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Palettes: Old and New

Hand-held palettes have been used since the 15th century, though since then they have evolved in both shape and composition. Originally, they were rather small, square or paddle-shaped objects with a thumb-hole. Later evolving to our more current styles.

When large wooden palettes were most popular, people often painted on canvases prepared with a red or brown ground.

Paints on Palettes

Oil and acrylic paint can be used successfully on any palette surface. If covered with plastic wrap, oil paints can keep for a few days. When out of their tubes, acrylic paints have a relatively short life span.

Color Arrangement

Many artists find it beneficial to arrange their colors consistently in a certain order. Arrangements from light to dark can help form an understanding of where colors fall in context to each other, possibly tackling future color issues during the painting. Also, if you have more than one hue of the same color it is best to arrange them next to each other by a warm/cool breakdown and continue that layout with other colors.

Cleaning Your Palette

Another large factor in determining which type of palette you buy depends on its ease of cleaning. The joy of disposable palettes is obvious.
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