View Full Version : Brands of Watercolour Paint?

06-17-2001, 01:07 AM
Hi! I'm wondering what brands of watercolour paint others use. I've looked for "Windsor & Newton" at local art stores, but they don't carry them in sets at all. (To begin with, I wanted a basic set cuz it's usually much cheaper to start out that way!)
Is "Venezia" a brand anyone has used? Is it any good?
The paints I have now are "Liberty" and I don't like them at all! The paint has separeated in the tube and comes out as liquidy stuff and jello-y stuff!
Any suggestions? http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new. - Albert Einstein
Creativity is allowing oneself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep. - Scott Adams

06-17-2001, 02:21 AM
Hey Kandiman,
Some of the student colours are quite good to get started with and also less expensive to buy and actually their quality is getting better by the day.
Some you may like to try. WN Cotman. Daler Rowney Georgian, Royal Talens Van Gogh, Lefranc Bourgoise Louvre.
I like the Cotman and the Georgian at the moment as I was given a field set of Georgian half pans for my birthday.
Same with paper,try some of the water colour papers that are around for students such as Bockingford 300grms(140lb)( Taghera's favourite), if you dont work too big you dont have to stretch your paper to stop it cockling.
Need any further help, give us an e-mail. And dont forget.....Paint like a Millionaire.( If you can afford to LOL)
Billyg http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/biggrin.gif http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/biggrin.gif http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/biggrin.gif http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

06-17-2001, 12:56 PM
Hi Kandiman,

Most of my experience up to now has been in oils, but I am witching to watercolours. One thing I learned the hard way in oils is buy the best paints you can afford and the best (in this case) paper you can afford. In oils I started out buying cheap paints and canvas boards -- I have since thrown it all away. So when I started into watercolours I bought the best I could afford and am glad I did. The better 'stuff' is just easier to work with.

Good Luck,


06-17-2001, 10:53 PM
Hi, I have been using WN Cotman paint in a cake form. I just bought WN artist tube paints and can tell you there is a big difference in color when mixing. Rod gave me a list of basic colors to use and I find with them I can mix almost any color I want. check out cake vs tube thread here.

06-18-2001, 02:36 AM
If price is an issue, I recommend Grumbacher's Academy student grade. Very good product and many colors with excellent lightfastness.

06-18-2001, 08:34 AM
I never tried good quality materials until I was in my early twenties. Then I did it because I was giving a painting as a gift. What a difference!!!! I truly believe if I had started buying the good stuff in my mid-teens it would have made a significant impact on my life. To make a long story short - bad student grade materials can very much hinder your progress.

I use tube WN. If cost is an issue, you can limit your pallete. For portraiture all I use is 3 colors which I buy in the big tubes so cost per ounce is smaller. The colors are WN Permanant Alizarin Crimson, WN Blue (red shade), and WN Yellow. They are high stain so a little bit goes a long way.

06-18-2001, 11:06 AM
Thanks, everyone, for the tips. :D
I'm still wondering about "Venezia". Anyone used it? :confused:
The name "Maimeri" is also on the box - probably the company name. I think they make "MaimeriBlue" too.
My local art store has what appears to be a great deal on these - 15 mL tubes for like $3.50 each. I don't want to waste the money, though, if they're going to be like the other paints I bought. :mad:
Are these student paints, and that's why they're less expensive?
The WN paints are about 5 mL tubes for $8 - $15! I'm willing to spend it is I can't find anything good that's cheaper, but you know, always looking for the best deal... :rolleyes:

06-18-2001, 12:47 PM
I'm lucky to have a wc hobby with our finances,so when it came to buying,my dh bought me the W&N cotman watercolours palette set with 10 8ml tubes of paint.:)

06-18-2001, 01:13 PM
Check eBay. You can sometimes get a good W&N Artists 10 tube set for fairly cheap ($20-$30).


06-18-2001, 08:21 PM
I have used the Maimeriblu watercolors and really like them.
I believe the Venezia is a student grade of Maimeri. Gosh, for that price, I'ld give it a try and buy 3 or 4 tubes of basic color.

I stick with the 300 lb. paper...no soaking or stretching. Just lay it down and paint when you're ready. It costs just a little more, but if you buy 10 sheets at a time, you get a good break on the price.


Mary Kay
06-19-2001, 04:21 PM
I had used winsor newton professional paints for several years, but have switched some colors to DaVinci paints. they are about the same price as the WN, $6-12 a tube, but instead of 14ml of the WN you get 35ml of the DV, and the quality is excellent.

I've never seen the DaVinci brand in art stores, but I'm in a rural area. I just order them a few times a year from dick blick or cheap joes.

student paints are less expensive because they have more filler and less pure pigment. sometimes they are a mix instead of a pure color. for instance, cerulean blue can be made from thalo blue and white in a student brand, but then it is very chalky, and doesn't behave very well. the genuine cerulean is a wonderful warm blue hue that replicates a september fall sky, creates a great sedimentary texture under certain circumstances, but is also opaque. the DV cerulean blue is closer to cobalt blue, and the WN is closer to a blue-green. it's just what you get used to, so I use the WN for that color.

I think it is ok to use the student brands, but if you find one particular color very frustrating, switch to the professional grade, or to a new brand. If you are looking for a 'first' professional grade color, choose cerulean blue. it will make a big difference.

06-20-2001, 03:06 AM
I've always used W&N paints, started with cotman but soon changed to artist quality. Combined with Arches or saunders paper it seems to suit my style.
Quite a few of our society members use the Maimeriblu watercolors and like them especially a colour called "Dragons Blood" apparently more friendly than Light Red.
My advice would be to buy the best paint and paper you can ,or you will be dissappointed with the results. When you could be producing far superior work ,

Rose Queen
06-25-2001, 12:25 AM
This doesn't speak to preferences, but if you haven't checked out http://www.handprint.com, you really should see the research there on watercolors, paper, etc.

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06-25-2001, 12:51 PM
Thanks, Rose Queen, that's a great link!
Thanks you to everyone else too, for your advice. :D
I did buy some of the Venezia paints to try them out, and they're much nicer than the other ones I had. (It wasn't too hard to get better than that junk, but ...) They're probably "student quality" but that's fine for me right now. :)

Thanks again for all the tips and suggestions! :D