Blueberries. Blue berries. Translated through camera and internet, this is the blue you get.

And yet, even if you were an oil painter, the blue pigment available now, the one labeled ultramarine, is not the genuine one that you might see in a painting by Vermeer. It is an industrial approximation of a pigment that once was mined in Afghanistan and revered by artists for centuries.

Color. It’s complexity can be found in the actual surfaces that convey it. In the artwork filled with it.

And then there is the subject matter. Grass. A leaf. Blueberries. Are they ever ONE color?

What we see is layers. We see oppositional mixtures of different hues that combine to create a message of that hue to our eye. Green. Blue.

Or… we might not see green. Or blue. The color of the grass or the leaf or berry will depend on the time of day. The weather. The sunlight or shadow. Which is why color and seeing color is endlessly intriguing. It’s never the same. It’s always changing. Always.

Whenever I dye a color, I mix in at least one other color with it. To push it, to move under and through it. To add dimension and complexity. Depth.

Color. Mutable. It has that indefinable quality that resonates with who we are inside: pulling up past remembrances, offering a sense of soothing, eliciting feelings of joy…