Grey Green (Antq)
- PW6 PBk11 PG7
- ASTM I
- Series 2
Grey Green is a soft gray color similar to the traditional davy’s gray but without the grittiness and weakness that pigment is prone to. Neutral colors are very common in nature and so the artist is constantly using them. It is possible to mix them all from brighter colors but the convenience of having certain standard gray tube colors on hand like this one and Payne’s Grey has made them very popular colors for more than 150 years. Henry Davy was an artist who made a living teaching art and making etchings and watercolors of romantic ruins of stone buildings in the south of England. This architectural interest lead his interest in a pigment made of ground up slate with yellow ochre and black to give it a greenish character to reproduce the color of stone ruins. The color itself proved popular amongst landscape artists but few liked the grittiness of the color. Davy is probably better known these days because of his color than for his humble artworks. Modern fashions have moved on too and we no longer paint a lot of romantic ruins and yet greenish grays tend to be generally useful in landscape painting.
Grey Green is a modern blend which has none of the disadvantages of the old color while retaining the useful slightly greenish hue that artists like. It is a blend of white with Phthalo Green and black and is very permanent. It can be used as a gray in landscape and other painting techniques but it can also be thought of as the base for making a wide range of other colors. Mixed with Australian Ghost Gum or with Unbleached Titanium it makes very soft and gentle grays. A very warm grey results from mixing it with Ash Pink, while a cooler more blue gray comes from a mixture with Australian Sky Blue.
Most of the colors it makes tend to be subdued and softened. In a mixture with Dioxazine Purple it makes a lovely soft violet color and a mixture with Ultramarine Blue makes a delightful grayish blue that is very easy on the eye. Since the colors in the Australian bush are often grayish greens this color shines for these sorts of colors. Grey Green mixed with Chromium Oxide Green is a great start and it makes soft warm olive greens when mixed with Australian Yellow Green. Henry Davy might have been disappointed at the lack of old ruins to paint in the new world but he would be rather chuffed that Grey Green continues to be a valued color long after his first experiments with making a color like this.