Acrylic on canvas paper – 28.01.21

On the 28th of January, I attended a portraiture workshop run by the artist Shay Downer. I’ve attended a couple of Downer’s previous workshops over the past 2-3 years. Whilst previous workshops explored the medium charcoal, this session was focused on using the Zorn colour palette. I was restricted to using just 4 paints – yellow ochre, cadmium red, ivory black and white.

Up until then, colour theory had confused me. On one hand, it was simply. You had primary colours: red, yellow, blue. Those created secondary colours: Green, purple, orange. Combining primary and secondary colours, you got tertiary colours. On the other hand, when it came to choosing my own colours, my works looked unappealing, muddied and/or flat.

This workshop taught me that keeping the palette SIMPLE was the easiest, and, most effective. Its now a colour palette I like coming back to.