Colour Mixing for Dark Skin


Dupont Art instructor Caroline gave a demonstration on mixing colors in order to obtain the right hue for dark skin. She stated that the actual color of the skin depends on the lighting in the room or the light  outside. If looking at a photo, it also depends on the surrounding colors which reflect onto the skin.

There are a number of ways of obtaining dark browns. Black, a cool, yellow and vermilion will give you a workable brown. You need remember the influence of  warm and cool colors  for mixing. Using yellow ocher gives a different brown to the skin tone. She stated that our other instructor Lucy, uses ultramarine blue and burnt sienna for excellent skin colors.

The use 0f umber’s is common and mix with blue’s or reds or yellows can give you different browns. When mixing the scalp and hair as in the photo, she mixed a pale rose beige color followed by whisking darker colors onto it as seen in the photo below.

The mixing is much easier with acrylics and oils. With watercolors, she never leaves the white exposed as white, but will lighten it with other light mixed colors before adding the above mixtures.