THE COLOR, TONE & VALUE SAGA

THE COLOR, TONE & VALUE SAGA

Avant Garde - One of the four themes in The Mansion at Sofitel Macau

Avant Garde – One of the four themes in The Mansion at Sofitel Macau

Last week Jack and Jill were in a muddle with their choice of a dark paint color. To get out of their jam, they called in a professional. They knew the eggplant color had an edge, but they didn’t know how to use it. The designer explained how color, tone and value can work to their advantage. Together they created an environment that fit their lifestyle.

Dark colors, like eggplant, black and rich dark-chocolate brown can be a brilliant backdrop for art, furnishings, upholstery and more . . .  simply by contrast and color. You can see how the light colors pop against the dark walls in the picture above. Any room can be painted in dark colors–living rooms, kitchens, bedrooms, bathrooms, family rooms. These dark colors are not new, they have been used forever. Dark wood walls, beams, wood floors  and furnishings were all used in the early centuries.

All the paint manufacturers have rich dark colors, Benjamin Moore, Sherwin Williams, Farrow & Ball all make quality paints. Sometimes, although you’ve chosen a dark color, it takes two coats to cover the paint on the walls to get the cover and depth those tones create. So how do you do this? Houzz, a popular site filled with design and decorating information has the answers with pictures: Here’s the link for you.

Last week’s blog talked about tonal distribution, and according to Ethel Rompilla’s and the New York School of Interior Design, Color for Interior Design, tonal distribution is a fundamental principle that goes back to the earliest interiors with the concept of nature’s distribution of tonal values. We feel more comfortable in a room with a light ceiling, medium walls, and dark floors, which parallel the tonal values of the sky, trees and earth. Understanding that, there are numerous variations and exceptions to the theory–like the walls of the black bedroom at Boscotrecase, and the still popular dark wood paneling in traditional rooms seen in the early centuries. In the 1960s to today, we love the variations of the dark walls and lighter floors in contemporary spaces.

This week we are also addressing chromatic distribution. A second general rule follows nature’s distribution of vivid color in its accessories, such as birds and flowers, and is also allied to Munsell’s theory that strong colors should not overpower weaker ones. The guideline states that the largest areas of a room, such as floor, walls and ceiling, should be the most neutral. As size is decreased chromatic value can be increased. Furniture or draperies can be brighter, and small upholstered items or accessories and other accents can be the most chromatic. Many successful interiors break this rule, but you should be aware that there is a chromatic range on walls in which, depending on the light, an intense color can become intolerable.

To be continued . . .

Other news . . . My publisher, Soul Mate Publishing, has  blogger hosts C.D. Hersh, featuring my book, Indigo Sky, on their Friday, April 29, 2016 blog. I would be honored if you visit and comment. Here’s the link: http://wp.me/p1tsn7-16j

THE BARN

THE BARN

Montana barn

Montana barn

Barns are simple structures of basic post and beam construction. I love barns, I love barn shapes, and barn roofs.  I love to paint barns . . . on canvas that is. Barns not only keep animals, but are large enough to invite friends, family and all your neighbors and have a barn dance, a wedding, or become a quirky,  marvelous architectural space. Some folks live in barns.

Barns are sometimes a large shed used for storing vehicles. It’s been said that a barn is a large and unattractive building. Buildings are sometimes referred to as a barn of a house. Is a barn the same as a stable? Wasn’t Jesus born in a barn, or was it a stable? Do you think they are the same? Barns are also known as a large building for storing grain, hay or straw and housing livestock. And tools, lots of tools. barn inside w. tools barn montana elevator barn smiles barn traditional  barn w. clothes barn w. roof shapes barn w.horse wind gauge barn w.horse barn w.red tree 747cdae123ad7d1447282a0d4fa3fe77 barn w.storm barns and cowsSquare dances are fun in a barn. Which barn would you like to see me paint? Do you like barn paintings? Do you have a barn you love? Here’s more for your viewing pleasure. Which one is your favorite?mtnplay_dancers2

CRAZY 4 COLOR

CRAZY 4 COLOR

Ugly green house

This could happen to you. Elsa and Bob chose what they thought would be the perfect color for the exterior of their house. They wanted green.The sample was one of those one-inch sizes, but just to be sure they liked the color, they got a larger sample, four inches. Perfect.

They left the job in the hands of a pro painter, and went on vacation. Have you figured out the end of the story? Returning, the limo dropped them off in front of a house. “This isn’t ours, do you have the right address?” Turns out this green house, lime green, or something similar, couldn’t be, but yes, it was theirs alright. The house was bright, really bright, green, of some kind, screaming. They rushed into the house and immediately called their pro painter.

Benjamin Moore Wythe Blue for porch ceiling & shutters, white house.

Wythe Blue, this time they chose a soft color, almost neutral, for the porch ceiling and shutters, enhanced with a Forest Green front door, together with a brilliant white for the house. Imagine this gorgeous porch behind those unsightly bushes.The bushes have to go, and with new landscaping the house will be handsome. And yes, their painter charged them. You don’t think he would repaint for free, did you? His time is valuable. This happens often. That’s why the paint companies make small jar samples. So you could paint one whole big surface for color practice. That’s one solution, but what you need to know is that those small samples don’t give you the whole truth. You see, color gets stronger and brighter as the area you are painting gets bigger.

This color is a really important subject. You can’t cover it with a couple of paragraphs, but I will give you some ideas that will enlighten you.

Area subdivisions are:
Dominant Areas: Walls, floor and ceiling.
Medium Areas: Draperies and large pieces of upholstered furniture, bed-covers, etc.
Small Areas: Small upholstered furniture, chair-seats, pillows, etc.
Accent: Piping, welting or fringes on draperies and upholstery, lamp-bases or shades, books, plants, flowers, etc.

There are fancy names for color schemes, like monochromatic, analogous and complementary.

You’ll need the color wheel as reference.

Itten color wheel

 

 


A color wheel or color circle is an abstract illustrative organization of color hues around a circle that shows relationships between primary colors, secondary colors, complementary colors, etc.

Monochromatic color scheme

Monochromatic Schemes:  One color in various shades and tonal values (light to dark). Using the subdivisions: The dominant areas (walls, floor and ceiling) of a room are different in tone, of the same color. This system has great unity, and great dignity, but has enough variety to maintain interest. Variety can be obtained by introducing changes both in tonal value and brightness (chromatic values). The brightest for throw pillows and accessories.

Complementary color scheme

Complementary Scheme: Opposite colors in the color wheel cover the dominant and medium areas. In this scheme a more agreeable harmony will be attained if each color is slightly tinged with another and the same color.  Such as red with some yellow as in russet, in combination with a green also slightly tinged with yellow as in green citron. If the red is on the blue side, as in red-mulberry, the green should also be on the blue side as in green-slate. The same should be applied to the other complementary schemes and the proper colors may be easily selected by reviewing the color wheel. Of course, remember your distribution as mentioned in subdivisions.

Mark Rothko Analogous painting

Analogous Scheme: Any three adjoining hues in a twelve color wheel, or any three of six adjoining colors in a wheel of twenty-four. To have the greatest unity in this scheme, limit the color of the wall to one color and repeat in small areas elsewhere. Remember your subdivisions and the distribution of tone and brightness.

Does this information give you some insight? What have you gained from this post? Are you inspired to do some coloring, in your house?

Edward Hopper painting – can you figure out which color scheme he used for this famous work?

QUEST TO FIND YOUR OWN WAY

QUEST TO FIND YOUR OWN WAY

I thought passion pushed the artist. A gargantuan gut tumult right in the center of your body and words whirling in your head.

Threads of Wisdom by Gail Ingis Claus 36x36 Oil on canvas

“I must paint, I must write, I must sing. The drive is all consuming.

In last Sunday’s April 22, Connecticut Post, was the article, Art, religion collide in ‘My Name is Asher Lev.’ The article addresses the Chaim Potok novel “My Name is Asher Lev.” It tells the story of a Jewish boy determined to pursue a life in the world of modern art despite the opposition of his parents and the New York City religious community within which his family lives.

Potok set the novel in a very specific time and place, but the tale of a son having to battle his father to find his own way in the world has resonated with readers of all faiths since the book was first published in 1972.

Asher’s deeply religious father is puzzled and then outraged by his son’s fascination with drawing – from a very early age – ultimately forcing the boy to choose between his religion and his passion for art.

Hasidic praying in the Synagogue on Yom Kippur

You don’t have to be Jewish or an artist to identify with Asher’s quest to be his own man and the result is a coming of age classic that has been added to many high school reading lists over the years.

My issue with this article are the words “quest to be his own man.” The passion to do art and the quest to be your own person are two separate issues. Writers must write, painters must paint, sculptors must sculpt. But growing up, finding your way in the world, the quest to be your own person is part of life. I am an artist, I must paint, I must draw, I have a quest to do art in some form, design, create, fill the negative space, but I am still finding my own way.

The recent stage adaptation, written by Aaron Posner, will be receiving its Connecticut premiere at Long Wharf Theatre in New Haven, Starting May 2.

Hasidic with Shawls

“It’s a universal story. It’s about Hasidic Jews and a painter, but I think  you could substitute almost anything you want,”

Actor Ari Brand

actor Ari Brand said of the way so many diverse people have related to the Potok tale for the past 40 years.

“The stronger the pull of the parents and the stronger the pull of a child’s passion, the greater the conflict,” Brand said of the battle so many young people have to go through over their career paths.

The quest to find your own way is a lifelong ambition. So tell me, are you still finding your own way? How, where, why?

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