I normally use a really minimal palette but I’ve thrown that idea to the wind and been experimenting with new colours. These colour dot samples from Daniel Smith are great for trying out and experimenting what colours will work.
Previously I’ve just taken a chance picking new colours by looking at an online sample or opening the top of the tube and just guessing, which is crazy expensive. Nothing beats actually painting a sample and seeing how the paint reacts to lots of water or used really densely.
It’s been good trying out new greens and blues for ages I’d pretty much only use cerulean and cobalt blue and for my greens sap green and cerulean blue mixed with yellow ochre and cadmium yellow.
I think recently its because I’ve been moving away from working tonally and going for pure pigment – sometimes mixing up a turquoise or bright purple/pink or even a deep dark green can be really difficult from a basic palette. Instead its been a lot of fun just messing about with pure colours (cue – heavenly chorus!)
I’m really new to Daniel Smith watercolours and have been really impressed with some of the weirder colours like cascade green with has an unusual mixture of blue and green that separates out and their lunar range which has iron oxide in it which makes an really interesting texture.
I’ve found them quite difficult to find in the UK at art stores, you can however get them online at Jackson’s Art Supplies.