Hot on the heels of a post earlier this week about centuries-old guide for mixing watercolors, I stumbled onto this 18th century instrument designed to measure the blueness of the sky called a Cyanometer. The simple device was invented in 1789 by Swiss physicist Horace-Bénédict de Saussure and German naturalist Alexander von Humboldt who used the circular array of 53 shaded sections in experiments above the skies over Geneva, Chamonix and Mont Blanc. The Cyanometer helped lead to a successful conclusion that the blueness of the sky is a measure of transparency caused by the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere. You can learn more at the Royal Society of Chemistry. (via Free Parking)
London-based designer Yoni Alter has a huge line of colorful prints featuring overlaid silhouettes (to scale) of every major landmark found in different cities. There’s too many places to list here, but you can explore more in his shop, and many if his pieces were just on view at Kemistry Gallery earlier this week. Love that Colossal NYC print.
In 1692 an artist known only as “A. Boogert” sat down to write a book in Dutch about mixing watercolors. Not only would he begin the book with a bit about the use of color in painting, but would go on to explain how to create certain hues and change the tone by adding one, two, or three parts of water. The premise sounds simple enough, but the final product is almost unfathomable in its detail and scope.
Spanning nearly 800 completely handwritten (and painted) pages, Traité des couleurs servant à la peinture à l’eau, was probably the most comprehensive guide to paint and color of its time. According to Medieval book historian Erik Kwakkel who translated part of the introduction, the color book was intended as an educational guide. The irony being there was only a single copy that was probably seen by very few eyes.
The entire book is viewable in high resolution here, and you can read a description of it here (it appears E-Corpus might have crashed for the moment). The book is currently kept at the Bibliothèque Méjanes in Aix-en-Provence, France. (via Erik Kwakkel)
In this new video art clip from San Diego-based filmmaker Cy Kuckenbaker, we watch as a 4-minute shot from the Washington Street bridge in San Diego is deftly edited, sorted, and compressed resulting in perfectly color-coded traffic. Kuckenbaker notes:
The source footage for this video is a 4-minute shot from the Washington Street bridge above State Route 163 in San Diego captured at 2:39pm Oct 1, 2013. My aim is to reveal the color palette and color preferences of contemporary San Diego drivers in addition to traffic patterns and volumes. There are no CG elements, these are all real cars that have been removed from one sample and reorganized.
Liquid Jewel is a new project by Swiss photographer Fabian Oefner (previously) as part of his ongoing exploration of manipulating paint with natural forces such as sound, centrifugal force, and even magnetism. In these new images the photographer turned his attention toward air pressure by harnessing the power of the popped balloon. Oefner covered modeling balloons in thick layers of acrylic paint and photographed each one milliseconds after popping it with a needle. The resulting effect captures the paint as its driven simultaneously inward and outward. See more over on Behance.
California artist Ester Roi (website currently down) works colored pencils to create drawings of imagined riverbeds that exhibit a superb understanding of the interaction between light, color and water. Roi uses a special drawing device called the Icarus Drawing Board that allows her to effectively create warm and cool “zones” underneath a wax-based medium. According to her website “the warm zone is used for mixing pigments, blending, burnishing and reworking. The cool zone is used for line drawing, layering, detailing and finishing touches.” The careful layering of pencil and wax apparently allows for some pretty brilliant color work. Although her website is currently down you can see more of her drawing and painting over on Facebook. (via drawing pencil)