We are excited to introduce a host of new features and improvements to our Virtual Paint Mixer (MXR). These additions were inspired by your feedback and with the hope that it becomes an even more important and enjoyable tool for artists. So, as our holiday present to you, our customers, we are releasing Mixer 1.1 with the following improvements and features:
Color reduction is back!
This feature was taken offline while we worked on the updates, but now it is back with a vengeance! Once again you can reduce a mix all the way down to a single color with the press of a button. Even more exciting, you can now undo your reduction all the way back to your original mix! Simply press the ‘undo reductions’ button for each step back that you want to go!
Chromatic color order
Color swatches are now organized by hue (yellows, reds, blues, greens, browns, and neutrals) and displayed in chromatic order, allowing you to easily locate your favorite color.
Color name abbreviations
Abbreviations for each color are now right on the swatch, making it easier to know which one you are selecting.
Single pigment and color set palettes
A single pigment palette has been added to the available swatch palettes, and watch for other sets to be added in the future.
Image upload is back!
Users can once again upload their images to the MXR without having to worry about aspect ratios or manual cropping.
Until recently, mixtures have been shown as a volume ratio. We are pleased to expand on this by providing automatic volume-to-weight conversion for every mix! The precise mix ratios are calculated in real time, and displayed below the Target button. The ratio can be used for grams, ounces, or whatever measurement scale you choose!
Go to GOLDEN Virtual Paint MXR and try it!
21 thoughts on “(RE) INTRODUCING THE VIRTUAL PAINT MIXER”
Looks great! What might be very useful is the ability to select the paints you have in your collection (rather than the whole range) and then enter a RGB colour to try to match as close as possible. 🙂
Thanks Richard. The ability to store and work from a personal palette of colors is definitely on the wish list and something we aspire to, but in the meantime, we wanted to roll this out as we felt it represented a huge leap over what we had before. That said, we are definitely not done with improving this tool over time and adding features, and getting feedback like yours is valuable in helping us understand what folks value and want to see.
It really is a necessity to create a customized pallet, I only use 5 or 6 colors, I am no way going to have 100 colors in my palette.
We agree with you.
You can use a section and plug in the specific color range you prefer as opposed to the entire set of paint offerings. At the main MXR page, you will see 4 blank tubes. If you left-click on a specific color, then hover over one of the empty tubes with your mouse arrow, then left-click again, you’ll deposit that color into the tube. Then use the sliders to increase/decrease the percentages until you achieve the color you are after. The ratio will be listed and you’ll have your color match!
If you have any other questions, please let us know!
– Mike Townsend
Well that’s not helpful for me, I can not use a uploaded photo to create a target color. I want to use my limited palette, select an image, select a color in my photo, create a target color then have it try to mix my palette to match, just like the other option!!
Sorry to hear that option is not practical for you, R.
Perhaps you can use the Modern or Classic Color Theory sets of color, which are both palette options within the MXR. However, at this time, we do not have a way to create the exact set an artist prefers to work with.
– Mike Townsend
because acrylics dry so fast- which sort of goes with the times- i sometimes wish i could order my own color mixtures. i LOVE mixing paint! it is one of my very favorite things!
Hi Virginia – We know what you mean!! There is something just inherently satisfying about mixing colors, and glad that the color mixer can be a part of that exploration even if it can never replace the real thing. Anyway, if there is anything else we can ever do to help, just ask.
Hi Sarah – Is there any way to know the width of the color gamut for Heavy Body Colors (in terms of what colors can be made from mixed paint)?
I prepare artwork on the computer before applying those designs to canvas with Heavy Body paints. It would be helpful to know which colors I can use on computer screen that will also have the ability to be produced with Heavy Body paints.
I hope this makes sense?
Hi John –
Thanks so much for your question and as much as I wish there was an easy answer, the more honest reply would be that “it’s complicated’ and there is currently no easy way to guide you on what would or would not be in gamut. This is the stuff that not only dreams are made of, but full-fledged Ph.D. Theses! That said, there are some general things I can share that might at least start to map out the difficulties and show where there is a higher chance of running into gamut issues. Unfortunately what follows can get a touch technical, so apologies beforehand.
In terms of a gamut for our Heavy Body Acrylics, while we have not mapped that ourselves, thankfully the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) has used our Matte Heavy Body colors as the basis for a defined space they call an Extended Paint gamut. This is smaller but highly related to another color space called the Pointer gamut, named after a researcher who defined the range of colors for all possible reflective surfaces found in the world.
Probably the best place to get an initial sense for how these two gamuts compare to various RGB spaces is to point you to page 8 of the following document:
Keep in mind, when looking through these, that the Virtual Paint Mixer (VPM) uses sRGB to represent the color space of a monitor. We did this because sRGB, while based on the relatively smaller gamut of 1970’s CRT Monitors, can be rendered by nearly any and all screens being used in the world. That said, comparing the Extended Paint or Pointer gamut to some of the wider RGB models – used for things like high definition tv’s or retina displays in iPads – can be instructive as well, driving home the same areas of mismatch by exaggerating where things do not line up. As you can see, where paints are weakest is in the wide area of bright, luminous yellow greens, the hotter pinks and magentas, and even the purest of the cyan blues.
However, a word of caution is in order, since the above is only looking at how these color spaces line up at maximum chroma. If you start to take slices of these color spaces at different luminosity levels, you can see how the gamuts expand and contract at different rates and the relationship is anything but static. The best sense of this can be found by looking at the illustrations starting on page 8 here:
Unfortunately, these do not include RIT’s Extended Paint gamut, but the similar Pointer’s gamut is still shown as a light blue irregular shape. And for RGB, while they do not show sRGB, they do have Adobe RGB which, while larger than sRGB, can still help illustrate the general relationships. Adobe RGB is shown by the purple line. Each illustration shows these spaces at different L values, with L10 being very low in value and L90 being very bright. As you can see between L40-60 the Pointer Gamut is at its largest scope, but even then areas of Adobe RGB still extend beyond it. As the light value goes up and down, you can see that the gamut of RGB tends to extend beyond Pointer even more, meaning that monitors can show colors at brighter and lower luminosity with a far greater range than paints. Lastly, one more illustration of a comparison of our Golden Heavy Body Paints and sRGB can be found on David Briggs’ excellent site The Dimensions of Color ( http://www.huevaluechroma.com/015.php ) Look specifically at this image about halfway down:
As you can see, even sRGB extends well past the gamut of our Heavy Body paints, but there are also places where the paints are out of gamut in the opposite direction! Meaning that there are paint colors that cannot be captured by the monitor. This is something that we do not throw up warning signs around as the system will simply choose the closest match it can find to represent that color virtually on your screen, but it does mean that some of the colors you see will not appear the same as the paints themselves. One classic example is our Cadmium Orange, which is out of gamut for nearly all RGB systems, so even if you choose pure Cadmium Orange and compare the screen color to the actual paint, you will see that the paint is brighter and higher chroma.
I realize the above is a lot to take in but I wanted to share as much as I could in case you were interested in knowing the reasoning involved. And if you have any follow-up questions, just let me know and I will do my best to make it clearer. Also, if talking through these issues is helpful, let me know and I would be happy to schedule a time to call.
Would love to be able to renlarge the uploaded image
Hi Linda – Thanks for the suggestion. I will let the developers know and, if nothing else, we can add it to our wish list of improvements to consider. Hopefully, in the meantime, the tool is still proving useful to you and if there is anything else we can do, just ask!
Thank you for this very useful tool. great idea!
are there any special directions if I want to use it with Williamsburg oil colors?
(and… If this mixer just could output Munsell values… it would be perfect :D)
Thank you for your question. Unfortunately the Virtual Paint Mixer works currently only with the Golden Acrylics. It is our aim to eventually expand the Mixer to Williamsburg and QoR, however this is still a remote prospect. Adding a new set of colors to the Mixer involves a lot of work for our lab, IT and MAS team.
We have not specifically tested how far off the mixtures would be when using Williamsburg instead of Golden and this would probably very much within the paint line. We would appreciate if you shared your experiences, in case you will conduct some of your own testing.
Awesome! You all even included an easy-to-copy function for RGB & CMYK – which is just what I had requested. This will make it much easier for me to document my color palette. Thank you so much!
How do i access the mixer? When I try I get page error. Thanks
Thanks for your comment Walter and letting us know. Here is a link to the Virtual Paint MXR: https://www.goldenpaints.com/mixer We will update this article as well.
Thanks I am a color blind artist so every little thing helps.
It is great to hear that Al, we are glad this tool is helpful!
I really enjoy your color mixer and have lots of fun experimenting with it. But i have a few questions:
1. Is this still in developement?
2. Is the custom palette feature still coming? If not, maybe it would be possible to at least exclude some colors for the automatic matching?
3. It seems to me that the Single Pigment Palette contains some mixtures, namely Cadmium Yellow Medium Hue and Green Gold.
4. While investigating if those two are actually single pigment colors in some paint ranges of yours, i noticed that the “Mineral Spirit Acrylic Colors” Pigment Identification Chart seems to be completely messed up.
Thank you so much for your input, and catching issues for us. We are going to respond to your query via your email address, so it will be easier for us to follow up as we find out answers to your questions.