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Thread: Color blending questions

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Maryland, US
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    239

    Color blending questions

    I would love to have a deeper understanding of the real color blending mode and how it's mixing volumes affects saturation shifts. I've figured out a few ways of desaturating my mixes, the hue shifts are similar in result to what I get from pigment mixes in traditional media (in fact EXTREMELY close), but I'm having issues with some of the mixes causing unusual shifts towards saturation, from what I can tell it seems to deal with the way the engine is calculating the volume mixes during transfer and then trying to connect the difference based off of a table that I can't quite figure out. When adding small amounts of one paint to another I've found that the mixes can bend in nearly any direction I want quite controllably, but if I try to add a 50% mix of one color to another 50% of another color (low saturation blue to low saturation red) I end up often getting a much higher saturation mix of the colors than the input, is this because the software cannot see below the surface of the initial layer?

    How does this work? Is there a predictable, reliable way I can mix similar ratios of colors without causing a shift toward a higher saturation?

    I feel pretty close to understanding all the color mixing controls in ArtRage so far, but if I can master this tiny quirk, that I'm sure is caused because digital algorithms or some sort of adjusted color lookup index table of some form, then I should be good to reliably produce any color through mixing that I could want. My typical approach lends itself towards mixing my colors on a separate scrap prior to application and ensuring that the color is what I'm looking for in saturation, luminance, and hue, as such I don't have the issues some have with on canvas color mixing (which I do use in some areas but not nearly as often as some artists). Being able to reliable control both aspects of the painting though will push this through to a new level for me though and allow for a variety of techniques I couldn't use otherwise.

    Also, I'm trying to create an effect of "oiling out" an area of a painting where I make a layer of invisible liquid paint to work on top of, that will allow for smoother color mixing (glazing and transparency) for additional layers of color without resorting to the palette knife wet mixer, which has a tendency to get the same visual effect unless I pull the palette knife in knife mode across that wet blended area, resulting in unusual opacity shifts. It's acting as though the paint isn't actually become thinner just that it's alpha has been reduced. This kind of blending could actually be a very useful effect for achieving a wide variety of effects actually, but it's not the way it reads when in use, in turn leading me to need to think of an alternative way of working to account for the shift. Further if I add paint to areas blended out with the Palette Knife - Wet, I end up with color shifts based on the original color (as though the alpha information is remembered and then added to the volume of new paint added). Is there a work around to create the effect I'm looking to attain?

    Edit: I suppose in my last question I could just apply my paint with my brush and then blend it in with the palette knife - wet mode again and erase excess. hmmm.... that might actually work for the effect I'm looking to achieve, still though this isn't how I use the technique traditionally so it's still going to feel a bit odd.
    Last edited by Delofasht; 05-03-2015 at 01:57 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Maryland, US
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    I recently made a post in another forum regarding my thoughts on another software that does simulation of watercolor in a way that I appreciate quite a bit, but the developers asked about pigment mixing. I supplied my information regarding the subject, which while limited might prove useful to the considerations of saturation, value, and hue shifting in digital media versus traditional. I wanted to share a link to the thread so that you all could read my thinking and at least one source of information that has taught me a lot about color mixing and theory that I thought might help with regards to "real color blending" and how I see it working. It's filled to the brim with my observations and understanding at this point and what I see as the differences between pigment color mixing versus digital color mixing and it's inherent issues with the color spaces we are working with. Perhaps it could be utilized to further develop the color mixing engine in ArtRage as well.

    Delo's Post

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    302
    I did a systematic investigation of ArtRage blending:

    Here are the results, although I could not make much sense of them they may help for guidance.

    http://forums.artrage.com/showthread...lending-Engine

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Maryland, US
    Posts
    239
    Thanks for the link Dark, the color blend modes of this work identically to Photoshop but the wet mixing is vastly different due to the paint volumes and it's calculations. I feel like the color blending modes may be missing a bit of data for representing pigment based blending, which is subtractive blending based on light passing into pigment and being filtered of its color therefore reflecting back the color we see. This is what the real color blend mode seeks to replicate, and outside of its pushing the saturation it does quite well. If it could be adjusted to average out the saturation between the two colors leaning towards whichever has the higher volume at the time of mixing then I think it would be near perfect. That would allow us to avoid over saturated or undersaturated colors, we do not know the formulas they are using to generate the color mixing they are utilizing though.

    Honestly I would rather not have to adjust for the limitations of the software in regards to how it responds in traditional media, but there again I do not mind as much because the feel of everything as a whole is very authentic to how traditional media works for me. That being said I am hopeful they will continue to respond to these concerns as making the color mixing and brush engines and water dynamics and other small things like that work as close as possible to traditional means that I have less and less differences to account for when swapping between the traditional and digital. No other features could be as important in my opinion as those though, color, brush responsiveness, and viscosity dynamics (water or oil).

    Thanks for the link to the thread it had some interesting examples, particularly in the aspects of color blending with knife or brush.

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