Category Archives: Buckthorn

Studying the Shades of Green

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In previous blog posts, we examined the many different shades of blue and studied the vibrant variations of yellow.

In this post, let’s take a closer look at a color that also boasts just as many wide-ranging hues: the secondary color green.

When painting nature, the color green will usually pop up prominently on your palette. Landscapes featuring forests, trees, or fields will involve a range of greens. Likewise, still lifes of apples, olives and limes will require their own sets of greens, not to mention the leaves and stems on flowers.

No matter what your medium, there are many types of greens available to suit your purpose. Here are a few of those greens along with an inside look at their origins:

  • Chromium oxide green gets its name from the inorganic compound that is used to create the pigment. This green has a bluish tinge, and is also known as Viridian.
  • Cobalt green is an artificial pigment made from a heated mix of cobalt oxide and zinc oxide. Although it is a permanent color, it has weak tinting strength.
  • Hooker’s green was named for the English botanist/artist who created it in the 19th century by combining Prussian Blue and Gamboge.
  • Phthalo green is short for ” Phthalocyanine Green G”. This synthetic pigment is created from a combination of copper and phthalocyanine. Available in a blue shade or yellow shade, Phthalo green is one of the most popular greens for painters.
  • Sap green was originally made from the berries of Buckthorn shrubs, but now it’s manufactured from a mixture of other pigments, including Phthalo green.


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