Monday, April 15, 2013

Challenge : M is for Magenta

M is for Magenta.

Magenta - or at least my conception of Magenta - is one of my favorite colors. It is the color of a robust red wine, of pomegranate seeds at the peak of ripeness, of the piece of satin ribbon left over from an unexpected gift.

Magenta can be other hues as well. It seems to range from a sashimi slab of tuna on the sushi-go-round, to a deep electric pink worthy of a black light, to purple as a plum. I'm sure if I asked an artist trained in traditional visual arts, they would point out to me exactly which hue is correct.

I remember from a screen printing class and my years of making silk paintings by hand and even the one intro to letterpress class I took that Magenta is actually one of the base colors from which many others are created. For example, making purple in a screen print happened by overlapping Magenta and cyan. I mean, I know you can buy many colors of inks and paints. But in the old school way you have three colors : Magenta and cyan and yellow. Oh, and black; four colors.

Color Meditations
I don't have a box of Crayola crayons handy to look at their version of Magenta. But I like my Magentas rich and deep and pretty close to that perfect balance point between pink and purple, with one drop more on the blue side of the line.

And Magenta is the color of my healthy blood when it first is coming out of my body for a blood test or a timed bleeding test. Especially the bleeding test which is an interesting experience I knew nothing about until about sixteen months ago when my doctors discovered that I have a genetic mutation which can increase the likelihood of blood clots. So I'm on a blood thinner medication. But my primary health care is "alternative" (naturopathic, acupuncture, chiropractic) and we have a local specialist naturopathic physician who is nationally recognized for his work in cardiovascular situations. One thing I have to do - in addition to the blood tests every four to six weeks to measure the medication level in my blood for my MD - is to do this timed bleeding test with my regular ND provider every few months. The basics are that she uses a special lancet to make a small puncture and we see how long it takes for it to stop bleeding. It's not quite like watching paint dry - but can be. The goal is for my blood to take longer than the average person to stop bleeding - ideally it's somewhere around seven minutes.

So when I say that Magenta is the color of my healthy blood, I do know what I mean. Sitting and watching it bleed (and how much, for how long), I do see the color as it comes out, which is a Magenta when it first surfaces, before more oxygen hits it and it starts to turn more red.

M is for Magenta.