I forget where I first heard about this book, but it ended up on the library list I keep in the back of my journal (which I carry around with me). It just sounded like something I would enjoy, so I picked it up this week. And, do I ever! Oh man, a full book with a survey of historical anecdotes about the origin of pigments and dyes?! Reading the book jacket, I was like, “Purple from snails, yep, murex… logwood black… American indigo plantations -Janine… fugitive pigments in paintings… [snap shut, tuck under arm].” So I’ve been curled up on my couch for more than a few hours this weekend reading about ochres, charcoal, ink and graphite. The brighter colors are yet to come.

It must have been so much fun for the author, Victoria Finlay, to do the research for this book – traveling to the historical sources of colors and investigating their cultural, historical and spiritual significance. Cool.

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