confederate grey in oils

Discussion in 'Oils' started by gino, Nov 24, 2018.

  1. gino New Member

    Country:
    Belgium
    hi my name is gino
    and i need some help finding a nice colormix in oils for confederate grey coat
    its my first time painting a confederate soldier so if somebody has some advice for a nice grey and also how to shade and highlight the grey
    many thanks in advance
    gino

    happy painting to all
    kagemusha likes this.
  2. JasonB A Fixture

    Country:
    United-States
    You will find that there are many different shades of Confederate "gray". Some were called "butternuts" because as the war progressed and material shortages became worse, their uniforms were pretty much made out of whatever materials and dyes they could find. Officers on the other hand could have tailored, privately purchased uniforms that would be more in the true gray or even toward blue. See below for examples.



    [IMG]

    [IMG]
  3. Mirofsoft A Fixture

    Country:
    Belgium
    Basicaly, grey is a mix of black and white
    If you add a touch of blue the grey color is cold
    If you add a touch of red the grey color is warm

    Best
  4. kagemusha A Fixture

    Country:
    United-Kingdom
    Below is purely my personal viewpoint.....
    For the painter....grey is far from simply mixing 'black and white'.....which white....which black....there are several of each!
    Simply adding a red for 'warmth'....or blue for coldness is another minefield of....which red and which blue out of the many available to the painter.
    Grey is very far from any other colour in it's complexity....and...has so many possibilities beyond what other colours have for subtlety.
    Over the years....I have adopted an easy approach to using a standard (out of the tube) colour for the so called 'warm and cold' approach.
    I use Old Holland Warm Grey Light and Old Holland Cold Grey....as they are as good a starting point as any....and can quickly be adjusted with the addition of other pigments....depending on my need
    There is no limit to what other colours can be added to a 'base' grey mix....it all depends on what you are trying to replicate.
    When it comes to shading and high lighting....in very general terms....and for the best effect...avoid using pure black or white....unless you want very strong contrast....which is rarely the case with grey's.
    Jason has given a good example of just how many variations there were of Confederate 'Grey'.....none of which could be reached with a simple mix of black/white and red or blue....but rather....ochre's/browns and green's.

    Of course....if you already know all this Gino....please ignore my rambling.

    Regards

    Ron
    Blind Pew, Tecumsea, Oda and 2 others like this.
  5. gino New Member

    Country:
    Belgium
    thanks for the advice from all of you i will look what fits best and try to post my figure on here dont now if my pictures will be any good because i have no high end camera but i will give it a try
    kagemusha likes this.
  6. gino New Member

    Country:
    Belgium
    and to ron and all the others i'm just a beginner again i started o few years back but then trough private stuff in my life quitted for a coupple of years and now restarting again
    kagemusha likes this.
  7. Oda A Fixture

    A very sound and grounded approach to greys which I find very informative and useful indeed.

    Oda.
    kagemusha likes this.
  8. kagemusha A Fixture

    Country:
    United-Kingdom
    Don't worry about having a high end camera....I use my iPhone to good effect.
    Enjoy your return to painting Gino.

    Regards

    Ron
  9. kagemusha A Fixture

    Country:
    United-Kingdom
    Glad it is of use to you Oda.

    Ron
    Oda likes this.
  10. grasshopper Well-Known Member

    Country:
    Canada
    A guide to mixing greys for dummies so to speak can be had simply by looking into the pigments contained in convenience greys offered by the paint companies..check your bias..it’s seems the butternut idea takes it to a warm vs cold grey..follow Ron’s sage advice, start with a warm, or mix from the pigments shown..a convenience warm, cool grey is always handy..and mixing greys is a fun way to learn mixing with three colours..
    kagemusha likes this.
  11. Mirofsoft A Fixture

    Country:
    Belgium
    All good and well
    But remember : beginner , my info was basic beginners, all variations come by trying
    45 years ago
    I tried Humbrol black + white not waiting for drying time, finishing for the shadows with a marker pen
    And the cuirass/ helmet ; all painted mat black Humbrol, when dry,using a black pencil, scrubing with the pencil almost paralel to the surface
    yes trying
    Piqier 1 enhanced Reduced.jpg
    Tecumsea likes this.
  12. F Troop Active Member

    Country:
    United-States
    JasonB's pics give you just a sampling of Confederate uniform colors and Ron's recommendations are sound advice. You you had a specific state or army a web search may provide some examples. The late war Army of Northern Virginia were well uniformed include imported English cloth very rich blue-grey. Army of Tennessee had worst supply problems and would be likely have more "butternut" uniforms. The Trans-Mississippi Department even had undyed wool issues that are off-white. The state of North Carolina keep their troops well clothed throughout the war and still had uniforms in storage when hostilities ended. Quite a few reenactor suppliers (sutlers) have excellent cloth color samples (as JasonB noted) from various Confederate supply depots.

    In other words you have a wide open door in determining your Confederate grey. Just a note of warning, quite a few original Confederate uniforms tagged as "butternut" today were actually grey 150 years ago but have oxidized over the years to the present color.
    Blind Pew and grasshopper like this.
  13. Ronaldo Well-Known Member

    Hi Gino

    Some good advice there from Mr Ron C

    As an oil painter myself the last thing i would use for grey is black and white as there are so many combinations you can use.
    Another good starting point is Titanium white and Raw umber and again it depends on who's Raw Umber you use.
    Example : Old Holland will give you a warm tone and Vasari will be cool .

    Vasari as far as I know are only available in New York ; but they do sell over seas but the postage may prove expensive .
    Paynes Grey is very bias towards blue so just a tiny bit into the base mix of Tit white and umber will cool things down .

    Again with oils you have to find what works for you . Experimentation is the key
    kagemusha likes this.
  14. grasshopper Well-Known Member

    Country:
    Canada
    If price is a consideration..Vasari is brutally expensive..
  15. Ronaldo Well-Known Member


    Can Be Grasshopper :eek: but if you use their earth colours then they are not too bad.
    I have a few but not entirely convinced that they are worth the extra expense and probably will never buy anymore of them .
    Mind you their Video blue is special

    If you want a wolfs pelt grey then their Raw umber mixed with white is the bees Knee's
  16. grasshopper Well-Known Member

    Country:
    Canada
    I use OH and Michael Harding. As an illustration of earth colour varieties check Natural Pigments, Rublev...they specialize in such..plus crazy original Naples, Vermillion and stack lead white. Mainly their site and Painting Best Practices shows the range, history and usage..
  17. Mirofsoft A Fixture

    Country:
    Belgium
  18. grasshopper Well-Known Member

    Country:
    Canada
  19. Wayneb A Fixture

    Country:
    United-States
    Another fine example how a question from a beginner evolves into something useful for us all....(y)..
    Blind Pew likes this.
  20. brian A Fixture

    Country:
    Scotland
    If you want to keep it simple use Paynes Grey ,Titanium White and add Raw Umber into the mix.Shading Paynes Grey,a touch of Raw Umber and a touch of Mars Black.To highlight ,just add White to the basic mix.
    kagemusha and Helm like this.

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