barium Orange [4]  (MAX)
Cadmium Yellow Light  (Artisan)
Phthalo Blue (RS) [5] (Artisan)
Phthalo Green (YS) [6] (Artisan)
Indigo  (Duo Aqua)
Payne's Gray  (Artisan)
Burnt Sienna [7] (Artisan)
           Jim's Comments on Some of the Colors He Uses:

My primary painting subjects are landscape and wildlife.   These colors
may not be sufficient or appropriate for other painting subjects.   Also,
I recently acquired a few Daniel Smith paint colors.   Using them may
change some of my current preferred color-brand choices.


[1]   Pyrrole Red replaces Cadmium Red Medium in my palette as it seems
       to have more "punch".   It does start to dry relatively quickly (on the
       palette developing an outer skin).   This can be a problem when paint-
       ing outdoors.

[2]   W&N Artisan paints are said to have a bit less pigment than some
       other brands.   When using Artisan Lemon Yellow in a color mixture,
       relatively large quantities of this color have to be used to get the
       desired results.   While much more expensive, Holbein Duo Aqua
       Lemon Yellow is much stronger.   To me its strength outways the cost.

[3]   Vermillion is a great for developing color tints for clouds (as is Yellow
       Ochre).   It is also useful for mixing Wyoming's red earth and rock
       colors.   The Cobra brand is a bit more orange than the Duo Aqua.
       Depending upon the subject and lighting, one may work a bit better
       than the other.

[4]   Most of the time I mix the secondary colors using my split primarys.
       Occasionally a painting will require a large amount of secondary
       color (such as orange in "Big Horn Lake Sunset").   In such cases
       it saves significant mixing time to use a secondary color.   One just
       has to be careful to vary that color to ensure the painting has plenty
       of "life".

[5]   Phthalo Blue and Lemon Yellow make a very strong, bright Viridian.
       In my experience this green is not very common in the Wyoming
       landscape.   However, it may be helpful in limited instances.   It is
       very useful in depicting the western Washington landscape.  

[6]   Phthalo Green has only been used by me in conjunction with Phthalo
       Blue and Alizarin Crimson.   This combination makes a very vibrant
       black, especially useful as background in astronomical paintings.   Mix
       three batches of these colors, with a different color slightly predomin-
       ating in each batch.   Apply these randomly to give the background        a feeling of great depth.  

[7]   For painting surfaces to be used outdoors I apply liberally thinned
       Burnt Sienna and use paper towels to wipe it off.   There should be
       just enough color remaining to cut the glare of the outdoor light on
       the canvas.   I use Cobra's water mixable glazing medium for thin-
       ning.   Panels so treated dry very quickly.


                   Is the Choice of Colors Critical?
          Perhaps Not As Critical As One Might Think

Four different sets of colors used by well established teaching artists
can be seen below.   Each artist used their own color set to make
paintings in the same area of Wyoming and each of their paintings
successfully reflected that locale.
Palette One:
Titanium White
Alizarin Crimson
Cadmium Red Lt
Cadmium Orange
Cadmium Yellow Lt
Perm Green Lt
Chrome Ox Green
Viridian
Ultramarine Blue
Cobalt Blue
Yellow Ochre
Transp Red Oxide
Burnt Sienna
Ivory Black


Palette Two:
Titanium White
Alizarin Crimson
Cadmium Red Lt
Cadmium Orange
Cadmium Yellow
Thalo Green
Ultramarine Blue
Yellow Ochre
Burnt Sienna


Palette Three:
White
Cadmium Red Med
Cadmium Red Lt
Cadmium Ylw Med
Sap Green
Viridian
Ultramarine Blue
Cobalt Blue
Cerulean Blue
Yellow Ochre
Raw Umber


Palette Four:
Titanium White
Alizarin Crimson
Cadmium Red Med
Transp Orange
Cadmium Yellow
Ultramarine Blue
Cobalt Blue
Cerulean Blue
Thalo Blue
Indigo
Yellow Ochre

                              The Studio

The garage takes up the only north-facing portion of the house.   So
the studio had to be installed without benefit of north light.   Adjustable
blinds and curtains are used to shield out direct sunlight from the two
small windows.   Painting light is provided by 5100K track lighting.

VIEW 1 - Main features (L to R): a comfortable chair, a kitchen cabinet
"taboret", a Richeson Best Santa Fe III easel, and a wet canvas rack
(Jim's own design).   Track lighting has been added since this picture
was taken.

       


VIEW 2 - Features (L to R): a framed-painting storage rack, computer
and photograph/slide scanning work areas, and art supply storage
shelves.

       


VIEW 3 - Features (L to R): storage cabinets with canvas stretching
work table and main painting area with the track lighting.   Adjustable
blinds keep direct sunlight off the painting area.

       



    Creating
   A Painting




             
             
             
             


    Over time additional
    topics may be added
    to this page.