Watercolor: Glendale (and a video about Yellow Ochre pigments)

Glendale 7×9 Watercolor (sold)

Do you use yellow ochre in your watercolors? Is your pigment categorized on the Color Index as PY43 (natural pigment yellow iron oxide) or PY42 (synthetic yellow iron oxide)? Yellow Ochre pigment is the oldest paint on the planet. It was used in prehistoric times, and it’s still used today to create warm, organic golds, yellows and mixes of earthy rich & complimentary hues. Here’s a six minute primer video (below) about yellow ochre, with sample mixes, and a few watercolors from artists in history that featured earthy & ochre hues. If you don’t see the window below, you can watch the yellow ochre video here.

Art Quote
At present I absolutely want to paint a starry sky. It often seems to me that night is still more richly colored than the day; having hues of the most intense violets, blues and greens. If only you pay attention to it you will see that certain stars are lemon-yellow, others pink or a green, blue and forget-me-not brilliance. And without my expatiating on this theme it is obvious that putting little white dots on the blue-black is not enough to paint a starry sky.
~Vincent van Gogh

4 thoughts on “Watercolor: Glendale (and a video about Yellow Ochre pigments)”

  1. I don’t know if all art schools did it, or even if they still do it, but back in the day they used to take freshmen art students to a local stone quarry and have them dig up samples to take back to school and make their own paints. If cavemen had the technology to do it, modern man should be able to also. Nice video.

    1. Hi Tom, Thanks for leaving a comment. I think if an art school is close to an iron oxide mine, it would be wonderful to collect raw pigment and make it into useable paint, but there are few places left (it’s used in animal feed, fertilizers, construction materials as well as colorants), so I wonder if they allow the public access? There’s one in Virginia, and one in Georgia, I think, and the biggest supplier importing it here is from China [36K metric tons], so that’s one heck of a field trip. 🙂

  2. As usual, Belinda, you’ve shown yourself to have a most generous and inspiring art-spirit. I always learn from your posts, videos, quotes. Thank you so much for sharing your work and what you’ve learned in the making of it!

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