Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - student project

 **UPDATE** 1/24/19 - 2 more swatch cards (hopefully the last ones!): Hansa Yellow Deep and Transparent Red Oxide.

I wanted to replace my Indian Yellow from M. Graham, because I wasn't a fan of the brownish tinge the color had at full strength. The Hansa Yellow Deep is a very similar hue, but it's cleaner and would work better for floral painting, which was my goal. It's not a color I turn to often, but I've already started using it more than I ever used Indian Yellow, so I think it was worth the purchase.

Transparent Red Oxide is such a wonderful color. It's basically the same hue as my Burnt Sienna, but the colors it mixes are so much more rich, and it has heavier granulation. Because my swatch cards lean more toward the main color, the swatch with Ultramarine Blue is too warm to be considered completely neutralized, but when mixed proportionately, the two colors make a deep velvety black that is neither warm nor cool, and when used in washes it will granulate really beautifully with both colors. It seems much darker than my mixtures with Burnt Sienna and Ultramarine. I'm rapidly falling in love with this color!

**UPDATE** 1/9/19 - 2 more swatch cards: Nickel Titanate Yellow and Pyrrol Red. Also, I added a new custom 26 color palette at the very end with pictures, a list of paints and some of the reasoning behind my choices :)

The swatches for Nickel Titanate Yellow are very soft, but not muted. It's a nice cool yellow, and I was surprised to see that it isn't much more opaque than my Sennelier Yellow Light (PY153). It seems to separate a bit, almost like granulation, and you can see in the washes that there is a bit of yellow pigment that settles on top in a cloudy sort of pattern. It's quite interesting. When I mixed it with Dioxazine Violet it looked initially like buff titanium, but as it dried the yellow and violet separated and it became more of a muddy green. I love the greens and oranges, particularly the mixtures with Cobalt Teal and Rhodenite Genuine.

I finally managed to get Pyrrol Red for my palette! I kept putting it off, or buying other reds thinking they would be better, and being so disappointed (I'm looking at you Quin Red!). I was wary about this color because I thought I wouldn't like a red that was semiopaque (as stated on handprint), but I loved swatching it! The hue is perfect, and the mixtures with the granulating blues are incredible! It makes super dark warm violets with Phthalo Blue and Viridian Green, and the only color I dislike on this swatch card is the mixture with Nickel Titanate Yellow. The wash was fine, but the glaze was muddy, probably due to the combined opacity of these two paints.


**UPDATE** 1/7/18 - 3 more swatch cards: Rhodenite Genuine, Deep Sap Green and Undersea Green.

I love the Rhodenite Genuine swatches. I've been back and forth about this color more than once, mainly because of the brownish coloration that surfaces when it dries (is it oxidization or granulation?). I don't think it's a good color to use on its own for that reason. This swatch card isn't as vibrant as my swatches for Quin Rose or Quin Magenta, but I think that's the draw. Rhodenite has a pink hue that sits somewhere between the two colors, and which seems to glow in all of the washes. The granulation/oxidization is subtle in the mixes, but it's just enough to add a bit of texture and earthiness. I love the swatches with Manganese Blue Hue and Cobalt Teal, plus all the yellow and orange mixes are absolutely beautiful. I could stare at these swatches for hours...

Deep Sap Green was something I received as a gift (I wanted Sap Green, but was given this instead). Though I wouldn't have chosen this myself because it is a mixture of Quin Gold and Prussian Blue (the latter of which has debatable lightfastness), the color itself is quite pretty. I would say it is slightly warmer and brighter than Perylene Green, but makes very similar mixes that are equally dark in value. Because I have Perylene Green already, which is a single pigment and lightfast, I don't intend to add Deep Sap Green to my palette.

Undersea Green was surprising. It's a mixture of Ultramarine Blue and Quin Gold, and it has subtle blue granulation from the PB29. Honestly it's not a color I really enjoy looking at, but the swatches are beautifully muted and earthy. Not to mention, despite some of these mixtures being as many as four pigments, I didn't get a single muddy color. I think the range of browns would work really well for tree bark, and there are a nice range of beautiful pine greens.


**UPDATE** 1/4/18 - I made six more swatch cards for the collection (sorry about the low quality, Skillshare balked at uploading the large versions of the photos)

I switched up my swatching style a bit, making the first layer more watered down, wet in wet, and then only glazing over half the swatch, so that I can still see the granulation. I'm much happier with the result. I'm waiting on two more paints to arrive, so I left two blank spaces for them on the new swatch cards.

Overall, I'm really glad I swatched these. I initially tried Bordeaux on its own in my Strathmore mixed media sketchbook, and it looked really muted and underwhelming. I was unsure if I even wanted to try using it in a palette after that, but after having swatched it on this Canson Moulin du Roy paper, it proved itself to be the vibrant crimson color I was looking for. It's warmer than the Sennelier Permanent Magenta I had before, so I think it will work better for darkening oranges and reds. Moonglow mixes so well for a three pigment color, the swatches aren't muddy at all, and the granulation is so beautiful. Sodalite is amazing! It I can't say there's a single mixture I dislike. I received DS's Manganese Blue Hue as a gift (I had asked for Da Vinci's Manganese Blue, which has real Manganese Blue in it, and they purchased this for me instead), but I was surprised to see how different the swatches were from my Phthalo Blue. The paint itself is similar in consistency to Sennelier's Red Violet. It isn't highly pigmented, so it takes a lot of paint to get a strong mass tone. However, I realized that these two paints aren't intended to be used in mass tone. Rather they do best in washes, where their granulation can really shine through. It's neat that PB15 can granulate like this, and though I can't show it, the Red Violet also has lovely granulation. This Manganese Blue Hue is definitely going into my palette. I purchased the Viridian Green a while back so as to not have such a sticky Phthalo Green ( I had M. Graham's before). The granulation is nice and relatively subtle, and since I don't intend to use it in mass tone without mixing it, I think it will work fine. Even the glazes in the mixtures look pretty nice, probably because the PG7 is so highly staining. Lastly, the Cascade Green.... there are a few mixtures I like, such as the Red Violet, Viridian and Sodalite, and it neutralizes perfectly with Bordeaux, but overall I'm not amazed by this one. It looks a bit chalky, which must be the Raw Sienna in the mixture. I've never mixed this color myself because I don't have a Raw Sienna, and though I do think it looks nice in a wash on its own, I just don't know how useful that will be for me.

(I'll update again with Daniel Smith's Undersea Green, Deep Sap Green, Rhodenite Genuine, Nickel Titanate Yellow and Pyrrol Red as soon as I can get more 3mm tape. I ran out on Cascade Green, and that's why the swatches are oddly shaped. Also, I'll update with my new custom 26 color palette.)



Hansa Yellow Deep - Daniel Smith - PY65

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 1 - student project


Transparent Red Oxide - Daniel Smith - PR101Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 2 - student project

Nickel Titanate Yellow - Daniel Smith - PY53

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 3 - student project


Pyrrol Red - Daniel Smith - PR254

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 4 - student project

 Rhodenite Genuine - Daniel Smith

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 5 - student project


Deep Sap Green - Daniel Smith - PB27 + PO48 + PY150

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 6 - student project


Undersea Green - Daniel Smith - PB29 + PO48 + PY150

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 7 - student project


Bordeaux - Daniel Smith - PV32

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 8 - student project


Moonglow - Daniel Smith - PG18, PB29, PR177

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 9 - student project


Sodalite Genuine - Daniel Smith

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 10 - student project


Manganese Blue Hue - Daniel Smith - PB15

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 11 - student project


Viridian Green - Sennelier - PG18, PG7

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 12 - student project


Cascade Green - Daniel Smith - PB15, PBr7 (Raw Sienna)

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 13 - student project


Quinacridone Magenta - Qor - PR122

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 14 - student project


Quinacridone Rose - M. Graham - PV19

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 15 - student project


Quinacridone Red - Sennelier - PR209

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 16 - student project


French Vermilion - Sennelier - PR242

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 17 - student project


Sennelier Orange - Sennelier - PO73

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 18 - student project


Transparent Pyrrole Orange - Qor - PO71

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 19 - student project


Indian Yellow - M.Graham - PY110

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 20 - student project


Sennelier Yellow Light - Sennelier - PY153

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 21 - student project


Lemon Yellow - Sennelier - PY3

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 22 - student project


Sennelier Green - Sennelier - PG36

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 23 - student project


Phthalo Green - M. Graham - PG7

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 24 - student project


Cobalt Teal - Qor - PG50

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 25 - student project


Phthalo Blue - M. Graham - PB15:3

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 26 - student project


Ultramarine Blue - DaVinci - PB29

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 27 - student project


Anthraquinone Blue - M. Graham - PB60

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 28 - student project


Dioxazine Purple - Qor - PV23

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 29 - student project

Red Violet - Sennelier - PV16

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 30 - student project


Permanent Magenta - Sennelier - PV19

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 31 - student project


Perylene Maroon - Daniel Smith - PR179

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 32 - student project


Burnt Sienna - DaVinci - PBr7

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 33 - student project


Quinacridone Gold - Qor - PO48 + PY150

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 34 - student project


Nickel Azo Yellow - DaVinci - PY150

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 35 - student project


Green Gold - Qor - PY129

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 36 - student project


Perylene Green - Daniel Smith - PBk31

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 37 - student project


 (By the way, sorry about the poor quality of the photos, my lighting is awful and I don't have a scanner)

I admit, I did these swatches way in advance of having taken this class, but I did learn about swatching paints from Denise's YouTube channel InLiquidColor, so I feel like it's appropriate to share my swatches here. Thank you so much Denise for all of your videos on the different pigments and brands of watercolor paint. They've been invaluable :)

When I first started buying paints, I wanted to swatch them out on a standard grid-style mixing chart (just like the bonus project for this class), but I didn't feel like that was a practical way to assess my colors in the end. I wanted something smaller, where I could continue to add in new paints as needed. Having swatches I could flip through, which also contained their possible mixes worked out best for me. I did start out with opacity tests and lifting/staining on these cards, but I ended up getting so many paints that I decided to save space and just have the main swatch (the largest swatch on the cards) and the mixes. On top of all the swatches, I have a glazing strip, as I tend to do a lot of layering in my paintings. The majority of each card is separated into smaller rectangular areas where I mix my main color with the other colors in my palette. I do not mix them so that I achieve a middle range color between the two, rather all the mixes on a specific card will have more of the main color in them (e.g. if my main color is a yellow, and I'm mixing it with a red, I will not swatch a middle orange, but rather a yellow orange. If the main color is red, the mix with yellow would be a red orange). I do this so that when I get to the other swatch cards I don't get duplicate mixes. I can sort of estimate what the color would be in between by looking at the mixes side by side.

Regarding the cards, they are done on Canson Moulin du Roy 140lb Cold Pressed paper cut to 10cm x 15cm or roughly 4"x6". I think this is the perfect size, as I can slip them into the sleeves of a photo album for safe keeping. I chose this paper because it is what I typically paint on, so I won't get any surprises when I start an actual painting.

I found these swatches very useful in learning about the properties of each tube of paint. For instance, I realized that some of my Sennelier paints as well as my M.Graham paints seem to have a very strange texture that I don't really enjoy. Particularly Sennelier's red violet, which is a beautiful color, but the texture gets pretty streaky when glazing. M. Graham's paints seem to develop a texture mainly in mass tone, but it also shows up when glazing with certain colors. I personally think I might look to a brand that does not use honey in future, like Daniel Smith or DaVinci, and see if I run into the same problem with these pigments.


Below is my custom palette and id chart:

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 38 - student project


Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 39 - student project


*Lemon Yellow - Sennelier - PY3

*Sennelier Yellow Light - Sennelier - PY153

Indian Yellow - M. Graham - PY110

Quinacridone Gold - Qor - PO48 + PY150

*Green Gold - Qor - PY129

*Sennelier Green - Sennelier - PG36 (Phthalo Green Y. S,)

Viridian Green - Sennelier - PG18 + PG7

*Quinacridone Rose - M. Graham - PV19

French Vermilion - Sennelier - PR242

*Sennelier Orange - Sennelier - PO73

Burnt Sienna - DaVinci - PBr7

*Perylene Green - Daniel Smith - PBk31

*Cobalt Teal - Qor - PG50

Phthalo Blue - M. Graham - PB15:3 (Phthalo Blue G. S.)

Opera - Holbein - BV10 + PR122

*Quinacridone Magenta - Qor - PR122

*Dioxazine Purple - Qor - PV23

Perylene Red - Daniel Smith - PR179

*Sodalite Genuine - Daniel Smith - N/A

Anthraquinone Blue - M. Graham - PB60

*Ultramarine Blue - DaVinci - PB29


I'm using a very small Meeden palette, which is meant to hold only 12 half pans, though after I took out the insert, I could wedge in 21 half pans instead (kept in place with velcro dots affixed to the bottom of each pan and the bottom of the tin. I would not recommend velcro for this unless your palette is really crammed full, because the pans rock around a bit, which can be annoying).

I took Denise's advice and tried my best to keep my darker colors away from my yellows, to prevent contamination as much as possible (which could easily happen if I left my Phthalo and Anthra blues nearby, since they're from M.Graham and seem to get everywhere). I decided to do a sort of warm/cool split, and keep my more neutral colors in the center.

If I had to only choose 12 colors for my palette, to use the tin as it was intended, I would choose the colors below (These colors are in the list above as well, marked with an asterisk).


Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 40 - student project


I mainly paint scenes from my garden, so my subjects are foliage, flowers and bugs (occasionally a lizard or hummingbird). I need a good middle yellow for flowers and bees. I also need lots of options for greens so I like to keep a cool yellow and both a warm and cool blue on my palette, as well as both Green Gold and Perylene Green, which I use all the time. A good bright orange is useful for a lot of different flowers, as well as a warm and cool magenta. In this 12 color palette, I would really miss my French Vermilion, but I decided that I would rather have a non-granulating purple on my palette, since my blues are both heavily granulating colors. As much as I love Anthra Blue, I've found that the majority of its color mixes are nearly identical to Ultramarine Blue, and if I needed them a bit darker, I could always add in Sodalite Genuine, Dioxazine Purple or Perylene Green.

Luckily, I don't really have to limit my palette this much, but I enjoyed the exercise of trying to pare down my collection to what is absolutely essential :)



As I showed above, I have been working with a 21 color palette ever since taking this class. I recently have gotten some new paints over the holidays, and decided to upgrade to a palette that was a bit less cramped. I purchased this Meeden 24 palette which came with empty half pans on Amazon for under $14, and then covered up the logo with some cute stickers :)

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 41 - student project

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 42 - student project


The concise color list and a close up photo are near the bottom of the page.

I wanted to give a few reasons for each color choice as well. I have been using a lot of Dr. PH Martin's Bleed Proof White for highlights lately, and also have been enjoying playing around with adding gouache into my watercolor paintings. I think the combination is really nice, and it made me want to have one fairly opaque, lighter color in my watercolor palette. Thus I chose Nickel Titanate Yellow for those reasons, and because it's a very cool yellow (even more so than lemon yellow) and mixes really nice greens. I haven't done anything with it but swatching so far, but I'm excited to experiment with it more.

Lemon Yellow is sticking around, because it's just so vibrant! I don't think it's very natural looking, but I seem to use a lot of it anyway, mainly with warmer blues or cooler reds. The resulting colors are much more punchy than the mixtures with Sennelier Yellow Light.

Sennelier Yellow Light is still on my palette, but its opacity is very similar to Nickel Titanate Yellow. I'd like to try a different medium yellow once I run out of this color, because it looks a bit chalky. Maybe PY154 will be less opaque.

Indian Yellow... I actually really don't like this color at all. I keep it because I need a warm yellow for a floral palette, or so I'm told, but I never touch this color if I can help it. I'd love to try a PY65 instead. This color has a certain glow to it that just seems unnatural. In masstone it leans a bit toward a brown. It doesn't mix very nice greens, because you can see that orange color underneath. I plan to ask for some paints later in the year for my birthday, and then I'll probably replace it.

Sennelier Orange is a nice orange that leans more red than yellow. I use this in place of Indian Yellow to mix a variety of oranges. It seems like it has some opacity to it, but I don't really mind it in this color. I chose this over Qor's Transparent Pyrrole Orange because the latter suffers a bit from the same issues that Indian Yellow does. It looks a bit unnatural, and has a strange brownish cast to it sometimes, whereas Sen. Orange is vibrant and clean.

French Vermilion is one of my favorite hues, although it has a tendency to look a bit chalky, as it's semi-transparent. I think when I run out of this tube, which will be a while, I might replace it with Daniel Smith's Pyrrol Scarlet. The swatches I've seen of Pyrrol Scarlet online seem richer than French Vermilion, so I'm curious. Still, I'm not dissatisfied with this color at all. This serves as my warm red.

Pyrrol Red is a new addition that serves as my middle red. Until now, my palette has really suffered from lack of a standard red color for a long time. Though I can mix a pretty decent red with Fr. Vermilion and Quin Magenta, I just like the convenience of having Pyrrol Red on my palette. It mixes well with just about everything, and is semi-transparent/semi-opaque. I haven't seen it in action yet outside of swatching, so I don't know if I'll love or hate the opacity of this paint yet.

Quinacridone Rose is my warm magenta. It's vibrant and lovely, and the only change I would make is to purchase it from another brand in future, because I'm constantly sticking my finger in the one I have now and getting it all over me. Also, I'm not sure if you can see it on the swatch, but in the masstone, this paint seems to have a strange texture, likely because it's too highly pigmented. I generally mix my paints on the more saturated side, rather than diluting them a lot, so this is a problem for me. FYI, all of my M. Graham paints have this problem, even Indian Yellow. Unfortunately, the tubes I purchased are huge, and it will be a long time before I get through them.

Quinacridone Magenta is my cool magenta. Both this and Quin Rose make lovely purples, and I personally like the oranges this paint makes as well, because they're more like a melon color. The mixture with Quin Gold is also very nice.

Bordeaux is also new to my palette, and a recent acquisition. This serves as my crimson substitute I guess. It's very similar to Sennelier's Permanent Magenta, but it's more red. I love the purples this produces, because they're softer and more natural than those mixed with the Quins above. I think it's a better choice for shadows on red flowers than Perylene Maroon, and that's the main reason I have it.

Red Violet is a paint I've had for a while and never touched after swatching. The pigment itself I believe is called Manganese Violet. I was woefully ignorant of how to use this paint when I bought it, but after testing it more (as described in one of my updates) I now understand that it should only be used in very wet washes with no glazing. I think of it as basically an effect paint, and the result is really pretty. I'll add a new little sample swatch below, so that you can see a better representation of this paint (because the swatch card looks horrible). This was a wet in wet application, where I dabbed a dilution of Red Violet onto very wet 100% cotton paper (in my Strathmore Mixed Media sketchbook).

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 43 - student project


Dioxazine Purple, is a nice cool violet. It's very saturated, and I use it to darken a lot of warmer colors. It isn't a paint I use too frequently, but I think it's useful. One thing I want to mention is that I have heard in a few places online that this Qor version is the only one that is lightfast, but I've also heard elsewhere that many PV23s are more lightfast than they are said to be. I'm unsure if when I have to refill this color I will go with Qor again or not. I know they're expensive colors, that they spread in water really rapidly due to the aquazol binder, and that people say to use them directly from the tube for the the best saturation, but honestly, I just really like these paints dried in pans. I poured them into pans from the get-go, and though they shrink a lot compared to my other colors, I love the level of firmness the paints have when the pan is dry. They aren't so dry that they crack, but they aren't squishy at all, and they rewet really quickly. They also seem to last longer in the pans than some of my other brands, even for colors I use constantly like Green Gold. So, even if there are other lightfast versions of this color, I may just opt to get another Qor High Chroma set when I run out.

Moonglow is a wonderful deep smoky violet color, with blue and green granulation. It's really lovely, and mixes well with everything else in my palette, even the more opaque colors. I've never heard of anyone who didn't love this color, and I can see why. I avoided most colors with three pigments previously, but I have a suspicion now that the number of pigments in a paint matters less so long as the majority of the pigments are heavily granulating. It seems like my mixtures all come out clean if the colors are heavily granulating, and turn out muddy only when the colors have higher opacity, but maybe what constitutes "mud" for me is different than other people.

Sodalite Genuine is another gorgeous granulating color, a deep dark slate blue. You can use it in dilution for granulation or high saturation for optimal depth of color, and it doesn't seem to create any ugly textures. It mixes well with everything, and creates very prominent granulation patterns. It's just lovely. I can't imagine not having it on my palette now.

Anthraquinone Blue is another color I could take out. As mentioned earlier, this color makes very similar mixtures to Ultramarine Blue, in my experience. It also has the same textural issues that all my other M. Graham paints have, and since my main use for this color is to use it in saturation to create dark mixtures... well, it isn't very useful for me. I considered getting Indanthrone Blue from Daniel Smith to replace it, which also uses PB60, but it isn't as dark as Anthra Blue, so I think it probably wouldn't be worth it. I find that some of the other colors in my palette serve as better darks. Even Phthalo Blue (which is also an M. Graham color) seems to do a better job at mixing darks that are clean and flat. The only reason I can see for using this paint is if I want to use it on its own, but it doesn't really feature as a common color in my chosen subject matter. I use it more than any of the other colors I have that didn't make it into my palette though, because I guess I can trust that it won't granulate in washes like Ultramarine. It's just a placeholder for now though, until I can replace it with something else later on. My intention is to remove it and add in a Transparent Red Oxide from Daniel Smith, which I think I'll like a lot better than Burnt Sienna.

Ultramarine Blue truly is an essential color for me. I love the hue on its own, and though I don't get to use it straight out of the pan for my subject matter, I still get to see it peeking out of mixtures as it granulates. It's lovely. I mix a lot of greens and purples with this color, and generally turn to it most of all my blues.

Phthalo Blue is the only M. Graham paint I have that I don't mind. Despite the frustration of always getting my fingers into this very sticky and highly staining paint, it is a lovely mixer, and makes extremely dark colors with Transparent Pyrrole Orange, Senellier Orange, French Vermilion, Pyrrol Red, Quin Rose, Bordeaux, Moonglow, Perylene Green, Deep Sap Green, Undersea Green, Burnt Sienna and Perylene Maroon. None of these mixes have to be so saturated with Phthalo Blue that they have that strange texture, so it creates nice flat dark washes. It mixes lovely bight greens that aren't unnatural as well. It is another essential blue for my palette.

Manganese Blue Hue is another color that has to be used wet in wet with high dilution. It's not a good mixer to create bright saturated colors, but it has beautiful granulation. It's a new addition that I am very excited to play around with. I think for a granulating light blue, it will be more useful than Cobalt Teal because it is very transparent.

Cobalt Teal is my only "toxic" paint (I think). Similar to Ultramarine, this paint granulates, but can also be used in concentration to create fairly flat washes and glazes. It mixes well and doesn't necessarily separate if you don't add much water. I love this color on its own, and I like the effect of the granulation in mixes, but it is certainly semi-opaque, and can look chalky. I'll probably continue to use it anyway though, because the hue is so pretty. I've considered buying a full sized tube of this paint, because I'm nearly out, but I think I'll just buy another of Qor's High Chroma sets instead, since this seems like an economical way to get such an expensive pigment, as well as top up some of my other frequently used colors.

Viridian Green is a mixture of Viridian and Phthalo Green Blue Shade, so it has nice staining properties but also granulates. I have a lot of Phthalo Green now, and can't justify buying another similar hue, but I'm not thrilled with this one either. The glaze on the main swatch looks pretty splotchy, and even the wash has a weird texture to it. The mixtures seem really nice though. I guess I'll just have to be careful when I use this paint, and try not to use it in very high saturation. At least it's a color I'll never use unmixed. If anyone can suggest to me a Phthalo Green that you can use in concentration that doesn't have any strange texture, I'd love to know! I had hoped this color would have a pretty granulating texture, but alas... This color also doesn't make the deep darks that M. Graham's Phthalo Green Blue Shade can.

Perylene Green is one of my dark colors. I use it for darkening greens mainly. It's not as deep and dark as the Phthalo colors can be, but it is great for mixing shadow colors for foliage. The hue is a muted, dark bluish green. I wish the color was a bit richer, personally, but it's the best lightfast option available. If Prussian Blue was lightfast however, I would definitely replace Perylene Green with Deep Sap Green (which is a mixture of Prussian Blue and Quin Gold). Deep Sap Green is warmer, but much richer in color, and creates incredibly dark mixtures with almost any color. I should probably do a lightfastness test on this color for myself.

Undersea Green is a mixture of Ultramarine Blue and Quin Gold. It has nice granulation, and mixes a muted but rich palette of foresty colors. I'm a real fan of the browns and greens it produces. Despite the number of pigments, the colors it mixes do not seem muddy to me. I mix this color on my own quite often, so it's nice to have this convenience version to save time.

Green Gold is my most used color. I generally go through yellows really quickly, as they are easily overpowered, but that isn't the case with Green Gold, which I consider an earthy yellow. It's very vibrant and highly staining. It mixes lovely natural greens. I mainly mix it with Phthalo Blue and Green, as well as Cobalt Teal, to make bright sunlit foliage colors. I can't say enough about this color, it's just so useful for me that I can't do without it. It also mixes lovely vibrant burnt oranges with reds and magentas.

I use Quinacridone Gold in the exact same way as Green Gold. It creates more muted greens and richer burnt oranges. Because these two colors seem to have some synergy, the colors made with either seem to go well together, so having both just offers more variety. I have heard that Qor's Quin Gold is much more orange than versions from other brands, but since I've never personally worked with anything else, I can only say that I'm happy with this one. No complaints here! Of the two colors, Green Gold is more of an essential color for me, but I'm very happy to have both on my palette.

Rhodenite Genuine is a beautiful mixer. I don't plan to use it for floral painting, because its slight brownish coloration would make the flowers look less fresh. However, I think it would be great for painting distant flowers in a garden landscape. I think it would synergize well with Quin Gold and Green Gold mixtures, which are vibrant and yet slightly neutralized. This was a last minute switch for Burnt Sienna. I realized that I hardly touch Burnt Sienna when it's in my palette. I like to mix my browns instead, and have only used it to make Jane's Gray on rare occasions. I think Rhodenite Genuine is a better fit for me. I mentioned earlier that if I ever replace Anthra Blue, I would put in Transparent Red Oxide, which would be a real Burnt Sienna replacement. Still, I think that Rhodenite is going to be useful in this palette.

Lastly I have Perylene Maroon. It's my main brown mixer. It also makes nice deep neutrals with Phthalo Blue and Perylene Green. I was surprised by how brownish this red is on its own. It does not work as a crimson, which was my hope, but it does mix rich browns and greys.

I organized these paints from my cool yellows through the spectrum until I reached the greens, and then those connected well with my earth colors. I did leave colors like Sodalite Genuine and Moonglow with the blues and purples, though I think they could be considered earthy, mainly because I think they chromatically looked best there. I realize that my darkest colors are right below my lightest colors, but I'm not a particularly messy painter, so hopefully I'll be able to keep them from being contaminated.


Here's an up close look at my palette:

Custom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 44 - student projectCustom Palette, ID Chart and Swatches - image 45 - student project


Color List:

Nickel Titanate Yellow - Daniel Smith - PY53

Lemon Yellow - Sennelier - PY3

Sennelier Yellow Light - Sennelier - PY153

Indian Yellow - M. Graham - PY110

Sennelier Orange - Sennelier - PO73

French Vermilion - Sennelier - PR242

Pyrrol Red - Daniel Smith - PR254

Quinacridone Rose - M. Graham - PV19

Quinacridone Magenta - Qor - PR122

Bordeaux - Daniel Smith - PV32

Red Violet - Sennelier - PV16

Dioxazine Purple - Qor - PV23

Moonglow - Daniel Smith - PG18, PB29, PR177

Sodalite Genuine - Daniel Smith

Anthraquinone Blue - M. Graham - PB60

Ultramarine Blue - Da Vinci - PB29

Phthalo Blue - M. Graham - PB15:3

Manganese Blue Hue - Daniel Smith - PB15

Cobalt Teal - Qor - PG50

Viridian Green - Sennelier - PG18, PG7

Perylene Green - Daniel Smith - PBk31

Undersea Green - Daniel Smith - PB29, PO48, PY150

Green Gold - Qor - PY129

Quinacridone Gold - Qor - PO48, PY150

Rhodenite Genuine - Daniel Smith

Perylene Maroon - Daniel Smith - PR179


And that's probably going to be my last update to this project. The only color I own that I haven't made a swatch card for is Holbein's Opera, and I plan to just use that for fun in my sketchbook. I hope all this information is useful to someone. It was helpful for me at least to document my thought process for these palettes and my opinions on how best to use some of these colors. If you got this far, thank you for reading :)