Lightfast 15 -
presentation of full tones in Schmincke colour charts

Brightening by mixing with white (usually with titanium white for oil, acrylic or gouache colours) or water dilution (for watercolours), enables a colour shade to be better represented in its diversity. Some colours, especially opaque colours, show their colour character very well even in full tone, as the example with gouache shows here. The painter can immediately see how the colour behaves. 


With other colours this can be much more difficult. At first sight, the applied full tone cannot be classified as "neutral", "red tinted" or "blue tinted" - unless the colour name already suggests this. In this case, the brightening shows how the colour changes when becoming lighter. For the two deep dark greys, there is hardly any difference in the full tone; when mixing with white, on the other hand, it becomes apparent that the first colour (Atrament, 10779) is much more blueish than the rather neutral grey colour Schmincke Paynesgrau (10782). This knowledge is indispensable for the choice of colour - both in pure application and in mixtures.


For translucent colours such as MUSSINI® Sap green, for example, another factor is important - the strong colour deviation between the (thicker) applied full tone and the thinner and/or lighter mixtures, which make it possible to recognize the character of the colour 


For watercolours the situation is different - here the several degrees of lightening are achieved by diluting the colour with water. The idea, however, is the same - the representation of the change in colour tone when lightening. The more transparent a shade, the more evident becomes the difference.


Using the colour charts, our artists can always be sure how a colour will behave. If you would like to know more, or if you like to mix colours to special tones, we recommend that you make your own colour charts. This is not only fun, it is also a long-term help in choosing the right colors.