Combining pink and blue
These two colours are a fantastic combination but only if you use them properly. I find the difficulty lies in using the correct ratios of each one and being very careful to stop them forming a grey, sludgy mess.
The way round that is to be meticulous with your planning, careful with your preparation and quick to react to subtle changes in material behaviour as the painting develops.
I always knew what the shape was going to be, I understood where all the white and cream was going to go and, most importantly, I worked out how much pink and blue I was going to use.
Be careful Ed!
So far so good. Taking care mixing the right colours of paint was even more critical than normal because of the amount of white that was kicking around.
White has a tendency to pick up random colours from nowhere that leaves you with a white that has hints of other colours in it. That was definitely NOT on the cards for Cloud 10. Careless splashes and drips were to be controlled.
I wanted the bulk of the white and cream to remain as pure as possible until it hit the outer reaches of colour; even then I had to be careful with the blending. Enamel paints are difficult to blend in gradients but I’ve pulled it off.
Reaching the important bit
The entire success of this abstract painting lies with the delicate hints of pink. If you cover that central part with your hand, and then look at the rest of the canvas, you’ll see what I mean.
In fact, the whole concept for the painting was based solely around that small area of pink in the centre. I could write all day on the subject of focal points and colour interaction but I’ll save you from that for now; instead let me simply say that the placement, and quantity, of pink make the painting what it is.
Everything else plays a supporting role.
The role of black and white
If you think about these two colours for a moment you begin to realize that they are the tones that give the painting its grounding. They very much form the foundations for the playfulness of the others.
The largest concentrations of black form into three areas – with the centre and small corner features being the ones that carry the movement and, to a certain degree, the tension. Suggesting two points that are reaching out but never able to touch each other.
The white and cream provide space and light amongst the drama of the other colours. Everything needs room to breathe and there are a million way to do that.
In this particular painting I chose the calmer, more thoughtful route. I’m glad I did too as it’s resulted in a delightfully uplifting painting that’s inspired me to do more like this.
Watch this space.
- Canvas: Polyester 340gsm
- Preparation: One coat of primer, one additional skim coat
- Paints: Enamel paint (9 colours) made to my own recipe
- Frame: 44mm Museum graded floating frame with 8 tensioning corner wedges.
- Hand-stretched and stapled on the reverse