Limited palette artist colors painting landscapes in oils or acrylics.
Colors Painting Landscapes
The paint we use for painting landscapes in the wet on wet loose painting style is usually oil or acrylic artist paint which comes in tubes or plastic pots.
It is ‘artist paint’ but most colors we use are ‘student quality’.
So! look for ‘student quality artist paint’.
We use a limited palette of colors painting landscapes
The limited pallet means that you mix your colors so they will look natural and as seen in nature.
The paint should be creamy and not runny.
We learn more about colors and tones of colors later but for now we will see which colors you should try to have ready.
Don’t worry if you do not have all the colors.
It is more important to learn how to use the tools and you can do that with almost any colors painting landscapes.
The main thing is that your paint is not runny and not too thick.
The paint needs to flow off the brush in a thick layer.
List of Colours Painting Landscapes
White (Titanium white is ok) – Burnt umber – Prussian blue – Crimson – Warm red – Burnt sienna – Raw sienna – Warm yellow – Cobalt blue – Ultramarine blue – Indigo blue – Cobalt violet – Phthalo blue – Viridian green – Phthalo green – Indian yellow.
An ideal situation if you are a real beginner is to buy a tube of burnt umber and a bigger tube of white, both acrylic, and start painting. From there you can build your knowledge from the very foundations and as you add colors to your art box you can experiment and compare the different brands that are available to you.
In different brands of paint you will find variations in thickness of paint, strength of color, and the tones of the colors. You might note that if the name of a color has the word HUE after it, than that paint is a definite color.
You will also need – rags – a palette – somehow to steady and hold your painting.
Something to paint on – first choice is prepared artist canvas – prepared means primed ready to go (undercoated before you buy it – usually white)
All information about paints and colors is in this video.
Also on this video is information about mediums, varnish and thinnning your paint.
Here is the complete transcript for Colors Painting Landscapes video
A short tutorial video explaining the paints the colors and their uses.
Now we talk about paints and colors, I’ll give you a full list of the colors before we go much further.
There’s White, burnt umber, Prussian blue, cobalt blue, phthalo blue, ultramarine blue, violent, indigo, warm red, cool red, burnt sienna, raw sienna, viridian, phthalo green, warm yellow and Indian yellow.
The colors are the same for oils and acrylics. In fact the colors are the same for watercolor too, and you can follow along in watercolor or if you want to do it in color pencil even.
In most of the video lessons I will be using acrylic paint. I find it cheaper and much easier to clean up, the acrylic paints these days is very good quality.
Now seeing you are learning to paint and you’re learning to teach others to paint it’s not necessary to buy expensive paints. You should learn to use the student quality acrylics or oils.
There’s two colors you might need to buy in the artist quality and that would be phthalo blue and Indian yellow.
The full list of colors is quite a long list – you may not want to buy some the colors, you might not want to use the violet or the indigo blue, and you can get away with Prussian green or phthalo green rather than the viridian if you wish.
You can paint away for months in burnt umber and white, and if you do you’ll be very well rewarded because you’ll learn a lot about tones and you get very familiar with the brush strokes.
Prussian blue is another color that you can paint with in mono color, Prussian blue and white.
So let’s have a look at the colors.
White – titanium white for oils.
In acrylics the white is often labeled blanc or just white or titanium white.
Burnt umber – this is a strong dark brown, it always seem to be just right consistency when it comes out of the tube.
Prussian blue – Prussian blue is the color of the night sky, it’s very handy for painting moonlight scenes, it’s great to paint mono colors in, you do not have to have Prussian blue but it’s a handy color.
Cobalt blue – we use a lot of cobalt blue. This is for your distant mountains and we make the greys when we mix it with our crimson and we add a little bit of raw sienna, cobalt blue is often called cool blue.
Phthalo blue – (or phthalocyanine blue) is a very strong pigment and ideal for blending with the white for our midday skies. It is too strong to make greys with, if you try to mix it with other colors it becomes overpowering, so the phthalo blue is for our skies.
Ultramarine blue – we use for the color of a morning skies, ultramarine blue has a lot of red in it, it’s quite a warmer blue.
Violet – there’s quite a few different violets, I think cobalt violet is my favorite, if you wish to use the violet for your violet paintings or for painting jacaranda trees, pick a very strong violet.
Indigo – is more or less Prussian blue and black, it’s a good color to work with if you want to do some mono colors and if you want to paint a stormy sky. Indigo, like violet is not a hundred percent necessary in this course.
Warm red – is fire engine red, there is many warm reds. Cadmium red is probably the most common warm red. Vermillion is another warm red, quite common.
Cool red – is simply crimson – alizarin crimson is very common.
The crimson is for the background red and we mix it with the cobalt blue and a little bit of the raw sienna to give us the greys.
Burnt sienna – is a red, it’s an earthy red brown. We use it for painting in our roadways, the sun shining on the rocks, we put it in the bark of our trees and it looks good on the rusty roofs of sheds and houses.
Raw sienna – is a yellow, it’s a faded yellow that we use in the background, we use quite a lot of raw sienna, we use it for the base color for out distant greens.
Viridian – is a dark green, it’s the color of a leaf or foliage right in front of your face, and we don’t use this very often straight out of the tube, it’s just too strong a green, but it’s a great tint to put right through your painting and you can use it right through the background tones of green to the foreground tones of green and mix it in with your colors, just a little bit, it will give you the same tones right through your painting, this makes your painting look very natural.
Phthalo green – is a brilliant rainforest color green, it’s transparent, and looks great when you do mono color paintings with it.
Prussian green is very much the same.
Warm yellow – warm yellow is any yellow that is warm and you can tell it’s warm because it looks more like an orange than a lemon.
Cadmium yellow is possibly the most common warm yellow.
Indian yellow – this is the color of a golden wheat field in the sunlight.
Indian yellow is marketed under some other names some times. Art Spectrum the Australian paint manufacturer has an Indian yellow but they also have an Australian red gold which I prefer. Matisse has an Australian sienna.
So the colors you really need most of are the white, you need plenty of white, cool blue, crimson or cool red, warm yellow and raw sienna.
The next on your shopping list should be the phthalo blue and the Indian yellow.
So you can kick off with just a few colors but I think the burnt umber and white is the best to kick off with and practice away in the mono color paintings.
Mediums – someone might say to you, what medium do you paint in? It means, do you paint in oil paint or do you paint in acrylic paint.
And they say, what medium do you thin your paint with? Well, you can thin your oil paint with an oil painting medium and the water paints which is acrylic paint, you thin them with water.
Now, with your oil paint, I thin my paint with kerosene, I know it’s not traditional but it’s easy, it doesn’t smell so bad and it’s oily, it makes the paint nice and runny.
Now there’s a video also on how to thin your paint.
So medium simply means what you thin your paint with, turps or water.
Varnish – when you finish your paintings you may wish to spray them, I use an artist picture varnish, a matt varnish which comes in a pressure pack can.
I lay the painting flat on the ground face up, and I give it three or four or five coats of varnish by spraying from about two foot above it.
You can do this if you wish but I think you should wait until we get very good at our painting before we spend time worrying about that.
Now let’s have a look at brushes in the next video.
Before we go to brushes we can learn more about thinnning paint.
Go to – Mediums
by Len Hend