Color is a joy and it a large part of my interest in painting. Although I have used watercolors and acrylics, I am using oil paints almost exclusively now because they allow me to pre-mix paint strings for my main subject. That gives me better control since I don’t have to fix an ugly mix on the canvas—which sometimes just makes an even uglier mud color.
The time spent pre-mixing colors allows me to focus on developing my painting without being interrupted by the “process & procedure” of color mixing. I am a direct painter—no grisaille or complex underpaintings—so having the colors I want keeps me focused on how the painting looks.
I like to begin with a drawing. The head study below was first done on a paper bag. Next I pre-mixed some new skintone mixes I wanted to test out and used them in the painting on the right. The skintone mixes were done with mars orange, mars red, mars yellow, mars black, titanium white and ultramarine blue. I also used some pre-mixed neutral grays from Williamsburg Oils.