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View Full Version : Watercolor in it's many forms


SaraS
10-03-2000, 02:17 PM
Hi, folks!
I've done a couple of small landscapes in oil & want to try watercolor as well. Cna I have some feed back on the different forms that watercolors are in (tubes, pans, poweders, etc) & how they compare? I really can't afford to experiment too much.

Thanks

ameliajordan
10-03-2000, 03:09 PM
I really like tubes the best - you can make such strong yummy colors. I also have some 1/2 pans in a travel set and they are nice when traveling. Since you already paint, you probably know what colors to try so you might get 6 or so colors and see what you can mix up. Artist colors cost more than student grade so it depends on what you want to put out. Personally I think the good paints are worth the extra money. Also I get much better results on rag paper than student paper. Have fun.

Dennis
10-05-2000, 04:54 PM
You can also have a good time with water color pencils. Use just like a color pencil and then with a brush add a little water. dennis

kg7er
10-06-2000, 02:51 AM
I use mostly artist-grade tube colors--W&N and Schmincke. They're great to work with. I also have a large Schmincke half-pan set that is excellent. Cheaper pan sets, like W&N's Cotman kit are basically junk. Lotta filler, not much pigment. You end up wearing out your brushes, rubbing and rubbing to get a load of color.

I'd say, if you're just "testing the waters" with watercolors, and don't know if you'll stay with it, get a warm and cool version of each primary color, but get artist-grade paints. Winsor & Newton is usually easier to find than Schmincke. Get a tube of Cadmium Red, Alizarin Crimson, New Gamboge, Winsor Yellow, French Ultramarine, and Wisor Blue. And maybe throw in a tube of Raw Sienna for good measure. You can mix any color you can think of with this small setup. Also, get a 9x12" block of dArches CP paper. Get a decent sable brush, the larger the better. Size 8 or 10, at least.

You should be able to get the above items for under $100 through Italian Art Store or Mister Art. If you get cheap paints and paper, instead, you may be turned off by watercolors, and that would be a shame.

If you try watercolors with the good stuff, and still don't like it, you can probably unload the whole kit on eBay and only be out about $40-50.



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Ron Marshall (http://bsg-arts.com/jump.htm)

Yorky
10-06-2000, 03:33 PM
Hi, I usually paint on a fairly small scale and have been using W&N pan colours, but I have found that they get dirty from mixing colours and I have a problem with muddy paintings. Tube paints would seem to eliminate this problem, and by putting them out only as needed you are more likely to restrict the number of colours to 2 or 3. Besides it is easier to get darker shades. Hope this helps.

Chickie
10-07-2000, 11:32 AM
I use WN and Cotman tubes and whatever kind of paper I can get. All kinds of papers will give you different results so don't be discouraged by trying just one kind. Maybe get a selection of several different types to see which feels best to you. I even coat "Canva-Paper" with gesso or white acrylic and do watercolor on that. It's easy to lift off the paint for nice soft highlights on that.
I find that the smoother papers absorb more of the color and I have to dilute them less or the colors just soak into the paper and I need to reapply. The canvas like stuff has become my favorite -- a little tricky to work on as the paint pools and puddles in interesting ways, but it's also good for drybrush. I rather dab on the paints instead of stroking them. Stroking gives a flatter appearance with less "canvas like" texture showing.

sassybird
10-07-2000, 01:05 PM
I use tube and pan watercolors. The pan I use for light washes, and the tube paints for more dense areas.

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sass

gillyvu
06-18-2003, 12:46 PM
I use tubes, but one of my friends is absolutely in love with pan watercolours. So, it's all up to you.

pampe
06-18-2003, 01:01 PM
It seems expensive in the beginning to buy tubes, but they last FOREVER.

Check out references at www.handprint.com

and also go through the stickies and helpful hints up top here!

You can always start with 3 primary colors and then add as you go

Pam

magnuscanis
06-18-2003, 01:03 PM
Pans are very convenient for taking out to paint outside (you can fit lots in a small box, and most paintboxes come with an integral palette which is fine for the job as well), but I prefer tubes for general painting. It's much easier to get larger amounts or stronger washes with them, and to keep the paints clean. You can also make your own pans using tube colour, though I haven't tried that myself. For the amount of paint you're getting, they work out a fair bit cheaper too.

Artist's quality paints are worth the extra money, but if you are on a tight budget you can do perfectly well with good student grade paints like W&N Cotman (I'm only just now beginning to upgrade from these to W&N artists' colours, a tube or two at a time, and also making the switch from pans to tubes). The palette suggested by Ron is not a bad one, though I'd probably substitute Permanent Rose for Crimson Alizarin, and possibly make one or two other changes as well. Note that those are the W&N names for the colours. I'd also definitely put in a tube of burnt sienna - in fact you can get a long way with just that and ultramarine.

With brushes and paper too, it's worth getting as good as you can afford but you don't need to break the bank when you're just starting out. I do most of my work on Bockingford paper, which is a good compromise between more expensive handmade watercolour paper and cheaper cartridge paper.

You're bound to get at least as many recommendations as there are people making them. The most important thing, I'd say is get a small amount of reasonable quality equipment and then experiment a lot to see what you can do with it. As you get more experience you can add more kit as your budget allows.

javierroca
06-18-2003, 01:31 PM
I have to agree with kg7er
I have pans and tubes, pans are excellent for outdoors and tubes for studio.
At the beginning I had a small pan set W&N's Cotman kit and yes they are basically junk. Lotta filler, not much pigment. I thought was me but when I try artist quality grade the difference was huge.
So what I did is replace the pans for my own favorite colors in artist quality grade W&N and now is fantastic! I do not have to fight anymore to get the color out of the pan.

Kittengale
06-18-2003, 01:46 PM
Hi Sara, welcome to wc!

I use the Winsor & Newton Artists' full pan watercolour cakes, and I use their Artists' tubes for washes (as someone else had mentioned.) I am a colour freak, so I get every colour I can afford LOL - but you really only need the primaries and perhaps some earth tones to start.

Invest in a good wash brush, too - made all the difference for me when I did.

RogerPf
06-18-2003, 03:12 PM
Can someone explain to me why this 3 year old thread has suddenly been woken up?

I am not complaining and as always the answers are very interesting. It's just that I have this vision of deep in the future one of our great-grandchildren replying to (say) the first question we ever asked about watercolor.

It's a strange (digital) world.

Sylvielu
06-18-2003, 03:29 PM
Roger I think there are always new folks joining the group. Many have the same questions that might have been previously answered.

It might save time for an old thread to pop up now and then. They may provide help to those who want it.

Myself, I think its interesting to see the old replies. Many of the older replies are by folks I've never seen before. I wonder where they are now....

Kittengale
06-18-2003, 04:23 PM
Originally posted by RPf
Can someone explain to me why this 3 year old thread has suddenly been woken up?


Aaack! What a silly newbie I am. :p
I didn't even notice the original question was three years old in my eagerness to reply! But I am glad someone before me had bumped it up. I found the answers interesting, too.

laudesan
06-18-2003, 10:33 PM
Being new to water colour I am glad it has been opened again.
I have tried student paints, and cotmans, a couple of winsor newton, and then I found schmincke............
They are just heaven and do everything everyone told me artisit grade paints would do and more. They cost me $AU10.00 for a 5mil tube but as Pam says they last forever. And with the wonderful paper Christie gave me to try, I wonder why I ever thought of using cheap alternatives. Go for the best, and one gets good results, and doesn't get put off watercolours.......
JJ

magnuscanis
06-20-2003, 01:26 PM
Originally posted by Kittengale


Aaack! What a silly newbie I am. :p


Well, I'm hardly a newbie (just achieved WC! Minion status today, in fact :) ), and I'll leave others to judge the "silly" part, but I didn't notice the thread date either.

I'm guessing that somebody found the thread by searching for a relevant topic (or they were just really bored and trawling through all the ancient forum posts?), and also failed to notice the date on it. Anyway, as you and several others have observed, it's an interesting question with some interesting answers. I wonder if the original poster is still around to read them?

pampe
06-20-2003, 01:31 PM
Originally posted by RPf
Can someone explain to me why this 3 year old thread has suddenly been woken up?

I am not complaining and as always the answers are very interesting. It's just that I have this vision of deep in the future one of our great-grandchildren replying to (say) the first question we ever asked about watercolor.

It's a strange (digital) world.

and what is scarier....I'll still be here at this puter when my grandkids pull up my old threads:rolleyes:

RogerPf
06-20-2003, 02:05 PM
Originally posted by pampe

and what is scarier....I'll still be here at this puter when my grandkids pull up my old threads:rolleyes:

LOL - (literally)

gillyvu
06-20-2003, 02:06 PM
It was actually me who found the post, I hadn't noticed the date! I was searching for... it was wither Kurt Cobain or Buffy. I was bored!

Sher
06-20-2003, 02:29 PM
I use W&N tubes for home and when and if I get out, I use W&N pans in a travel set.