Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Winsor Blue and Violet Color Charts

Winsor Violet color chart - top
Winsor Blue (Green Shade) - bottom
I think I'm in love! The two Winsor colors I experimented with (blue and violet) are amazingly powerful and vibrant. I've mostly shied away from the Winsor colors, because they're so strong, and because they aren't traditional, but I think I'll change my ways.
Winsor Violet (top chart) makes some great brown-grays when mixed with yellows (right side), but the violet shades are lovely. You can see the Violet by itself (not mixed with any other color except white) in the fifth row from the right. Oooh la la! Can you picture a violet like that in a painting?
The Winsor Blue (bottom chart) is so strong it overwhelms anything you mix it with, so you have to go easy. But if this color had a personality, it would be flashy! When mixed with different yellows, it makes many varieties of clean greens. You can see the Blue by itself (not mixed with any other color except white) in the fourth row from the right. What a gorgeous blue. Cest magnifique!
Why Winsor?
Both are made by Winsor & Newton , but althought I searched their Web site extensively, I couldn't find any reference to why they were named 'Winsor'. Was it because William Winsor, cofounder of the company together with Henry Newton, discovered and named them after himself? He was the chemist and Henry was the artist. Did it happen after 1900, when I believe copper phthalocyanine, the pigment in Winsor Blue, was either discovered or accepted as a pigment ingredient by the colourmen? I tried several Google searches, but found nothing. However, the Winsor & Newton Web site has some fascinating historical information in their historical catalogues. I'd love to visit the company someday, if I ever make it to England!
In the meantime, I'm checking out the other Winsor colors to see how they behave.

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