A drawing a day. All year long.
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Chalk. ...chalk has a long history of use in art. The Uffington White Horse, for example, is one of the stylized chalk figures created in Europe during the Late Bronze Age. It still prances high on a hillside on the edge of the Berkshire Downs in southern England. Amid fears that it might be used for target practice by the Luftwaffe, the horse was covered up during the Second World War. When the war was over William Francis Grimes, a Welsh archaeology professor, was charged with disinterring it.
Isabelline. The story goes that in 1601 Isabella Clara Eugenia’s husband, Archduke Albert VII of Austria, began the siege of Ostend. Isabella, believing the siege would be short-lived, vowed she would not change or wash her underwear until he won Isabelline is the color the queen's linens had become when the siege finally ended three years later. Luckily for the poor queen, proof that this story is nonsense isn’t difficult to find. From The Secret Lives of Color by Kassia St. Clair.
Whitewash During the English Reformation, churches and parishioners used it (whitewash) to obscure colorful murals and altarpieces that depicted saints in ways they now deemed impious. ( Over the years, as the paint wore thin, the faces began peeking through again.) This practice perhaps explains the origin of the phrase "to whitewash," which means to conceal unpleasant truths, usually political in nature. #dailydrawing #kassiastclair #whitewash #secretlivesofcolour @kassiastclair
Silver. “To extract silver ore from Cerro Rico, one of the two most profitable mines in their empire, the Spanish exploited indigenous labor. Using a version of the ‘mita’ forced-labor system the Inca had used to build temples and roads, the Spanish insisted locals over the age of 18 put in a year's work for subsistence wages. Accidents and mercury poisoning were common. The Spanish boasted that with the silver extracted from Cerro Rico, they could have built a bridge across the Atlantic back to
Ivory white. "In 1831, a farmer on the Isle of Lewis, in the Outer Hebrides, discovered treasure that had been hidden in a small stone chamber in a sandbank for 700 years. The hoard consisted of 78 chess pieces from different sets, 14 for a game similar to backgammon, and a belt buckle, The Lewis Chessmen, as they are now known, are mysterious. No one knows who made them, or how they came to be hidden on an obscure island." from The Secret Lives of Color by Kassia St. Clair
Lead white. "In the nineteenth century ladies could still buy any number of lead-based skin brighteners with names like "Laird's Bloom of Youth", "Eugenie's Favourite", or "Ali Ahmed's Treasure of the Desert", even after well-publicized deaths, including that of the British society beauty Maria, the Countess of Coventry." from The Secret Lives of Color by Kassia St. Clair @kassiastclair
Chrome Yellow. Sadly for artists and art lovers alike, chrome yellow has a nasty habit of browning as it ages. Research carried out on Van Gogh's paintings in Amsterdam over the past few years has shown that some of the chrome yellow in the flowers' petals has darkened significantly, due to the reaction of chrome yellow with other pigments in sunlight. Van Gogh's sunflowers, it seems, are wilting, just as their real-life counterparts did. From The Secret Lives of Color by Kassia St. Clair
Acid Yellow. The origins of the crude design (of the original smiley) - a perfect bright yellow circle outlined with black, two small lines for eyes, and a semicircular mouth - are contested. A crude smiley appeared in an American television program in 1963; two brothers in Philadelphia printed a similar design on badges some 50 million of which had been sold by 1972. From The Secret Lives of Color by Kassia St. Clair.
Orange. ...There is no denying orange's air of braggadocio. Godey's Lady's book pronounced it "too brilliant to be elegant" in 1855. Anthony Burgess might be thinking the same thing when he named his dystopian novel A Clockwork Orange in 1962. (He gave several explanations for the title during his lifetime : once saying he had overheard the phrase "as queer as a clockwork orange" in an East End pub; on another occasion implying it was a metaphor of his own making). From The Secret Lives of Color
Dutch Orange Balthasar Gerard was the Lee Harvey Oswald of his day. On July 10, 1584, he entered The Prinsenhof, the royal residence of the Dutch Rulers, and fired his pistol three times into the chest of William I, Prince of Orange, who prayed for mercy for the Dutch people and then died. From the Secret Lives of Color by Kassia St. Clair.