#65 Black & Blue

65-black-blue


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My favorite col­ors are black & “char­lie blue.”

Black is actu­al­ly my very favorite col­or & yes, it is a col­or. (See “chaz sez” below.) “Char­lie blue,” as my friends know it, is any­thing between Cray­ola Blue Green to cerulean to turquoise to cyan (one of the four print­ing ink col­ors). Amper­Art #65, Black & Blue, fea­tures CBG as I call it, cyan, and one oth­er blue which I’ll get to lat­er. All my favorite blues are some­where in-​between CBG and cyan.

I am not fond of sky blue, navybaby blue nor roy­al blue. They are cold. (Yes, I know, my very favorite col­or—black—is def­i­nite­ly freez­ing. But we’re talk­ing blue here.)

There is a very deep blue that does tin­gle my col­or bone. That’s cobalt blue. My first mem­o­ry of that col­or is my father’s blue cuff links. Also the knob on his steer­ing wheel to help turn the tires before pow­er steer­ing (that acces­so­ry became ille­gal because when the steer­ing wheel snapped back the knob could remove a fin­ger or two). & the cool red tail lights with the blue dot in the mid­dle, which cre­at­ed a mag­i­cal col­or effect.  They’re pop­u­lar again today but I remem­ber the orig­i­nals on my dad’s 1950-​something auto­mo­bile. Prob­a­bly no oth­er rec­ol­lec­tion of cobalt blue is stronger for me than the bot­tle of Vicks VapoRub. That stuff felt ice-​cold as the col­or of the bot­tle it was pack­aged in. I’m also par­tial to cobalt blue because it is the favorite col­or of my moth­er and my broth­er Rob. So that is the oth­er blue in this Amper­Art piece.

Vicks-jar-with-lid-circle

Just look­ing at this Vicks jar opens my sinus­es! Oth­er prod­ucts in cobalt blue bot­tles were Noxze­ma, Phillips Milk of Mag­ne­sia (sounds appe­tiz­ing, does­n’t it?), Bro­mo Seltzer, Nivea and Blue Coral.

In fair­ness to navy, roy­al blue, sky blue & all those that are not my favorites, com­bine them with var­i­ous oth­er col­ors & they cre­ate out­stand­ing col­or schemes. Of course, the same could be said for poop brown.

I am releas­ing #65 Black & Blue dur­ing the play­ful days of sum­mer, because that’s when I recall we’d get the most bruised up falling off our bikes, skate­boards, or just play­ing in the back­yard. I did, any­way. I was a real klutz. Still can’t ride a skateboard.


listen up! Black is a col­or! Not the absence of col­or, nor the com­bi­na­tion of all col­ors. It is col­or. So is white. So why do peo­ple say it’s all the col­ors or no col­or? Because they don’t know the def­i­n­i­tion of col­or. “Col­or” means the descrip­tion of the hue, val­ue & tone. Pure yel­low is a col­or that has a hue some­where between orange & green on the col­or wheel, a very light val­ue (high-​key, or very bright com­pared to very dark such as navy blue), & min­i­mal tone (gray­ish­ness; mauve & sage green have medi­um tone).

The col­or black is defined by no hue (red, yel­low, blue, etc.), the dark­est val­ue, & zero tone. White is defined by no hue, the light­est val­ue, & zero tone. So you see, black & white have no hue & no tone, but they are both colors.

If you want to have some fun with all the oth­er col­ors, check out the Cray­ola web­site, espe­cial­ly the his­to­ry & the Cray­ola Expe­ri­ence where kids (includ­ing big kids) get to play & cre­ate among all things Cray­ola, & see how they are made. If you can’t make it to the fac­to­ry in Eas­t­on, Penn­syl­va­nia, watch this video: How Cray­olas Are Made.

I love Cray­olas. (I won’t use any oth­er brand; the col­ors aren’t as pure, they’re waxy & they just aren’t Cray­ola.) I remem­ber when the box of 64 pre­miered, with the awe­some Built-​In Sharp­en­er. I prob­a­bly have the few stubs that are left of my orig­i­nal set some­where, but today I have The Ulti­mate Cray­ola Col­lec­tion — 152 dif­fer­ent col­ors! — on my desk. I use them fre­quent­ly, & always to sign impor­tant legal doc­u­ments. For that task, of course, it’s Cray­ola Blue Green.


PRODUCTION NOTES:
Original size: 20×30 inches
Program: Illustrator
Lettering: Hand-​lettered by Chaz DeSimone
Colors: Cyan, cobalt blue, Crayola Blue Green & black
CREDITS:
Vicks ad: flickr​.com/​p​h​o​t​o​s​/​2​8​1​5​3​7​8​3​@​N​08/ “SaltyCotton” has nearly 2000 photos of vintage ads in pristine condition. An ad designer’s or collector’s eye candy overload!
Vicks jar: Joe Corr on pin​ter​est​.com/​p​i​n​/​2​7​4​9​3​0​7​5​2​2​2​5​6​7​2​7​32/ and etsy​.com/​s​h​o​p​/​o​w​l​s​o​n​g​v​i​n​t​age Beautiful collectibles and antiques.
 

#53 Deep Dark & Mysterious

Deep Dark & Mysterious

Haunt­ing Hal­loween. This Amper­Art piece dou­bles as a Hal­loween theme & a pos­si­ble entry in my Adver­tis­ing Slo­gans series, as I vague­ly recall see­ing this a long time ago adver­tis­ing who-​knows-​what. We’ll let that be a deep, dark mystery.

Coin­ci­den­tal­ly, my main graph­ics com­put­er went dark yes­ter­day for no appar­ent rea­son. After unsuc­cess­ful­ly reviv­ing it after 4 hours of prob­ing & tin­ker­ing, it remains a deep, dark unsolved mys­tery. Which is why, hav­ing to use a less-​than-​optimal com­put­er for graph­ic design, this Amper­Art mate­ri­al­ized at the mid­night hour on Halloween.

PRODUCTION NOTES
Orig­i­nal size: 20x30”
Pro­gram: Photoshop
Fonts: Univers, Ush­er­wood (amper­sand)