Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Tools of the Trade: Palette - Mixing

I switched a few years ago to using a Masterson Sta-Wet palette for my acrylic paints. When I discovered its existance it was a huge revelation to me. It has saved me a lot of money in unwasted paint. Prior to this, I used to mix my paint on an ever increasing mountain of dried paint on a cardboard palette.

What you see above is my palette at the end of the life of the insert paper. I have to throw it away, rinse the sponge and prep a nice new piece of palette paper. I will then add fresh daubs of paint.

I always place my paint in the exact same spots. I like the mixing of colours to be as effortless as putting on a turn signal when driving a car. You take it for granted that the signal is in the same spot everytime you reach for it. Same goes for my palette.

I think this comes from so many years of mixing the same variations of colour. I know how much space I'm going to require for my favorites. I have minor players on my palette put in between the premier hues that require adjustments from thier neighbours.

This order is so comfy and familiar to me, I often find my brush already mushing about the paint before I properly look to make sure it landed in the right spot. That is a lot easier to deal with a mistake than my other favorite mishap: cleaning my brush in my tea. I'm sure my esophagus has a thin acrylic paint lining from all the times I discovered too late what I did to my beverage.

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