My thoughts at this stage is more philosophical and the experience of colour is something that is different for everybody, it is perceived differently. I found Still Life not an easy topic to have explored the development and learning of colour – I struggled with colour choices and execution of many of the exercises when I had to do a painting. Learning from that, I do think I should have spent more time on the little colour tests. I found the idea of Still Life, which I had to do some research on, very much as something that was created for appearances, for both the artist and the viewer (owner) I think it has to do with thinking and intentions about how I as the artist see something and then want to recreate this perception. A still life has something that reminds me of life as seen, but also something that will stay, even after that moment of seeing has past – but this is about an appearance of a thing of beauty, memory to treasure, status and to show off
I think about the rationality of using colour theory, but then again I am also very aware of how one’s feelings will guide you in the process of creating. It is good to look back as to how this project has up to now helped my to look at how I perceive colour; how the use of coloured pigments to create a painting and get the effects of what I want to be seen in my paintings, needs to become part of my daily practice. It reminds me of a language: as colour becomes an interpreter of what I see through hue and intensity(chroma). Somewhere I read the following remark: ” We make colour, rather than see colour. It happens, rather than it exists. ”
I realise that the exercises in this part of the study opened my insight into the importance of using the knowledge of the theory, having to do more exercises in order to develop my practice ……. it is about experience which comes with the time and effort you put into your practice. I realize that, although I understand and practice the use of tonal variation, I sometimes do get over focussed on details of colour of composition, and in that way loose focus of how light alters colour. I need to SQUINT more! I can do simpler exercises with less objects.
The subjective nature of human color perception was investigated extensively by Josef Albers, a well-known modern American painter, theorist, and educator during the 20th century. His most famous series, Homage to the Square, is a collection of paintings each including three or four nested squares of different colors or color intensities. These artistic experiments illustrate that how a color is perceived by humans is based more on the surrounding environment than the color itself. Take, for example, the two pieces below. At first glance, the background color for the painting on the left seems to be darker than that on the right, yet in reality these two colors are the same. The surrounding environment and the interplay of colors within these pieces give the impression that one is darker than the other.
I am reminded of a BBC article I read recently and how reading it reminded me that colour vision is a wonderful gift that starts with the sensors in the back of the eye that turn light information into electrical signals in the brain – called photoreceptors. Humans have a number of different kinds of photoreceptors, on average we have three different photoreceptors for coloured light. These are sensitive to blues, greens and reds respectively, and the information is combined to allow us to perceive the full range of colours.
There are so many theoretical, but also practical guidelines to take with me in my art practice which I hope to become more instinctively and easy to apply over time:
Hue is basically the name of the colour. It describes how much particular colour is similar to or different from unique colours, such as red, yellow, green and blue.
Saturation can be described as colourfulness of a colour relative to its brightness. Fully saturated or intense colour has no mixture of white, gray or black. Colour with no colorfulness, not saturated or dull, is gray.
Spectral colours, and some non-spectral colors as well, are considered to be fully
saturated. Some hues are perceived to be less saturated than others, although in reality they are not.
Brightness of a coloured surface depends upon the degree of its illuminance and reflectivity. Colors can be perceived as light or dark.