Prussian Blue Pigment, Synthetic - (Contact shop to request actual ship cost for multi items)

(1)
$1.50+
+ $3.50 shipping
$1.50
$4.00
$1.50+
+ $3.50 shipping
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Item details

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To go directly to the technical information on this pigment, drop down to the 2nd section.
As a physical substance, a material in and of itself, as a powdered pigment, I think this has always been my favorite. I mean as a dry pigment, before you mix it with a wet medium. It's such a deep deep dark blue. Plus, it's "fuzzy", "furry", "fibrous" dark. It's absorbent. It sucks all the light that hits it, except some blue which it sends back, darkly. It reminds me of very very fine lamp black, soot, that's used for printing inks. When you looks into a container of that, no light comes back, you don't see any surface details, any dips or hillocks or surface texture (unless you have a powerful light source). I think it's the color, yes, black absorbs all wavelengths of visible light (and white reflects all). But also it's the particle size. I have two grades of lampblack. One is the printing ink kind and one is coarser. The smaller particle size presents a larger surface area and so is more absorbent. To liquids, for sure. But how about to light? I don't know if the science is correct, but that's what I like to imagine. The finer the particle size, the greater the area for that light to hit and get trapped bouncing around between those particles.
That's also how Prussian Blue seems to me. It's hard to see any surface at all. Any lumps or clumps, bumps or holes. I used the word "furry" above. The surface seems like that, like fine black velvet. I tested it with some light before I started writing this. A 150 watt incandescent light bulb (with a reflector) shining down into a three quarters full jar of this blue from three feet away didn't reveal a thing about the surface other than that it was a fuzzy dark blue. I think "fuzzy" is a good descriptor because it works with "furry", but also because your eyes are unable to focus on a surface, and so your vision is fuzzy and blurry. So there's another descriptor. Prussian blue is a "blurry" pigment. After the 150 watt bulb, I put in a 300 watt bulb, dipped out a little pile of the pigment into the lid of the jar, and at 6" away I could, at last, make out surface detail. I finally saw smaller and larger clumps and the uneven surface of a pile of dark blue powder.
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What about the technical details? I think they're fascinating! Prussian blue was supposedly the first synthetic colorant. Google, courtesy of Wiki tells you: "Prussian blue, also known as Berlin blue, is a dark blue colour that is artificially made. It is one of the first pigments made synthetically. It was accidentally found in 1704 by two chemists in Berlin. The dark blue uniforms of the Prussian army were dyed this colour."
The simplified chemical name is "Ferric ferrocyanide". It is an inorganic pigment. (inorganic pigments tend to be more lighfast, more opaque, and more often found in nature than organic pigments. The difference between inorganic and organic pigments is explained in an easily understood article here:
http://www.pylamdyes.com/blog/difference-organic-inorganic-pigments/
A list of inorganic pigments is here:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_inorganic_pigments
A list of organic pigments is here:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Organic_pigments
The Wiki article [ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prussian_blue ] says:
"Prussian blue is a dark blue pigment with the idealized chemical formula Fe7(CN)18, [but] this complex compound the formula can also be written as Fe4[Fe(CN)6]3·xH2O. Prussian blue was the first modern synthetic pigment. It is employed as a very fine colloidal dispersion, as the compound itself is not soluble in water. It is famously complex, owing to the presence of variable amounts of other ions and the sensitive dependence of its appearance on the size of the colloidal particles formed when it is made. The pigment is used in paints, and it is the traditional "blue" in blueprints.......
In medicine, Prussian blue is used as an antidote for certain kinds of heavy metal poisoning, e.g., by thallium and radioactive isotopes of caesium.......
Because it is easily made, cheap, nontoxic, and intensely colored, Prussian blue has attracted many applications.
{ I don't consider 40 to 50 dollars per pound as cheap!! } It was adopted as a pigment very soon after its invention and was almost immediately widely used in oil, watercolor, and dyeing. The dominant uses are for pigments: about 12,000 tonnes of Prussian blue are produced annually for use in black and bluish inks. A variety of other pigments also contain the material. Engineer's blue and the pigment formed on cyanotypes—giving them their common name blueprints. Certain crayons were once colored with Prussian blue (later relabeled midnight blue). It is also a popular pigment in paints. Similarly, Prussian blue is the basis for laundry bluing.......
Despite the fact that it is prepared from cyanide salts, Prussian blue is not toxic because the cyanide groups are tightly bound to iron. Other polymeric cyanometalates are similarly stable with low toxicity.......
Prussian blue is a microcrystalline blue powder. It is insoluble, but the crystallites tend to form a colloid. Such colloids can pass through fine filters. Despite being one of the oldest known synthetic compounds, the composition of Prussian blue remained uncertain for many years. Its precise identification was complicated by three factors:
1.Prussian blue is extremely insoluble, but also tends to form colloids.
2.Traditional syntheses tend to afford impure compositions.
3.Even pure Prussian blue is structurally complex, defying routine crystallographic analysis.......
Prussian blue is strongly colored and tends towards black and dark blue when mixed into oil paints. The exact hue depends on the method of preparation, which dictates the particle size. The intense blue color of Prussian blue is associated with the energy of the transfer of electrons from Fe(II) to Fe(III). Many such mixed-valence compounds absorb certain wavelengths of visible light resulting from intervalence charge transfer. In this case, orange-red light around 680 nanometers in wavelength is absorbed, and the reflected light appears blue as a result.......
Like most high chroma pigments, Prussian blue cannot be accurately displayed on a computer display. PB is electrochromic—changing from blue to colorless upon reduction. This change is caused by reduction of the Fe(III) to Fe(II) eliminating the intervalence charge transfer that causes Prussian blue's color.......
From the beginning of the 18th century, Prussian blue was the predominant uniform coat color worn by the infantry and artillery regiments of the Prussian Army.[16] As Dunkelblau, this shade achieved a symbolic importance and continued to be worn by German soldiers for ceremonial and off-duty occasions until the outbreak of World War I, when it was superseded by greenish-gray field gray.......
This Prussian blue pigment is significant since it was the first stable and relatively lightfast blue pigment to be widely used following the loss of knowledge regarding the synthesis of Egyptian blue. European painters had previously used a number of pigments such as indigo dye, smalt, and Tyrian purple, which tend to fade, and the extremely expensive ultramarine made from lapis lazuli. Japanese painters and woodblock print artists likewise did not have access to a long-lasting blue pigment until they began to import Prussian blue from Europe.
To date, the Entombment of Christ, dated 1709 by Pieter van der Werff (Picture Gallery, Sanssouci, Potsdam) is the oldest known painting where Prussian blue was used. Around 1710, painters at the Prussian court were already using the pigment. At around the same time, Prussian blue arrived in Paris, where Antoine Watteau and later his successors Nicolas Lancret and Jean-Baptiste Pater used it in their paintings."-
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If you have a technical question about an item we've listed, please don't hesitate to ask. We enjoy helping people out with a material or a process. We give anecdotal information in our listings if we have any. If you disagree with it or think we're being inaccurate or misleading please let us know that, too. If there are discrepancies in any of our listings let us know, we make mistakes like everybody and we'd like to be set straight and get those mistakes corrected.

I'm sorry, but at this time we do not ship internationally.

If you would like a smaller or larger quantity of a raw material, click the "Request a custom order" button and tell us how much you would like. Or just contact us and let us know what you'd like. We'll get back to you ASAP.

This problem usually occurs with multiple items. Where possible, we're converting to calculated shipping. We originally didn't provide it because we sell so many dissimilar items (size, weight, etc), that it would not be possible to do it accurately. If your shipping cost is high, you can do one of the following: If you see "Request a Custom Order", "Contact", or "Ask a Question" on an item's page, you may use it to request a reserved listing. You may copy and paste a list of the items in your cart, send a screen shot of your items, or simply favorite them, and request a "reserved" or "custom" order. Or you may do nothing. We will see your multiple items & will always refund excess shipping charges before shipping your items.

If you have a technical question about an item we've listed, please don't hesitate to ask. We enjoy helping people out with a material or a process. We give anecdotal information in our listings if we have any. If you disagree with it or think we're being inaccurate or misleading please let us know that, too. If there are discrepancies in any of our listings let us know, we make mistakes like everybody and we'd like to be set straight and get those mistakes corrected.



Reviews
Average review
(1)
Very pigmented when using with watercolors. The color is a true Prussian blue and is definitely 'fuzzy' like the seller describes. Very typical of this color but was easy to work with.
Jul 8, 2017 by Amber Smarpat

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