Color Spotlight: Green Apatite Genuine

Daniel Smith – Green Apatite Genuine

This granulating Primatek color made from real Green Apatite is a similar hue to Sap Green, with interesting green and brown granulation. Like Jadeite, it has a tendency to separate with some strokes being a pale yellowy mint green and some strokes being a gray-brown olive.

Experiment Results

Gradient: Very wide ranges of values from a super-dark olive green through to a mid sap green through to a pistachio-type yellowy mint green with visible flecks of gray-brown to almost a pale gray. What’s weird about this shade is that each level of dilution seems to have a slightly different hue and warm/cool balance – in the lower level of dilute, the green-to-gray ratio varies brush stroke by brush stroke! It’s not one with a predictable range of “dark, medium, light”.

Transparency: Looks transparent to me.

Glazing: Glazes to a very dark olive green/brown.

Color Mixes

I was pleasantly surprised with these mixes after seeing some I didn’t like online. Sometimes the mixes with this color seem to separate with the granulation flecks becoming gray/brown and not mixing with the base color. As with Jadeite, it seems possible to avoid this most of the time by using a high amount of pigment. There are still some colors where it’s an issue, such as warm yellows, which have visible brown spots in them.

  • Yellow (Hansa Yellow Medium, New Gamboge, Quin Gold): Warmer gold-greens with visible brown flecks.
  • Orange (Transparent Pyrrol Orange, Burnt Sienna Deep): Olive greens to taupe browns.
  • Magenta (Quin Rose): A granulating maroon that I do not like
  • Violet (Perylene Violet): A cool brown that I strangely love
  • Blue (Ultramarine, Phthalo Blue Green Shade): Deep turquoise greens. The very granulating mix with Ultramarine is especially lovely and looks like Jadeite.
  • Blue Green (Phthalo Green Blue Shade): The mix between this yellowy green and the bluey green of PGBS results in a middle of the road grass green that is also granulating.

Comparison to Other Colors

Sap Green

Green Apatite is closest in hue to Sap Green, a mixed green designed to look natural out of the tube. Every band has their own recipe for Sap Green, but it’s usually between a Phthalo Green and some sort of yellow-orange or yellow ochre equivalent (Daniel Smith’s is Phthalo Green Blue Shade and Quin Gold).

Other Primatek Greens (Serpentine, Jadeite)

From left: Serpentine, Green Apatite, Jadeite

Green Apatite is the middle green of Daniel Smith’s trio of Primatek greens; darker and less yellowy than Serpentine, but yellower than Jadeite. While Jadeite has the reputation for getting the darkest, I think Green Apatite is capable of getting just as dark, only it’s olive instead of forest green.

It’s possible to get close to a Jadeite hue with Green Apatite by adding Ultramarine.

What Others Say

I love this colour and use it often. Goes from a light green gold through a sap green to a deep undersea green all in one.

Jane Blundell

It’s a heavily granulating color with a very wide range of values. It does have a surprise green popping up now and then, and it can get picky about what paper it plays well with. As for me, I think I’ll pass on this color; it’s just a little bit too unwieldy and it doesn’t mix quite so nicely with other colors, and it doesn’t do well with techniques [such as salting and blooming], so this is a color that isn’t for me.

Dr. Oto Kano

My Overall Review

As with Jadeite, this is a tricky color to work with, one that sometimes seems to have a mind of its own. Depending on what you want, this “personality” could be an asset or a liability. As Jane Blundell points out, it’s multiple colors in one, looking different at each range of dilution. This could be great if you want all those colors at those specific values, but can be frustrating if you’re not in precise control of the water dosage.

A year ago, I would not have liked this color. It’s not the most vibrant. It’s very granulating, and the granulation tends to separate a lot in mixes and blooms. You get different values and color balances depending on how diluted it is. It’s easier to get a predictable, natural-looking foliage green from Sap Green, or by mixing your own muted greens.

Now I can see more upside. Primatek colors can create unique results if you let them do their own thing and be the star of the show. I like the idea of taking one swipe across the page and having a textured meadow, without having to delineate each shadow. I think the color is among the most natural-looking out-of-the-tube foliage colors in the DS line. I like the wide range of values.

I don’t love these mixes; it’s an unpredictable mixer, though some of them are really strangely nice, like the cool brown with Perylene Violet. On the whole I prefer Jadeite as a mixer; it can’t do all the same things, but it’s more reliably pleasant.

This one is on my B team for now.

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