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Michael Wilcox (1)

Author of Blue and Yellow Don't Make Green

For other authors named Michael Wilcox, see the disambiguation page.

33 Works 634 Members 10 Reviews

Works by Michael Wilcox

Blue and Yellow Don't Make Green (1989) 327 copies, 6 reviews
The Artist's Guide to Selecting Colors (1997) 37 copies, 1 review
Color Mixing Swatch Book (2002) 24 copies
Glazing (2014) 16 copies, 1 review
Colour Mixing Swatch Book (2001) 11 copies


Common Knowledge




Wilcox intrigues the reader with an opening statement: "For more than 200 years the world has accepted that red, yellow and blue--the artists primaries--give new colours when mixed. And for more than 200 years artists have been struggling to mix colours on this basis." He was correct: mixing pigments does not equate seeing the colours transcend their original properties to form a "new" colour.

This sentiment is essentially what drew me in, because I didn't properly understand that mixing two primaries is a very deceptive process in creating a secondary colour, when using pigment-based materials. We've probably all ended up with a mud-coloured result when the elementary school lessons taught such mixing. In this book, the process is explained very sensibly, based on the actual physical properties of mixing pigments in any medium.

The strongest aspect of the information lies in knowing that colour (seen with our eyes) is a matter of the colour wheel of light (via computers, on movie or TV screens or via sunlight), being different to the colour wheels presented for mixing pigments. The contradictions in 'traditional' pigment-mixing by artists are resolved in Wilcox's explanatory descriptions and exercises.

The great strength of this book lies in the exercises and straight-through reading or skimming does not lend itself to understanding handling your pigmented media. The audience is likely to be seriously-engaged artists, art school students or instructors teaching colour mixing using pigments. The reader must also be willing to plough through redundant explanations and cope with passages that have important points to make, but the writing is too turgid for clarity. Had this book been written in a succinct and less convoluted style, it would have deserved 5-stars.
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SandyAMcPherson | 5 other reviews | Dec 28, 2021 |
Excellent reference that explains the derivation of pigments and their properties. Bought on recommendation of my oil painting teacher so I could judge how to correctly achieve the hue I wanted without having to buy many premixed (and expensive) tubes of paint. Applies equally to watercolours, acrylics, alkyds and gouache
SandyAMcPherson | Jun 20, 2017 |
The most detailed book around on glazing technique.
beaujoe | Aug 8, 2016 |

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