before sizing up the quality of the paints in my box.
They were poor according to Michael Wilcox, founder of The School of Colour and author of The Artist's Guide to Selecting Colours, a book highly recommended by Richard Schmid. My mistake was I never, ever, turned the tube over and read the label. Why would I? I had no clue as to what those numbers meant. I just wanted the color, I wanted. I was an uninformed shopper. No more.
As the chemistry of painting grounds affects the longevity and the look of our work, so does the chemistry of our paint. I don't know about you, but I was a C student in high school chemistry. At that time in my life, I didn't know that any chemistry interested me. After years spent in architectural design and construction, I realize that I am as interested in the sound construction of a painting, as I was in the sound construction of homes. I believe structures of paint or wood and brick should be soundly built from the ground up or clients get mad at you.
|In the beginning, I bought these mediums to try.|
Now, I don't know.
We all know by now how unstable Alizarin Crimson is so we've been buying the tube marked "Permanent." But how permanent is it? Do we really know the paintmaker corrected the chemistry and didn't just add the word to make us feel more secure so we'll keep stocking up? We don't--not unless we understand the writing on the back of the tube. Wilcox, a chemist, doesn't like any of the Alizarins. He prefers the much more stable chemistry of Quinacredone violet and red. He has other preferences too in the other color families and tells you the science of each one and why he recommends one color over another.
Where once I stared out the window of my chemistry class bored to death, familiarizing myself with the science of color (light) and paint grabs my interests. I am spending way too much money on paint to buy junk. Now, what about those painting mediums? Both Schmid and Wilcox say use the paint right out of the tube and don't mix it with anything.