View Full Version : Great Americans or Unisons

07-18-2005, 09:42 PM
I haven't gotten a set of pastels for my birthday yet, and wonder which would be the better all-around set: Great Americans or Unisons?
Sure will appreciate your feedback.


07-18-2005, 09:58 PM
Oh boy, what a decision! I like them both, but love the way the color range is laid out, the smoothness, etc. of the GA's best... I do like the unison's too though... but I would go for the GA's for sure- then the Unison's for Christmas!! Boy you have willpower, did you not get the easel either?

07-18-2005, 10:21 PM
CHRISTMAS???? That's MONTHS away!!!!

K Taylor-Green
07-18-2005, 10:38 PM
Hmmmmmm, decisions, decisions. Both are terribly soft. I guess I'd have to go with the best color selection for my main subject matter, Geraults! :D
Now, what do I ask for on my birthday? It's next month! :rolleyes:

07-19-2005, 12:43 AM
Great Americans. Hands down. I love my unisons, but i love my GAs more!!!

07-19-2005, 01:36 AM
I knew you'd become a convert, Cori! I really do think I could survive pretty well with nothing but fulls sets of Unis and GAs, tho. I must remember to buy lottery tickets!

07-19-2005, 02:17 AM
I think the GA's are even softer than Unisons. At least they seem more buttery in consistency than any other brand that I've used. But I love Unison's. Their size makes them a good investment, too. I just got a new set of the Unison darks II....and the colors are luscious.

Tough decision but seriously, I don't think you can go wrong either way :)

07-19-2005, 02:21 AM
I have not used Unisons but have used Sennelliers,and Schminkes. I just this week started using my new GAs. I love them! They are as buttery as the others but without the crumbliness and I'm not finding any hard grainy spots. The layout of the colors and the range is really nice and now apparently they are working on a 7th box of colors (78 new colors).The colors are bright and stay that way with no sinking in. It takes very little deposit on the Wallis I used to give the desired results. I didn't notice much dust off either. They seem to be slightly less expensive than the others too, and they are American produced. That said, when I can, I will be ordering Unison's darks and Terry Ludwig's greens to augment these areas of the GAs.
Have a fun time wishing and shopping. Whatever you get of these various soft brands you can't go wrong. I chose the GAs based on the GA thread a while back, and that I could get the most colors for my dollars at the best rate.

Kathryn Wilson
07-19-2005, 10:16 AM
I bought a set of GA's and what little I have used them, really like them a lot. I also bought quite a few Mount Visions and believe I like them better than Unisons. I find Unison colors to be more greyed throughout than the others - so it will depend on what subject you are painting and what color range you prefer.

Kate, I quite agree - I will be buying more Giraults - wonderful, strong colors, smaller stick, but you don't have to use alot to get what you want.

07-19-2005, 12:32 PM
I knew you'd become a convert, Cori!

Yep - didn't take long at all :) Now I just need those new ones that are coming out. I have been waiting by my mailbox for so long that I am sure I have grass growing over my shoes! :D

07-19-2005, 02:02 PM
Well, since her choice was down to GA's or Unisons, I thought I would not cloud the issue as I generally do- but I love the Giraults too, and actually prefer the Mount Visions to Unisons also- but there is always a holiday somewhere in the world for these sets too- the trick is to have an international calender :)

I hope the GA hards will come out soon though- honestly, I love all of them- the caran d'ache soft pastels are also nice- not many colors though but bright, big, and fat, and the wonderful little holbeins... whatever is in front of my face is what I grab for... but the money spent on Giraults was so much better spent for me for finer detail than on pastel pencils... when I make the mistake of starting to block in a large section of color on sanded paper with my little griault babies they go rather alarmingly fast- so need to save them for the finer points! Of course, the Ludwigs are good for that too.....

But my tendency to hoard pastels in the event of a fedex/ups/postal/lack of gas or whatever strike has the GA's coming out way ahead....

07-19-2005, 04:36 PM
One of the gals over in Colored Pencils mentioned the other day that she is a pencil nabber like we are with pastels...she sometimes goes into her studio and just enjoys LOOKING at her colored pencils! Well....I do that all the time with my pastel sticks and I think I've got her beat as far as beautiful colors go! Am I the only pastellist who has this abberation?

07-19-2005, 07:32 PM
Sooz, I look at my beautiful pastel colors a bunch- and still go to the studio postings and look at your beautiful setup too- mine just never quite look as nice, after the first half hour of moving into my front porch studio that is...

learning to paint
07-20-2005, 12:04 AM
It's nice to think in terms of sets, but there is an alternative. Make a list of the colors you want most from GA, Unison, Mount Vision and Girault, and then put an order into Fine Art Store or Dakota or whatever store you like. I'm sure they can pack it up pretty as if it was a set. I've gotten a few sets, and I always find that I use about 1/3 of the colors often, the others much less. So, individual choices are one way to go.

Merry Christmas, Happy Birthday, or, if you like, Merry Mars Landing Day (on July 20, 1976, Viking I landed on Mars; why not celebrate with the purchase of some pastels?)

07-21-2005, 01:45 PM
Thanks for the feedback. The decision was made for me. My precious red Doberman is gravely ill and a trip to the vet's took care of what I had to spend. Her heart is beginning to fail and she has a bleeding ulcer. She's been my constant companion for over 10 years and this is very difficult.


07-21-2005, 02:17 PM
Oh, I am so sorry binkie! yes, the Doberman should take top priority of course- sure hope she is ok...the big breeds just have a much shorter lifespan than the smaller dogs- I still am in agony over my beloved newfoundland- will say a lot of prayers for you both- I know quite well what vets charge... if every dog lover that has a lot of GA's or extras could perhaps send you a few? I bet I could find 5-10 at least, may not be perfect... PM me your address...will you be doing paintings of him?

I best scramble to add that we are exactly the opposite of 'rich', and all my stuff is still being paid off at incredibly slow rates through plastic... so apologize that I cannot send everyone that wants them a few pastels... just though it would help in this case, esp. if a few other people could send some... I am not supposed to use plastic anymore, so what I have is what I will have forever I guess!!

07-21-2005, 03:18 PM
Awwww, so sorry about your pet, binkie! Hug and pat her for me! Aging and ailing pets are so hard for everybody concerned. All one can do is be there and take as good care of them as possible, letting them know we still love them to the end. I hope your pooch gets better with medication, etc.

07-21-2005, 11:36 PM
Oh Purples, I am so touched by your heartfelt offer; it brought tears to my eyes. Thank you so much, but you need to keep your GAs. My Dober is the most important thing in the world to me, and she'll get the best care I can give her. And yes, I'll be painting her pic, just not now.

Sooz, Willie thanks you for the hugs and pets. Willie is very much loved and has always been our princess and always will be.


07-22-2005, 09:36 PM
Awwww, she's gorgeous! Double hugs to her! I do hope she's feeling better now! On a good note...we had two poodles with bad hearts...both began to fail at around 9 years old...and both lived to be just shy of 16 despite other health problems, so Willie has a long way to go, especially since I understand Dobies are long-lived too!

07-24-2005, 09:54 AM

Sorry to hear about your dog. That is an awful situation to be in. I just lost a beloved dog of my own last month, just sort of his 10th birthday,and now my 14-year-old older dog is having problems and running up vet bills as well. Very draining, but when you have taken care of them all their lives you can't turn your back on them when they get older and need more care. The other day I went to the store to buy some bird food, and my credit card was refused! It turned out that I had reached my credit limit - 90% of which was from vet bills!

Well, I hope things are better for you, and you can still think about putting your choice on your Christmas list.

Debbie C.

07-26-2005, 08:41 PM
Binkie- sure hope you are feeling better soon- she is watching over you even now from heaven...