ARTofficial Intelligence • FEB

ARTofficial Intelligence • Cindy Tafil

What are Mars colors?

If you answered colors from Mars you would be partially correct. The planet Mars contains lots of iron oxides that give it its rusty appearance. Alien green however is not one of them. The Mars colors are all permanent, opaque and consist of synthetic iron oxides.

The colors are:

Mars Black is faster drying than Ivory Black and is a warm black.

Mars Brown is similar to Burnt Sienna.

Mars Red can be a dull violet or reddish orange gone dull.

Mars Violet is a hint of violet in an Indian Red.

Mars Yellow is lusterless yellow ochre.

There is some confusion about using the color black versus making a dark tone to simulate black.

Black paint matters! Black right out of the tube can be far too dark as a darkening agent for colors and should be used only to help establish the tone of a color. Mixing a dark color with its dark complement such as Alizarin Crimson and Thalo Green or Burnt Umber with Thalo Blue produce a rich dark. Payne’s Gray mixed with a touch of Alizarin and Violet produce a cool tone for shadows.

What’s the difference among Mars Black, Ivory Black and Lamp Black?

Mars Black is opaque with a warm hue.

Lamp Black (a term from the old oil burning lamps) is opaque, somewhat dull and is made of carbon collected from the soot of burning oils and fats. It’s not a friendly black and adjustments are necessary for the hue and tone of warm colors when a cool hue of the color is desired.

Ivory Black is made of carbon that is the result of burning bone. It is permanent and very transparent and not overpowering. A cool gray is produced by mixing White and Ivory Black.