from the upcoming book
NEWBERRY COLOR THEORY
Integration —The Secret to Great Color
Copyright © 2021 by Michael Newberry
4 San Onofre: Pink
I am reading and re-reading your analysis of light and color and thinking about how to apply these theories, the works you are creating are lovely to look at and to think about.
Robin Purcell, Artist
Newberry, San Onofre: Pink, 2020, pastel, 18×24 inches
For many artists and people looking at a landscape, they only see the color of things such as beige sand and blue sky. But when painted that way, the painting takes on an oversimplification. This color theory dives deeper by incorporating the properties of depth, form, and light. In visual perception, the sand isn’t just the color it is, but it is a result of rather complex interactions of factors. Taking my color theory approach facilitates the complex transition from reality to paper.
This piece has a pink atmosphere, light green highlights, rust shadows, blue distance, and warm orange foreground. The sky is a combo of blue, pink, pale-green, and rust, which creates a dusty warm violet. The sand is beige mixed with an orange foreground, pale-green light, pink, and rust darks, resulting in a powerful warm color. The white crest of the wave is made up of light green highlights with pale pinkish shadows (green and pink are opposites). This contrast gives a jewel-like sparkle to the waves.
It is complicated, but the fun and exciting part is when working with the color theory some magic happens, the colors take on a vibrancy of life, with enough nuance to keep your eye actively engaged. When I see the white-green highlights of the waves and then adjust to the pink-violet sky, I feel a satisfaction of an elegant solution to a sensory problem. The results are immediate and excite me to keep going and to try new combinations.
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