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In Painter 11 Essential Training, John Derry, one of the original Painter authors, demonstrates basic and advanced creative techniques that can get beginners up and running. He also shows old hands the new features that can get a creative vision out of the head and onto the canvas. John demonstrates how to establish an easy workflow in Painter by using a Wacom tablet, and he explains how to create, edit, and publish projects. Exercise files accompany the course.
Download the Painter/Photoshop Consistent Color Management PDF and the Brush Troubleshooting Checklist PDF from the Exercise Files tab.
Color is a major component of Painter. In fact, you need it in order to paint. In this chapter, we are going to take a look at Painter's various methods for controlling and accessing color. Because without them you are dead in the water. So, let's get started before we start drowning. Besides Painter's brushes themselves, the other key component to being able to express yourself is color. Color connotes a lot of emotion and feeling and so it's that combination of the expression of the marks made by the brush along with the color that is applied to the canvas that really is the carrier of emotion or feeling that you are going to be applying and communicating through your imagery.
So, we are going to talk in depth about color in this chapter. And I'm going to start off by talking about the Color palette. I'm just going to pull it off here for a moment so that we can actually look at it. We are going to take a look at what's going on in here in the mechanics of the palette itself. So, first and foremost, you'll see you have this display of a circle with a triangle inside of it. And the outer circle is actually what we call the Hue ring. This is where your redness, your yellowness, your greenness, all of those various colors that if you remember Roy G. Biv from grade school, all of those colors are contained in here.
And I can actually take this little indicator and you can see I can move it around and that is how I can dial in a particular kind of blue or cyan or whichever color I'm after. Secondly, you have the triangle in the center. And this triangle actually at the far right corner, whatever hue you currently have selected, this far right corner indicates that color at its full saturation. If I take this indicator and kind of drag it along the top edge of the triangle, what I'm doing is controlling the tint of this hue.
So, as I go more increasingly towards white I'm tinting that color, so that it becomes more and more tinted with white and similarly, as I drag this little indicator along the bottom edge of the triangle, I'm shading this color. That means I'm adding more and more black to it. And then finally, the left edge of the triangle is a grayscale. So, I go from 100% white through to 100% black. So, what I have got inside of this triangle are all the possible combinations of shade and value within this particular Hue.
And that's basically how you select color using this. New in Painter 11 is they've added what was the Color Information palette is now actually part of this. And it's nice because it's gives you a dual way to control what's going on with color. You can see right now it's set to RGB, which is the Red, Green and Blue components of color. So as I move this around, you'll see that those sliders are updating and the values are changing to reflect the particular RGB value these pair of indicators are focused on.
Another way to look at it and probably a little bit more intuitive in terms of the hue saturation value triangle here is if I switch this to Display as HSV, which is Hue/Saturation Value, now you'll see as I move the Hue Indicator, I'm only addressing the dimension of Hue you can see in the slider. The Saturation values are not changing. I'm only addressing hue then once again, if we go here and drag this along here, you can see I'm only altering the value. Same here as well. But I'm controlling one dimension.
When I get into here, I'm actually intermixing both the combination of Saturation and Value. Remember the farther we get to the right corner of the triangle, the more fully we are saturating this particular Hue and the farther to left I go, I'm desaturating and as I go up and down, I'm adjusting the value. So, the nice thing about this is it's a totally visual way to select color. So, if I want a dark blue, well I just navigate to blue and then I visually say well, that's what I'm looking for.
You'll notice we have two little squares here. The front one is the Main Color and then the one in the background is called the Additional Color. So don't confuse this with the way Adobe, they do this as a foreground and background color. These are used a little differently and when we talk about some of the other tools like Gradients for example, these colors become important in the way they work. But you'll notice within this square that there is a black outline and if I click on this one, there is now a black outline. So, this black outline inside the square is telling you which one of these happens to be the active color you are adjusting.
So, if I click on here and then start making adjustments, you can see that it's now focused on that secondary color square. When I click here, now I'm addressing the front-most square. So this tells me at any given time what my current color is and that is reflected over here as well. So, even if I don't have the Color palette open, I can still in kind of dashboard view, see what my current color is. But I tend to keep this open over on the right as I'm working. Another new feature of the Color palette in Painter 11 is that is now resizable.
Now why would you want to resize it? Well, it turns out that when it's at this scale, that's actually not a lot of room for all of the possible colors that are actually able to be created with this system. Internally it knows about all these colors, but you can't get to them. When we can now enlarge this, this actually gives me far much more of a scale to work with. So that I can actually get to many more values within this triangle, for example, and there is even more iterations or increments of color within the Hue circle itself.
So, being able to enlarge it is something that I'm not going to use all the time myself. But it is nice to know that when I do want to have really precise color control, I can temporarily enlarge the palette to be able to get to it. And if you do happen to have like a two -monitor setup, you may end up having this over in your second monitor at a larger scale for the purpose of higher color resolution basically with respect to the Color palette. Now, another new feature in Painter 11 is the little indicator inside of here. Actually it can be controlled by the arrow keys.
So, I'm going to click on my Up arrow and you'll see I'm now changing where that's located. So, by using the various left, right, up and down arrow keys, it gives me another very precise way to get into specific colors I want. Now, another way to do something similar is you can also go in here and type in a value. Now in respect to Hue/Saturation value, that's probably not as logical as RGB but somebody may say oh! This color is certain value of H and S and V. And then you can go ahead and actually type them in there rather than trying to play around with this and lock it in that way.
So, you do also have the ability to actually type in a specific value. Now you can only do this enlargement when this palette has been torn off from the main palette stack. As soon as you put it back in here, it's now going to become this smaller size. And you can't resize it because there is a constant width to all of the palettes when they are in a stack. This also does have an Options menu here, so I could hide it, which I can also do through the little x in the box. If you don't want to have these sliders here, you could turn that off.
This looks more like the older version of Color palette. You can also determine whether you want to Display as RGB, so I can click on here and once I open my Color Info back up that's now switched to RGB. So, you have some options in here that you can use. I'll just mention this now but we'll get into it in greater depth when we are discussing cloning and to be honest, I'll mention this enough to tell you that this is what I think of as a major point in Painter. We'll go into an in depth at the cloning chapter, but this is where you can disable this so that it's no longer using these colors as the current color.
It's instead going to use the current clone source and I just want you to understand that this is a very valuable component that we'll go into depth a little later. So, the Color palette is really a very major tool that you are going to spend a lot of time in and it really gives precise control over the colors that you are applying with your brush.
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