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Highlight Red?

Discussion in 'Painting Techniques' started by Geoff W, Sep 17, 2021.

  1. Geoff W New Member

    I’m sure this has been covered before,but any advise would be appreciated. I enjoy painting Napoleonic British and never seem to be able to get the right highlight shade for red. I have used every pre made red colour set on the market and judges always find fault with the contrast. I never mix the red with white but have tried yellow with minor success. Any other suggestions?
  2. Ferris A Fixture

    Problem with white is the mix becomes pink, which is a cool colour, not contrasting nicely with the warm red.
    One way is to mix with a warm flesh tone, such as Vallejo Warm Skin Tone. This gives a somewhat faded highlight.
    Another option is to use the basic red, plus a little bit of orange to make a non-faded highlight, but use restraint so that the colour is not perceived as orange.

    I wouldn’t worry too much about judges’ opinions by the way, unless you really value winning competitions. Hobby is about avoiding stress, not creating it... ;-)

    Good luck,
    dmcHobbes, Redcap, DaddyO and 3 others like this.
  3. ivopreda A Fixture

    make darker version ( wih green or blue) of the red and use some chair tone to higlight it.
    very few higlight and after having mixed the higlight a smooth wash of red help to mantain the tone

    no yellow that move the color to orange bo white that make rose
    DaddyO and Nap like this.
  4. Geoff W New Member

    Thanks much!
  5. Geoff W New Member

    Thanks for the tip!
  6. bigtodd Active Member

    Yes, Red can be a pain... I changed things up using the premade shaded sets. I might use the first highlight as my base and go up one and down one value. Other times I grab plain red from different companies and see if i get contrasts from them. FORGET JUDGES, paint for yourself!!!!!! If you win an award it is just an extra feel good feeling. Remember an award is just something extra you have to carry home from a competition and then you have find some where to put it. I have too many shelves to show figures I have finished and I have no where to put my awards. BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

    Try the flesh color sparingly as mentioned above green and blue for shades but again sparingly....find a practice figure to see if one of these mixes throws you off the direction you are going for. The color red and the color yellow are my hardest colors to get right in my minds eye. When they are right they are gorgeous and I am very proud. It just takes experimenting to get there.
    theBaron likes this.
  7. Alex A Fixture

    Just a little bit of a yellow will do the trick, but just a little bit for the extreme highlights
    But basically, most of your highlight should be your pure single pigment red : either a cadmium red or a pyrrole red
    I prefer Pyrrole red which is btw a little be cheaper than cadmiums and non toxic
    theBaron likes this.
  8. Geoff W New Member

    Thanks much
  9. Mirofsoft A Fixture

    What " artists " painters said ;)
    To darken red add small quantities of blue mixed with a tiny part of yellow and green
    To highlight add some yellow
    But this in 2D ....

    I paint red Humbrol, wait, cover with scarlet oils, sponge away, add a tiny quantity of sienna in the " cavities" and blush them ( like women blush, round brush flat tipped ), then red and " blush " on tops ; no highlight
  10. Nap A Fixture

    Thanks to all for the methods , always good to have more

    I use a tiny bit of purple with a base red for shadows

    Hope we see the results of the red painting

    Mirofsoft likes this.
  11. fogie A Fixture

    Try a little sienna, Geoff.... tinted if necessary with a tiny touch of white. For the
    shade add a hint of umber. Don't forget that the tunics of other ranks were more
    of a brick red than scarlet. With all the vagaries of fabric dyes, wear and weather
    something pink, orange or even light warm brown would probably be accurate.

    Nap likes this.
  12. Geoff W New Member

    Thanks much.
  13. franck edet A Fixture

    hello Geoff,
    for my part (acrylics) i generally add purple for the shadows) and highlight my red with sunny skin tone ... adding it slowly helps a lot and without turning pink .
    kevininpdx and Nap like this.

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