Karin Wells is an artist of amazing versatility. She graduated with honors from both the New England School of Art and Design, Boston, 1965, and the Butera School of Art, Boston, 1986. Karin has enjoyed a career as an award-winning graphic designer, illustrator and sign painter. She also taught Life Drawing and Painting for many years. She has most recently studied for three years at The New England School of Classical Painting in Greenfield, New Hampshire, under the direction of Numael Pulido.
To expand her craft, Karin has traveled throughout Europe studying the Old Masters. Her art reflects the deep influence of these great works. Karin demonstrates a remarkable facility for likeness and for the use of light.
The artist is a member of The American Society of Portrait Artists, Portrait Society of America, The Portrait Society of Atlanta, and The Copley Society of Boston.
To learn more about Karin and to view more of her amazing work, be sure to visit her website and blog by following the links below:
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How Ivory Black + White = Blue
With the “Earth Palette” I can use a mixture of Ivory Black and Titanium White to make what appears to be the color blue. When using an earth palette, this mixture does NOT make gray, really! All of the so-called “blue” in my paintings are made from this and you can see it in the examples below.
In fact the blue from an Ivory Black and White mixture is so “electric” I often need to tone it down by adding some reds and/or yellows.
If I wish to deepen and enrich an area of this mixture of “blue,” I could glaze a little French Ultramarine or Prussian Blue over it….but rarely, if ever, need to do this.
None of the examples below have any glazed colors to make the blues look bluer – they are all a black/white mixture – and most have yellow or red added to calm it down.
The drapery behind the figure is purely black + white. The black/white mixture in the sky is cut with raw umber and raw sienna.
I added a little red into these black and white mixtures to get a blue that is a bit on the purple side.
The sky is basically black and white with some reds added for warmth near the horizon line. I darkened and slightly neutralized the blue at the top of the canvas so as not to draw the eye upwards.
Again, the black/white mixture needed to be cut with raw sienna because it was much too bright for a background.
I began the blue checkered tablecloth by mixing a thin glaze of French Ultramarine + Ivory Black to sketch in a pattern of checks over a plain white painted cloth underneath.
When it was dry, I matched the paint value with the black/white mixture and covered it up in order to create the ilusion of a blue checkered tablecloth.
Of course, the shadow areas were a darker black/white mixture with raw sienna added for warmth (shadows are supposed to be warm).
Take a peek at my black & white sky at:
With this particular earth palette, I cannot paint a landscape and make a sky look “natural” if I use any blue paint on my canvas.
When I was learning to paint, I copied the Old Masters – I especially learned most of what I know from Vermeer. I quickly learned that I was unable to duplicate the colors unless I eliminated the blues.
Vermeer and the Old Masters didn’t have any proper blue they could afford on a daily basis, so they did their best with what they had. Have they had any decent blue they would have made good use of it. So remember this: you don’t follow your predecessors by doing what they did, you follow them by seeking what they sought.