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Re: Question on Teaching Color Mixing


Date: Wed Nov 17 2004 - 06:45:21 PST

In a message dated 11/17/2004 12:00:42 AM Eastern Standard Time, writes:

> Im curious if anyone has any ideas or lessons they may have used before
> offering insight into how to teach high school or middle school level
> students about color mixing and color recipes etc for painting?

I am doing that right now with my Art 2's in H.S. Most know the color wheel
and warm and cool, analagous and complementary theories. In Art one, I devised
a set of handouts that they painted on and could only use the 3 primaries. I
believe here is only one effective way to learn color and it is like we did
in the University. Mixing, mixing, mixing! We don't have to go as far as the
Munsel Theory but simplify. For example, they learned that a yellow-orange is
that way because it has 2 parts more yellow than true orange, etc. It also
sharpened their observation to see temperature in colors.

Now in oil painting, I have introduced them to warm and cool tones of a color
. You also know that in oils we have more variety of colors within a color
group (i.e. reds). Yesterday, we took all the oil tubes out and did a color
chart in groups of reds, blues, yellows and greens. They had to observe and tell
me if a color was a warm or cool tone and if it was transparent or opaque. They
learned that the transparent colors were stronger and therefore LESS was
needed when color mixing.

 I showed them how a violet was brighter if they used a cool blue
(ultramarine) with a cool red (alizarine crimson) as compared with a cool blue with a
warm red (cadmium red). They learned which colors are neutral in temperature like
cobalt blue, perm. green lt. and paynes gray. From the color handout
exercises I did in Art I, last year, they thought the lessons were tedious YET they
all retained the information. I was surprised and delighted!

I am a true believer in basics and then the student has the tools to create
without limit. I realized that I could not play the guitar well until I learned
the chords. If I didn't learn those basics, I would have gotten frustrated
and given up. Now I can play any song without music. I now use this philosophy
in my teaching. That is what my Art 1 is all about --Foundations and I build a
strong one in all media. I love to see their faces when it all comes together
and it CLICKS!

Long live Art!! We do what we love to do! How lucky we are!!!!

Marsha (MarshArt) in Orlando