Friday 23 January 2015

More three colour mixes with De Atramentis Document Inks

I have explored a number of three-colour mixes to see how to make interesting neutrals with the De Atramentis Document Inks. Many can be found in previous Blog posts (search 'Mixing De Atramentis Document Inks). 

The first here are using the mixing triad Document Yellow, Document Magenta and Document Cyan and are mixed in the ratios shown. These charts were painted in a Stillman + Birn Alpha A4 sketchbook with a brush.

The following three colour mixes were created fairly randomly, but approximate ratios of each colour are given. Yellow:Magenta:Cyan. First I found some interesting earthy yellows, oranges and reds. The 5:2:1 is a possible burnt sienna option.
 These were interesting plum and purple hues
 And turquoise explorations
 I rather like these ones too.

In these mixes I was exploring what happens when you mix Document YellowBrown and Blue and its a lovely range of green-golds and olive greens and cool browns.

Here I was exploring Document Yellow with Green and Magenta.

And here I was looking at the mixes with Document Yellow, Red and Blue. These are some great yellow ochres and burnt sienna hues.

These are some other random three colour mixes using Document Cyan, Magenta and Brown.

 And these are created using Document Blue, Magenta and Brown.


  1. There are some beautiful mixes there. The colours appear to maintain clarity and intensity and don't look muddy at all. I think decent paper aids in that too!

    1. Annee these look a little 'backlit' compared to real life but they are fairly accurate colour-wise. Drawing with them in a fountain pen will obviously create a darker line. I am really enjoying them though I intend to use them for line work rather than painting - I'll stick with watercolour for that :-)

  2. Yes the subtleties of watercolours are hard to replicate with inks. However, it's great to find more inks that allow custom colour mixing and also work in a fountain pen. It's so useful to find these informative websites that have credibility. Thank you.

  3. I love these inks! Do you have any recipes for a color that looks like Private Reserve Tanzanite or pilot Iroshizuku Tsukiyo/Sailor Yama Dori?

    1. The Tanzanite looks to be a purplish blue so you’d use the DA Blue (not cyan) with a little magenta/fuchsia. I could tell you the exact ratio as all the googled images are a little different.
      The other looks like a turquoise and you’d probably come close with the same blue and some green. Or Cyan and a little yellow.
      If you want to explore, I think a good starting set is blue, yellow and magenta for mixing though you may also want to add black and perhaps brown to increase the range.

    2. Thank you so much for the response! I tried Blue:Fuchsia at a 3:1 ratio and I got a great Blue/purple. I am also looking for a great deep purple (like PR Tanzanite) and I tried lowering the ratio of blue:Fuchsia at 2:1 and even 1:1 but just got a lighter/paler purple. Any thoughts? As far as teal - I haven't played around with it yet. Any ratios to start with that you can recommend?

  4. This is a very helpful post.
    Thank you!