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Friday, August 22, 2014

Graydon Parrish Workshop - Munsell Color System for Beginners


Last year I took the beginner's Munsell Color Theory workshop.  We spent 5 full days delving into all the colors on our palette to see where they live in color space and created a top notch color wheel.

The munsell color system looks at color based on Hue (colorant or color), Value (light to dark) & Chroma (intensity or how far a color is from neutral gray).  We used munsell color chips to mix and match the exact colors we wanted, in this case the highest chroma hues that can be mixed in paint.

Each Hue has a different value of chroma that can be reached and mixing high chroma colors is no easy task! Graydon is such a patient & amazing teacher that he made 5 days of mixing color actually fun and quite exciting.
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Check out Wikipedia for a full explanation of Munsell.

Munsell Color Chart
This is how my color chart looked at the end of the workshop.  I had initially only signed up for 5 days but was lucky to be able to sneak back for an extra two days to finish up my wheel.  It may seem like a long time to make a color chart but I learned so much from mixing each high chroma color on the wheel and plotting all of my tubes of paint on the chart to see where they are in the color space. 

Learning this system has made me much more mindful when mixing my colors and painting.  It has saved me a great deal of time and paint as I am able to mix more accurately the correct value and chroma that I am after before I start painting so I can just paint and have fun rather than mixing on the fly.


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