Color Week 40 explores Green Apatite Genuine. This is a fascinating sedimentary and granulating color that ranges from a fresh yellow-green to dark olive. My acquisition of the color was by accident – it was included in a boxed set that was on sale. I was getting started in watercolor and thought the colors looked like interesting additions to my palette. They were all highly granulating colors, and not understood or appreciated by someone starting in watercolor so they went to the back of the box… three years later I am beginning to use the colors with some appreciation.

Apatite is a mineral named in 1786. It is said that Apatite was often mistaken for other minerals and this tendency is reflected in the name which is derived from the Greek word apatein which means to deceive or to be misleading. Apatite is not a glamorous mineral, its primary use is in the manufacture of fertilizer. A bit of trivia: in 3rd-century China ground apatite was used as a pigment for the Terracotta Army.

As a watercolor it is acclaimed

Green Apatite Genuine is goreous for foliage…is a fabulous granulating watercolour…moves from brighter greens in soft dilutions to rich olive greens in masstone…


Before doing this research on Green Apatite Genuine I decided to use the green for a fall leaves sketch. Descovering the lovely range of the color sparked the interest in the color for this post. The granulation also reminded me of how lovely these colors can be, especially when using a rough cold press paper.

Granulation is by far one of the most interesting characteristics of watercolor to explore and Green Apatite has plenty of granulation and broad spectrum of hue.

As a note: my Fundamentals of Color class continues, this week working on Hue at the Value level. Many more scales and time needed to develop the skill to see the gradations within a hue. It all starts here.

%d bloggers like this: