Color Spotlight: Jadeite Genuine

Daniel Smith – Jadeite Genuine

Jadeite Genuine is one of Daniel Smith’s Primatek colors, meaning it’s made from the actual mineral it’s named for: in this case, Jadeite. I tried this one out to see if I might like to use it as a granulating green for foliage and other situations where green texture might be appreciated.

Experiment Results

Gradient: What I love about Jadeite is how deep and dark it gets; while some Primatek colors struggle with depth of color, this one is quite vibrant and easy to get a dark color from. It’s dark forest green in mass, nearly as dark as Perylene Green, and dilutes through a cool mid green to a pale gray-green. Something interesting about this color is the way it wavers between a cool and a warm green (i.e. more blue and more yellow), with some of the streaks in the gradient looking like Phthalo Green Blue Shade and others looking like more an olive green. This is especially noticeable in the dilute.

Opacity: I didn’t detect any color on the black line. This looks pretty transparent to me.

Glazing: Glazes extremely dark, near black.

Comparison to Other Colors

Primatek Greens (Serpentine, Green Apatite)

Primatek Greens from left: Serpentine, Green Apatite, Jadeite

Jadeite is cooler (bluer-toned) than the other Primatek greens. It is much darker than Serpentine; both Jadeite and Green Apatite get really dark masstones, though Jadeite’s is forest green to Green Apatite’s olive green. Both Green Apaite and Jadeite have a tendency to separate out gray flecks in dilute, although the “backing” color is different – Green Apatite’s being a sort of sage/lime and Jadeite’s being a bright pale mint.

It’s possible to approximate a Green Apatite hue with Jadeite by adding a yellow-orange such as New Gamboge or Quin Gold.

More Palette Greens (Phthalo Green Blue Shade, Perylene Green)

From left: DS Phthalo Blue Green Shade, DS Jadeite Genuine, WN Perylene Green

I’ve tossed around the idea (almost certainly inspired by Jane Blundell’s quote below) of building a palette with Jadeite instead of either Phthalo Green (as the mixing green), Perylene Green (as the shadow green), or both; but realistically I don’t think it quite replaces either one.

It is much more muted than Phthalo Green, especially in dilute, so you can’t get the range of mixing colors that you can from the brighter color (on top of which it’s a lot less predictable and harder to work with, so I wouldn’t want it as my primary green).

I also wasn’t able to quite achieve the dark darks of Perylene Green. With that said, Jadeite glazed much darker than I was able to get in masstone, so perhaps I’m not unlocking just how dark it can get.

I do think there is perhaps some scope to use them together – for example, I really liked the bold granulating green I got from PGBS + Jadeite. Having all three of these greens (plus a yellow) would make it really easy to mix up a range of granulating, lush foliage quickly.

Color Mixes

Lemon Yellow

Winsor Lemon (PY175) + DS Jadeite Genuine on Arches CP

Some of these mixes look like nice foliage mixes to me: especially the more lemony and saturated one. The diluted mixes lose the darkness of the green granulation and only have the pale grayish-brownish granulation that we saw in the dilute end of the Jadeite, which in my opinion is not pretty.

Rich Green Gold

DV Green Gold (PY129) + DS Jadeite Genuine on Arches CP

This is probably the color combination I was most interested in as it is what I would probably use for foliage, with the PY129 green gold being the highlights and the Jadeite making up the granulating shadows. Indeed, at its best, the granulation of Jadeite creates wonderful spots of shadow, similar to the way leaves can look in trees. However, it’s unpredictable; in some of the mixes, the granulation creates a “brown dust” appearance rather than those nice spots of dark green. I think the brownness of the Jadeite is also contributing to the overall mutedness and Sap Greeniness of some of these mixes.

What Others Say

This granulating pine-like green is a beautiful pigment. It mixes a bit like Phthalo Green but is much deeper in mass-tone, more like Perylene Green, and more liftable than Phthalo Green. Wonderful in foliage.

Jane Blundell

It is a wonderful mixing color. I would have this on my palette purely for how great it mixes with other colors and the rich colors it can create… It is an easy color to work with because it does the gradated washes very easily, however you do have to watch out for surprising peeks of bright green if you are using it as its lighter midtone.

Dr. Oto Kano

My Review

I really like this color! It’s probably my favorite Primatek. Although more complex and tricky than, say, Phthalo Green, it is easier to work with than most Primateks. It has a wide range of values and it’s relatively easy to reach a nice, dark masstone. It is still a little weird and unpredictable, especially in dilute, but it’s a beautiful granulator with a lot of personality.

I really like the unmixed masstone color, which to me feels like an evergreen forest. (It’s less useful in dilute.) This is a type of green that I feel I see quite a lot in nature.

Mixing is prone to error, but when you get it right, the mixes are quite lovely. I especially like the mix of granulating “sap greens” you can get with the various yellow-oranges.

I’m not sure how much I’ll end up using this color; for now it’s on the B team.

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