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August 24, 2007

Collecting Colours

joshua001.jpg

I'm always trying to find colors that are a little different. I want a blue you cant buy in a store. When I was painting, I found this place in Amsterdam that actually made pigments — Id buy from them and make my own paint. I remember buddies asking me, Why do you do that? And I said, You know why? Youre using the same blue, the same red, and the same green as every other schmuck that walks into that paint store. And I dont want to do that!

Im using the same principle to pick colors for my work now. I want colors that make people say, Oh, look at this combination of orange and green and blue — I never would have thought to mix those. I want to have that effect on people.

I take a lot of digital photographs just to extract color. I go to an arboretum here on Long Island at different points in the year and take pictures of the orchid show or the Christmas poinsettias. Nature does a pretty good job of blending. Youll get a flower that starts with green, goes up to yellow, and blooms red. So already Ive got a red, a yellow, and a green that all complement each other.

Ill extract those colors, and then I might find a blue that I like in a sunset photo, and extract that as well. Next, I bring those colors into Photoshop. All the colors are by themselves, saying, Im a blue, dont touch me. Then I go into Filters and apply a Gaussian blur to the colors, so theyre no longer independent. The blue is now blending into the green, the green is blending into the yellow, and I have this blurred image of all the colors mixing together.

I take that image and run it through this program Ive created, and say, Okay, extract the top 16 colors. So now I have a range of colors extracted out of the image that I blended. The most complex color set Ive done was 74 colors, and the average is 32. And thats where I get all my colors.

Different Shade of Blue — Joshua Davis

Posted by administrator at August 24, 2007 02:08 PM

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