Vincent Van Gogh color Palette

What Does Your Color Palette Say About You?


Featured image is a photograph of one of Vincent Van Gogh’s palettes taken by Matthias Schaller

Sure, we spend a lot of time looking at the pages that result from the beautiful colors we buy in bottles and little cakes, but German photographer Matthias Schaller decided that the palettes artists use are just as fantastic as the paintings they produce. Last spring, he exhibited photographs of the palettes of famous artists like that of Vincent Van Gogh pictured above. You can see some of his photos here. According to Matthias, you can learn a lot about an artist by looking at their palette.

How do you use your palette and what does it say about you?

So, when you look at your color palette, what do you see? Do you create neat little spaces and keep colors separate or end up letting the water run all of your colors together to get that perfect hue? Do you use your palette just as a holding place for your colors or do you use it as a tool for exploring those colors? Some of our students even paint their own palettes in order to experiment with colors, solve problems, or just to have something different to draw and paint!

Judi Nyerges tried to explore the greens in her palette by creating these color strips to get better at greens as part of a botanical drawing workshop.

Do you ever have trouble adjusting to a new set of watercolors? Eileen Butcher created these little diagrams to help her remember what combinations produced different colors from a new watercolor set she bought.

Marissa Lee Swinghammer painted her palette right next to a sketch she did and it really added to the composition of her pages.


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