View Full Version : Question on Palettes for Watercolors

Little Bear
01-22-2001, 08:27 AM
I have seen and read about palettes with deep wells in them and you squeeze out half a tube of watercolor into the well. My question is this: is this method better for the professional rather than a hobbyist? What I mean is “professional” being someone who will paint every day and a “hobbyist” being some one who only paints 3 or 4 days a week. I worry that I may waste paint or the paint will become unusable sitting a few days. Right now I have a small palette that I layout just the smallest amount of paint and mix with water in the small well. When I am done painting for the day I wash everything up and put it away. I still end up wasting paint, so I’m very confused. I have just started working with watercolors and really do not know very much about them so any advice would be appreciated.

01-22-2001, 09:55 AM
Little Bear... this may be better posted in the watercolor forum..but will try to help you here for now.
Use a palette with a lid..or at least cover it between use. Wasting watercolor paint is hard to do, since all you have to do is moisten them if they are dry. The more paint you put in those tiny wells, the longer the pigment will stay creamy, so tiny amounts are going to get quite dry quickly - and can get grainy too.
A drop of water in each well every few days should work if you are putting them away for a few days. I usually just re-moisten each well as needed.
Hope this answers your questions http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/smile.gif Carol


01-22-2001, 10:04 AM
Little Bear:

You might want to also post this in the Watercolor Forum for input.

There are several theories on how best to use your watercolor paint. If you have a palette with a tight fitting lid, it is recommended for storage that you moisten the paints (either with a spray bottle, extra drops of water, etc.) and place a moist sponge in with the paints, then store the paints in the refrigerator. Personally, my palette consists of a mixture, some of the paints I let dry and then spray them before using again, letting them soak for a few minutes before starting, and some of them I squeeze out new from the tubes each time. Viridian Green is one of my colors that if I use, I ALWAYS squeeze out new, because it seems to get rather flaky if I leave it to dry first and doesn't mix back up well. If you do let them dry before putting them away at room temp, make sure they are completely dry before putting the lid back on, otherwise you may end up with lots & lots of mold. (See related thread in the Watercolor Forum, The Mysterious Yellow Mold I think is what it's called). Good luck! Oh, and my palette is from WalMart, it's a rubbermaid egg holder, it has 20 wells in it, plenty of room for my most often used colors and area enough to mix, PLUS it has a tight fitting lid, and cost approx. $5.00. It's a handy size as well, makes it easy to hold and easy to carry.

"There's a time when you have to seperate yourself from what other people expect of you, and do what you love. Because if you find yourself 50 years old and you aren't doing what you love, then what's the point?" Actor Jim Carrey (Side note, substitute any age as appropriate :) )

01-22-2001, 11:43 AM
I'm transferring this topic to the watercolor forum for greater reader participation.

"Everything is not art and Art is not everything, but it comes close."....carly