Color Theory- Primary colors + Impasto


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We’re knee-deep in snow around here, and the kids are off from school for the third day in a row. I write this as Nerf bullets zip past my head and the kids scream in my ear. But at least they’re doing something other than letting their brains turn to mush in front of a screen, since that’s been a source of contention around here during the last few days.

I’m not complaining. Really, I’m not. I love the snow. I enjoy snow days. I’m not tired of winter yet. I get so much joy looking out my window at the gorgeous scenery outside. I know spring will come in due time. But I know many people struggle this time of year. The cold weather gets harder to endure. You hate to have to travel the snowy roads yet again. The warmth of sunshine on your shoulders seems so far removed and makes you heartsick. You think if you have to endure one more winter storm, or one more day inside with unruly kids, you will go stir crazy.

I’m here to bring you a little sunshine. It’s not the real thing, of course. But these photos of my little girl splashing in the pool are the closest thing I could get. Maybe these photos will help you to remember what summer days feel like, and you can remind yourself that summer days will surely come again. Just hold on a little longer!

I made this page as part of an assignment for the Color Theory class with Wilna Furstenburg over at Studio Calico. We’re focusing on primary colors, plus an Impasto technique for our first session.

Let me just say this. I am NOT a primary colors girl! I might use primary colors here and there as an accent. But having to choose just one primary color to work with on a page was really hard for me. I chose to use red, since it seemed to work best for the photos and supplies I had on hand to work with. Red is probably my least favorite of the primary colors. I prefer to use it sparingly. So this was a bit of a challenge. But that’s the whole point, right?

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I used Impasto in two different ways on this page, although it’s probably very difficult for you to see on your screen. Since my photos were pretty busy, I wanted to keep my background a little less cluttered. I opted to add a layer of thick, white gesso to my background paper before adding my die cut flower background. I didn’t use adhesive for the die cut background, but just pushed it into the gesso while it was still wet.

The other way I used Impasto is on my die cut title. I brushed on a thick layer of red paint, leaving lots of brush strokes.

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The background is subtle and really hard to see on the photos, but I like the white on white look in real life. I felt it was the best way to not overwhelm my photos. I could have just skipped the white gesso, but it does add a subtle hint of texture to the page that I really enjoy.

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When I began searching through my stash to find as many red embellishments as I could, I found that I didn’t have very many at all. Pink, yes! But not red. In fact, many of these red embellishments are some I’ve had for years and years. I just rarely buy anything red.

But it was such a fun exercise to dig through my stuff and pull out stuff in one color, and then figure out how to incorporate them onto my page. I think I would like to do that more often. Chose a color scheme to challenge myself to use, and then pull out everything I can find with that color scheme. If nothing else, it helps to find to more about my purchasing tendencies and my color preferences.

Are you taking Wilna’s class? I’d love to hear your thoughts on primary colors and/or the Impasto technique.

Hoping you have a beautiful, warm, cozy, and sunshine-y day!

One thought on “Color Theory- Primary colors + Impasto

  1. JeanD says:

    It’s a lovely page. I really like red as an accent with pale blue and lots of white. The background texture is great too. Nice and warm where I am, the last bit like of summer warmth, the leaves are just starting to change. It seems like the US has had an amazing amount of snow this winter, glad you’re enjoying it.

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