Do you make student grade art supplies?

Specifications for Manufacturers

If we want kids to feel successful and confident when exploring color, their experiences with mixing and using color must be consistent with the theory we teach them.

We cannot develop a 21st Century color curriculum without student grade CMY primaries.
We need your help!

Expanding ROYGBV with Cyan and Magenta

Adding Cyan and Magenta expands the range of colors that students can use.

Once these colors are widely available, students can learn color mixing using both tradition RYB and modern CMY primaries.


Teaching Color Mixing in the Color Explorer Classroom

Primary Cyan and Primary Magenta are available in student grade art materials.

CMY primaries are be labeled Primary Cyan, Primary Magenta and Primary Yellow.

CMY primary pigments and values are standardized for use as teaching primaries.


Set of 12 Colors for the Color Explorer Classroom

Draft Specifications for CMY Teaching Colors

Updated 2/12/16

Label Pigment Name Pigment # Value
Primary Magenta Quinacridone Magenta PR 122 L 35
Red Pyrrole Red PR 254 L 40
Orange Perinone Orange PO 43 L 65
Primary Yellow Hansa Yellow Light PY 3 L 90
Yellow Green Convenience Mix 9:1 PY 3 + PG 7 L 65
Blue Green Phthalocyanine Green PG 7 L 40
Primary Cyan Phthalocyanine Blue PB 15:3 L 35
Blue Ultramarine Blue PB 29 L 25
Violet Dioxazine Purple PV 23 L 25
White Titanium White PW 6 -
Brown Burnt Umber PBr 7 -
Black Mars Black PBk 11 -


Frequently Asked Questions

What can manufacturers do to help? We need Cyan, Magenta, and Yellow primaries to be produced and standardized in all media so that students' experiences with mixing color are consistent with the concepts they are taught. We cannot successfully teach the concept of primary colors without primaries that mix to make clear secondary colors.

What is the difference between artist grade and student grade? Artist grade materials are not appropriate for young students because they are too dark, too expensive, and need to be available in classroom-size containers. Student grade colors need to be slightly thinned in order to work. In particular, artist grade Cyan (Phthalo Blue) and Magenta (Quin Magenta) are too dark out of the tube. 

Why differentiate between CMY and CMYK? The CMY paint primaries are the same hues but not the same values as the CMYK print primaries. The CMYK system for printing uses transparent ink primaries, which means that the same color in paint needs to be tinted to match the printed version. This results in paint colors that have too much white in them to be used as mixing primaries.

Can you give me more information? Yes! Please send us a message.