New Resene Blackest Black crowned the company's darkest colour offering yet.
Colour theory is an amazing thing, full of brain twisting facts. For example, we talk a lot about the effects that light has on colour, but colour itself is reflected light. And since the colours we see are actually missing the light waves of the hue we think we're looking at. This also means that what we collectively call 'black' is actually the absence of all colours – though not completely, at least in the world of paint.
Resene Group Technical Manager Mike Clowes says a paint colour can only be classified as black if it reflects less than 1% of incident light. Recently, he and his team formulated an even blacker black than Resene Black, the colour that specifiers would previously turn to when only the darkest would do. As it turns out, shaving down that last percentage is a very tricky thing.
Slat wall Resene Blackest Black. Floor in Resene Stepping Stone. Cabinet in Resene Nero. Large vase on cabinet in Resene Element, small vase in Resene Foundry, candle-stick holder in Resene Nero, board in Resene Blackest Black. Chair from Matisse. Rug from Baya. Frame tv from Samsung
"Blackness and light reflection are inversely proportional. The lesser the light reflection from an object, the blacker it is," explains Mike. "Since black pigment is the key component of a black paint colour, a range of parameters such as its particle size, concentration, surface functionalities and stabilisation influence the jetness of the black colour it generates.
Mike says that new products and developments, including the Resene Blackest Black project, are typically the result of a market need or gap. Resene has a long history of responding directly to trade and specifier needs. The decision for the company to begin producing the expanded British Standard colours (also known as BS2660) was driven by a request from an architect, David Launder who had recently returned from the UK and brought the colour chart to Tony Nightingale, who was Managing Director of Resene at the time. David asked if the company could replicate some of the stronger colours, but Tony decided they'd do them all.
Slat wall and side wall in Resene Blackest Black. Floor in Resene Stepping Stone. Cabinet in Resene Nero. Large vase on cabinet in Resene Element, small vase in Resene Foundry, candlestick holder in Resene Nero, board in Resene Blackest Black. Sofa and side table from Matisse. Rug from Baya. Frame tv from Samsung.
"Even if the need is small, Resene's sales and marketing teams may recognise an idea as having potential," says Mike. "Or, as was the case with our Resene Blackest Black technology – which, in this case is pigment technology – it was developed and made available by a raw material supplier. It then becomes our role to identify the potential and progress from there.
We are always on the lookout for new colour pigments that will either allow us to move into new colour space or pigments that offer additional benefits. Resene CoolColour technology is very good example of this approach."
Slat wall Resene Blackest Black. Floor in Resene Stepping Stone. Cabinet in Resene Nero. Large vase on cabinet in Resene Element, small vase in Resene Foundry, candle-stick holder in Resene Nero, board in Resene Blackest Black. Chair from Matisse. Rug from Baya. Frame tv from Samsung.
Background and board in Resene Blackest Black. Large vase on side in Resene Element, small vase in Resene Foundry. A4 drawdown paintswatches from left in Resene Nero, Resene Element and Resene Foundry.
For those keen to try Resene Blackest Black on an upcoming project, the colour is initially available in Resene SpaceCote Low Sheen, which was used to make the Blackest Black colour card. Mike says it is likely to be trialled in Resene Super Gloss Waterborne Enamel (which is formulated using novel waterborne alkyd technology) and over the coming months to expand the substrates the colour can be applied to.
Until then, the colour can be topcoated in Resene Concrete Clear satin or gloss for those seeking a different finish. Initially interior applications that will really benefit from the colour's depth, such as windowless theatres and cinemas, are the ideal place to specify it. Feature walls and stable surfaces like steel and concrete are other options, however it is not recommended to be used on surfaces that could warp, such as fences. If a surface such as a wooden front door is fully sheltered from the sun then Resene Blackest Black can make a stunning statement.
Top tip: Resene Blackest Black is available in Resene A4 drawdown paint swatches. Order swatches online at www.resene.com/drawdowns.