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View Full Version : Why Gouache? Benefits? Why do you like it?


nancymae
08-25-2006, 05:32 PM
Hi everyone,

I have just begun in gouache and I am having a hard time determining its special properties. I have worked in oils, watercolors and acrylics in the past. I have heard great things about gouache...and bought a small set. Used it as a watercolor and then used it like an oil.

There is some great work already out here...so I want to learn more about gouache from you experts!

Thank you in advance for any help you can give. Oh...I'm using a set from Graham.

Nancy

JamieWG
08-25-2006, 07:34 PM
Why do I like it? Oh, let me count the ways!

Goauche has the opague qualities of oil, but with easy cleanup.
Gouache has the water solubility of acrylic, without drying on and ruining my brushes.
Gouache has the travel capability and setup ease of watercolor, without such a strong need to plan and reserve whites.
Gouache can transcend the boundaries of many mediums---do a wash like a watercolor, blend like an oil, and drybrush like acrylic.
If the paint dries on the palette, you can just spray with water and it's good to go!
Gouache paintings are oh-so-easy to photograph because they dry to a matt finish and there's no light glare off the painting.
Since it's almost instant dry, like watercolor, you can paint, mat, frame and hang in a day!

What's not to love? :D

Jamie

nancymae
08-26-2006, 12:13 AM
Very cool Jamie!! I had NO IDEA!! It's an all purpose medium! I like the idea of not reserving whites. I have a hard time with that in w/c.

Thanks for your input!

Nancy

Richard Saylor
08-26-2006, 03:12 AM
Wow! Jamie has covered all the main advantages of gouache.

What I especially like about it is that it is so relaxing, kinda like colored pencils. You don't worry too much about making a mistake, and you can always just take your time, unless you are in a frantic race with the sun (i.e., plein air painting ;) ). If someone rings the doorbell, you can go answer it without worrying about the paint drying on the palette or your brush.

Richard

Dallen
08-26-2006, 12:40 PM
Does gouache have the same problems that require a rigid support like Casein does?

Richard Saylor
08-27-2006, 08:02 AM
Does gouache have the same problems that require a rigid support like Casein does?It is not as critical an issue with gouache. For thick paint applications a rigid support is best. However, most people apply it thinly, so that there is no three-dimensional texture to the brushstrokes. I get by just fine with watercolor paper.

Richard

IrishRose
08-27-2006, 11:28 AM
Thank you all for such great information about gouache. I have never gotten into the medium, but tried watercolors (very difficult) and acrylics (not workable and user friendly enough). I think this is just the thing I need, the best of both worlds and easy cleanup! Going to order a few as Richard mentioned above as the primary palette! Should be fun! :)

ash204
08-28-2006, 05:53 PM
I love acrylics for big abstracts, and am getting some great effects with them, but I just can't get them to work for me with small, detailed work. I love the way gouache flows well, dries quickly but can be workedback into, and can be thinned for washes.

I remember art tutors deriding gouache as 'poster paint', and implying that only video installations were real artists tools...how right they were ...:lol:

Well, I got over that (any threads on damage inflicted by art schools?) and have enjoyed using gouache again recently, it has many subtleties and deserves better standing than it has.

Meisie
08-30-2006, 01:30 PM
Is gouache typically framed behind glass like watercolour? Or can it be used on panel and varnished like oils/acrylics?

Meisie

FriendCarol
08-30-2006, 01:52 PM
Gouache was used primarily by illustrators, though, because it has (had?) relatively poor archival qualities. Was great for work that was intended for printing, basically. Has this changed?

I'm still planning to stick to "transparent w/c" -- after investing 2+ years learning to twist my mind around how to think in wc! -- but I have a small set of gouache tube paints. Haven't used them yet, but I might, someday. :)

dbclemons
08-30-2006, 02:27 PM
Gouache paintings can be very archival, if properly cared for, which can be said of any mediums. I would not recommend they be varnished, as it changes the unique look they have when dry. The handprint (http://www.handprint.com/HP/WCL/pigmt7.html)site gives a good history of it.

mark sg
09-04-2006, 11:53 AM
Hi there, my pennies worth:
I have seen Graham Sutherlands, John Pipers etc. in Gouache and they look fine. I used to be hung up on material appropiateness etc but now I just do it. If Museum reputed artists can paint with coffee, blood, or whatever they want, then its not the main issue, If you like gouche then use it. A technical illustrator enthused over the creamy consistency of his gouache mix to me explaining that its all in the consistency, that was 20 years ago. I started using the stuff about five years ago and found that a consistancy roughly the same as cryla flow acrylics produces the right effect. Gouache has the strange property of luminence and opacity together which is why I use it for landscapes. Gouache is flat flat when it dries and is great for a graphic effect, which you can find in dufy (and maybe matisse?) Regarding watercolours, Turner used opaque white, Its no sin. Though technique is important it will develop with time. I try to avoid over working as it is solluble and you can end up withdirty colours or difficulty handling tone. I start with darks and end up with lights, finding it easier to subtly alter highlights but that might be just me. Like watercolours I think it helps to know where you are going to end up. Gouache is also good for working with colour pencils and for quick sketching and colour referencing slap it down work, like poster paint and feltips. I exhibited a piece glass framed with a propper card mount and the organisers seemed appy enough with that! so I guess its like watercolour presentation/whatever looks good! All the pieces I´ve seen have been on paper and card but that reflects by experience and is definately not exclusive. hope this isnt too long! Oh yeah, I like the smell!

mark

JamieWG
09-04-2006, 12:45 PM
Gouache was used primarily by illustrators, though, because it has (had?) relatively poor archival qualities. Was great for work that was intended for printing, basically. Has this changed?

Carol, some of even the finest "artist quality" gouache companies have some colors that are not lightfast. You have to check the ASTM info on the colors you buy/use.

I think that because illustrators only needed a painting to last long enough to scan/photograph it, archival longevity was not a consideraton. Fortunately, some of the companies have finally started treating it like a medium that has to stand the test of time. I've been able to find a lightfast version of every color I need.

If painted thickly on paper, it can crack easily if the paper is bent. However, with thin application, it's fine, especially when matted with a backboard for protection. Illustration board is a great surface for gouache, but is not archival. Rag matboard is great. All supports can be acrylic primed if you prefer not to work with such an absorbant surface. I haven't used it on panel, but I can't imagine any problem with a hardboard support with acrylic primer. You'd have to use a spacer when framing though, to keep the paint off the glass.

Jamie

Richard Saylor
09-04-2006, 11:24 PM
Gouache was used primarily by illustrators, though, because it has (had?) relatively poor archival qualities.The pigment load of professional quality gouache is as high as that of transparent watercolor, often higher, and the binder for the two mediums is the same - gum arabic.

For the same pigment, gouache may have even better archival properties than transparent watercolor since it it is generally applied more thickly. (Obviously, a thin wash of alizarin crimson will fade much more quickly than a thick layer.) As regards fugitive colors used in gouache, see Jamie's post.

The bad news is that transparent watercolor probably produces the most fragile paint film of all standard painting mediums. However, the good news is that it doesn't matter so much, provided the paintings are given the proper care.

Richard

pati123
01-19-2007, 08:51 PM
hi everybody,

i just joined the forum and i'm not sure i know what i'm doing, well, we'll see.
the debate on gouache caught my eye since i paint mostly in casein as an underpainting, gouache or oil as final painting. ive used every brand of gouache there is and finally settled on graham and schminke. they are pure pigments, flow easily and dry uniformly. i've used the same w/n brushes for 25 years. i was lucky and was married to a man who supported my efforts. he had the money to buy a few series 7 brushes. they're worth every penny, as long as you take care of them. they've been uses exclusively for gouache for all those years and still are springy and easy to control. i imagine performens are good too, and they're a lot less expensive.

if you're curious about gouache, get some primary and secondary colors. that's all you'll need for a while. save your money and get graham. they're made for fine artists (as are schminke) and are just barely affordable. the cheaper paints are pretty bad examples of what you can do with this paint.

Gouache can also be used in an airbrush, which also is open to interpretation. just because "they" say these things should be used "blah, blah, blah", don't listen. use them the way you want to. there's no paint police.

regards,

pati

Keith2
01-20-2007, 09:03 AM
I've been using gouache for about two months. It's clean and not too messy, compared with oil or acrylics.

I find the colours rather weak (I use Winsor and Newton) compared to acrylic. Gouache doesn't seem to have much covering power and I reckon it's a lot more expensive than other opaque artists quality paints.

I'm still experimenting with it.

pati123
01-22-2007, 10:36 AM
hi keith,

winsor newton are weak pigments because they're cheap. that's what we used in design classes in illustration school. they're not good paints but are used by designers and illustrators because they are cheap but reproduce well. for fine art you need a paint with more qualities and less chalk. they're expensive, especially when you think of the small tubes they come in, but they're heavily pigmented, bright, opaque and have better permanence than winsor newton. i just paid $20.00 for a tube of shminke. graham is a great paint and isn't as expensive. holbein also makes an artist grade gouache and they also have an acrylic line. of course, they're more permanent, cover well and are water-proof. their colors aren't as bright and true as graham and especially schminke. excuse me for going on and on about gouache, but i've used it for fine art for years, and my gouache paintings sell better than my oils.

pati

meglyman
01-22-2007, 07:22 PM
Pati,

Thanks for "going on and on!" Advice from an experienced gouache artist is appreciated. I've been using Holbein because, from what I read, it was fairly good quality and reasonably priced. But I had no idea who was on top.. never even heard of Schminke before. Thanks!

Meg

Keith2
01-23-2007, 04:06 AM
Pati123, I didn't realise that W and N gouache paints are considered to be cheap.

I read a comparison of half a dozen Gouache makes in a magazine a couple of years ago and W and N came out well.

Could you post one of your gouaches on this thread?

pati123
01-24-2007, 06:31 PM
hi keith,

i don't know how to get a photo onto this thread without photoshop and i don't have it anymore. i've got 2 pictures to show you. they're both 22" X30". if you can help me get them here, i'd really appreciate it.

thanks! pati

Keith2
01-25-2007, 03:45 AM
I'm no expert, this is how it's done.

Set your digital camera to the coarsest picture quality (the one which will store the greatest number of pictures in the memory). I normally use a setting of about 600 by 400 pixels which gives a picture size of 180 Kbs.



Prop the picture against a wall and take photos. Get close up and then you won't have to edit out the wall aroung the picture.


Transfer the photos to your pc. Chose the best one and remember its file name.


Make a posting on this thread and press the icon that allows you to add a photo. You will be shown a list of all your photo files and will be asked to click on the one you want. If your photo file is too big the pc will reject it.


Perhaps other forum members could add to these instructions if they aren't clear enough.

pati123
01-25-2007, 08:28 AM
thanks keith,

i've already taken photos of the paintings. i went to the page that allows you to upload; it's the one that lets you add about 10 pictures and says "browse". the icons on this thread confuse me. the one that says "attachments" says to put your url in and i don't have one. i feel like a moron and despise computer acrobatics. i'll try again.

pati

pati123
01-25-2007, 09:04 AM
hi keith,

i'm mentally challenged, apparently. can i email it to you? if you want to publish it you can.

pati

dbclemons
01-25-2007, 09:23 AM
Pati,

If your file was saved at or under the Max file limits, it will upload fine, otherwise there will be an error if the file is too large, and it'll have to be made smaller (500x600x1MB or less.) With the Manage Attachments screen open, click the Browse button. Choose the file you want to upload on your computer, and then click Upload. It will take a few seconds for the file to process, the screen will refresh, and if the file meets the size requirements you'll see it listed as a current attachment.

pati123
01-25-2007, 09:26 AM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/25-Jan-2007/99281-limbo_express.jpg


hah! i did it!!!!!!

hi keith,

this really taxed my brain. now i can't get rid of this bold font.

pati

pati123
01-25-2007, 09:45 AM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/25-Jan-2007/99281-shoe.jpeg

hi keith,

here's another one. they both don't look too good when they're reduced in size. no detail is shown and that's what the paintings are strongest in.

thanks for all the tips, y'all. i still had to figure it out for myself and will forget how i did it next time.

pati


pati

pati123
01-25-2007, 10:07 AM
david,

thanks for the instruction on posting a picture. i've got a professional question for you. i live in the south, but in a very small oasis of progressive minded people. if you step one foot out of chapel hill, you'll be surrounded by rednecks.

we have a lot of well-known novelists, musicians and artists. but there's really no publishers looking for illustrators. my question is: what can i do to find a publisher that could use my work? my pictures are purposely ambiguous. on first glance they're child-like, using primary colors. on the other hand, the themes are very dark emotionally. most of the people that've bought them only see the playfulness of color and composition. i think they're shallow, but they buy 'em so what the hell? A few others see past the image into another world. it's funny but i've sold several to psychiatrists. they haven't invited me to be a patient. maybe they think i'm too far gone. or maybe, they appreciate the link between mental chaos and creativity. if gallery managers could really understand the content of the picture, they'd toss me out the door. they think they're so "with it" but seem to be pretty shallow too. i try not to care, but do anyway. galleries embarrass me with their elitism and phoniness. my friends all aspire to get into the most exclusive galleries and to be famous. i just want to be an illustrator because i love telling stories visually. since i can't get work as one, i have to sell the pictures as "fine art," which they can pass as. it makes me feel like i sold out.
oh well.

pati

dbclemons
01-25-2007, 01:49 PM
Pati, I'll PM you with some info.

pati123
01-25-2007, 06:46 PM
thanks david,

i am just starting out after many years of making $ in another field. it feels like i'v been asleep and woke up to a nightmare of electronic illustration. i tried taking photoshop and illustration at parson's in nyc but got frustrated and dropped out. its as alien to me as quantum physics. if no one wants hand rendered art, there's no sense busting my butt to get work. i probably make as much $ selling by word of mouth and private viewings in my studio than i'd make working as an illustrator. by the way, my painting of the train was a finalist in the international illustrator's competition. i'm so lazy and unambitious; they asked me to send the painting, framed, to the exhibition in ny by the society of illustrators and i threw the letter away.
is that bragging? i guess i'm insecure these days. i tried to send this by pm but couldn't figure that out either. i do feel like a bonehead. how do you do a pm?

bye

pati

dbclemons
01-25-2007, 07:34 PM
Private Messages are accessable at the top right corner of the screen, if you have any available the number will be displayed as Unread. You can send a person a PM by clicking on the person's name as it's displayed here: where it says "dbclemons" next to my avatar, for instance. Then a scroll-down option asks if you want to send this person a private message.

There should be an introductory section on the main page that explains all the ins-and-outs of the features here.

pati123
01-26-2007, 10:06 AM
thanks david,

back to why gouache is an outstanding medium for fine art. i spoke to robert doark, a paint maker in ny. he spent a lot of time talking about his paints and various mediums, a lot of which i never heard of. he sells a liquid pigment blend used for watercolor and a white medium to turn them into gouache. he also told me that he had another substance that is wax-like that if added to the gouache will render them into an acrylic like paint; they become waterproof and can be used like oils. i told him that glass was too expensive for the size of my work and he said he has another substance that when applied heavily becomes glass-like, excluding the need for glass. i think it's called b67, but i'm not sure.

i ordered 3 liquid colors, approximating primaries, and the waxy stuff that makes them waterproof and a white. i'll let you know what they're like when they get here. it would be worth your time to call him. he's a bit brusque but very generous with his time. he'll tell you that whatever you're using is garbage and that his stuff (he has his own watercolor paper at $40.00 a sheet) is the only stuff worth buying. but he'll explain why and is pretty convincing. his number is 718-237-1210 or 718-237-0146. he also has his own brushes, i think they're large fresco brushes that he used for gigantic w/c paintings. actually, it seems like whatever you need, he has it and it is the best on the planet. he's not exactly humble, but he knows chemistry, color theory and just about everything. i read a review by him of graham oils and he said they were great, so he may be overstating his abilities. on the phone he said they were pretty bad.

i apologize for putting so much personal stuff on this thread, but know about pms now. thanks for your patience and generosity of spirit.

pati

Keith2
01-26-2007, 02:08 PM
The pictures posted on the thread are superb - I didn't know gouache could have such rich colours.

andymathis
01-26-2007, 02:29 PM
here's a link to handprint about the doak watercolors
http://www.handprint.com/HP/WCL/pigmt2.html#doak

Lumpafur
07-26-2007, 09:36 AM
What if I just want to try using Gouache and don't want to shell out all the money that I have already on oils? I hate oils! The smell of turps urps me. Can't handle them.

One at Dick Blick's is Savoir Faire French School Opaque Watercolor Gouach. Is it readlly such a bad example of gouache?

I would trade someone all my oil painting tubes and solvernts for some good gouache, it that works out.

monkhaus
12-16-2007, 03:26 PM
Well, I'm coming late to this thread, sorry, but I've been playing with a number of different mediums to see where my interests lie... anyway Graham's stuff is easy for me to get so I've purchased a fair amount of their gouache over the past couple of years and have been thrilled with it. I've not tried Schminke but have heard good things about it. And their oils are supposed to be top notch too.
Anyway, the Graham has great covering power, strong color, blends wonderfully etc etc. And frankly you're not paying for a name (W&N) but instead are paying for the quality of the product.

betart
04-26-2008, 09:50 PM
I like to use Strathmore Illustration Board when painting with gouache or watercolor. You can paint on either side, it is acid free and it has the Strathmore embossed stamp in the corner.

Jesterjangles
01-15-2009, 09:18 PM
Hi. I can see from the conversation that this is a medium that is very versatile and hesitate to ask, however to lay down a coating on watercolor paper or other heavy paper, in a pinch what can I sub for gouache? I don't have a tube and a project calls for a base of white gouache to work with resists. Thanks for any ideas. Kristin

Richard Saylor
01-16-2009, 08:09 PM
Before watercolor became a medium for elite purists, a common technique was to apply colors on top of a base coat of Chinese white watercolor. White gouache is similar to Chinese white but generally would have more covering power (opacity). You can use watercolors with white gouache. In fact, watercolor and gouache are perfectly compatible. I mix watercolor and gouache all the time. (Gouache purists don't like this, but it is perfectly okay.) For playing with resists, you can certainly use watercolor instead of gouache. If you don't have Chinese white, try a base of yellow watercolor. Just apply it a bit thicker than normal watercolor. Of course, a yellow base will radically change the hue of colors painted over it, but it will work for learning resist techniques. Resist techniques which I know about will also work on plain watercolor paper.

Richard in NC

Jesterjangles
01-17-2009, 08:55 AM
Richard in NC,
Thanks much for the tip. :cat: I have a tube of opaque white (water color) so I will give the project a try with that. The whole resist technique that is up for Challenge this month is very new to me so I was at a loss when it called for Gouache. Now, even though I paint mostly decoratively in acrylics, I just may want to give Gouache a try, too! Sounds like an incredible medium with a bad rap. Would like to determine for myself, in the meantime I'll try the opaque watercolor for my project. Kristin

Monkeybiz
01-20-2009, 07:52 PM
If painted thickly on paper, it can crack easily if the paper is bent. However, with thin application, it's fine, especially when matted with a backboard for protection. Illustration board is a great surface for gouache, but is not archival. Rag matboard is great. All supports can be acrylic primed if you prefer not to work with such an absorbant surface. I haven't used it on panel, but I can't imagine any problem with a hardboard support with acrylic primer. You'd have to use a spacer when framing though, to keep the paint off the glass.

Jamie[/quote]

I've used goauche on acrylic gesso primed hardboard and then varnished it lightly a matt spray varnish. I've lightly sprayed and let it dry then lightly sprayed again (keeping a good two feet between the hardboard and srpay stream I let the varnish fall vertically downward on the hardboard). The varnish falls lightly enough not to change the color drastically. I've painted on 140lb and 185 lb watercolor paper and framed behind uv protected non-glare glass and that has worked well too. I prefer the hardboard and varnish though because the goauche has such a gorgeous matte finish that seems so far away under glass (even when using only a 1/8 inch separation between the glass and the painting. :thumbsup:

dbclemons
01-20-2009, 08:41 PM
...Illustration board is a great surface for gouache, but is not archival...

The are some illo boards that are 100% rag or others with wood pulp backing that is acid-free. That would be considered archival.

...I haven't used it on panel, but I can't imagine any problem with a hardboard support with acrylic primer...

There are some special types of acylic primers that are made to be more porous than others, like Golden's sandable gesso or Art Spectrum's Colourfix, and these work fine with gouache. There are also papers and boards you can buy that have this sort of primed surface already on them, like Ampersand's Aquabord. Gouache really needs an absorbant surface to work well, since it's basically watercolor paint.

maggie latham
01-20-2009, 11:42 PM
Hello everyone,

Jumping into this thread a little late, but have been following with interest, so thought I would share my own thoughts:

I use W&N all the time …both watercolour and gouache and they are good quality. They are not especially ‘cheap’ or produce ‘cheap wimpy looking paintings’……producing rich colourful paintings is more about knowing how to handle the medium and how much pigment you use.

Gouache has been traditionally used by illustrators because of its matte opaque finish that reproduce well.

Gouache can be used with many different techniques, used thinly or thickly, on paper or panel. It can be used on gessoed panels and then varnished with a spray varnish, however this is not favoured by everyone. Ralph Parker (Old Tex) is an artist here on WC who uses this method almost exclusively.

As I use watercolour paper, I prefer to frame my paintings under glass, traditionally with a mat.

The type of brushes you use, the amount of pigment to water and type of support will determine the finished outcome and 'look' of your panting.

There are as many different techniques in using gouache as there are in watercolour, so it is important to experiment and find out which techniques work for you and your style of paintings. Gouache is very effective used on coloured printmaking papers such as black Somerset velvet paper (see Deborah Secor’s recent gouache paintings).

I have recently started a new art blog about my own experiences in painting with gouache…….there is a link to my gouache blog in my signature line below.

Gouache is a wonderful versatile medium and the more educated people (and artists) are about it ……the more it will be taken as the serious fine art medium it is.:)

Maggie

Richard Saylor
01-21-2009, 12:34 AM
I think most paintings and photographs look better under conventional glass than non-glare glass.

Studio-1-F
01-22-2009, 04:42 PM
Here is more info (http://www.schmincke.de/produkte/gouache-vielfalt.html?L=1) on the three different kinds of Schmincke gouache.

And here (http://www.handprint.com/HP/WCL/pigmt7.html) is MacEvoy (handprint) on gouache.

Keith2, you said that you read "a comparison of half a dozen Gouache makes in a magazine a couple of years ago and W and N came out well". Can you remember exactly where that article was? I'd like to try to find it.

Jan

Salamander
01-22-2009, 11:30 PM
Gouache is Great! Experiment and see for your self.
-e-in-o'side-

maggie latham
01-23-2009, 03:16 AM
Hello everyone,

I’ve just re-read this entire thread….and have to say I don’t know what all the fuss about W&N paints is all about:lol:

I have been using them for years (have tried other brands but always go back to W&N)…..and have no problem with either the richness of colour, application of paint or paint consistency.

…….So, as W&N have been getting a bad wrap in this post I will reiterate: For me, both W&N gouache and watercolour paints (tube variety) produce rich and consistent paintings.

Even though out of print, Rob Howard’s book ‘Gouache for illustration’ compares several different brands of gouache on the market

Maggie

Richard Saylor
01-23-2009, 06:27 AM
W/N makes excellent gouache, but they didn't always put lightfastness ratings on their tubes, so I stopped buying from them. If gouache is going to be used for fine arts as well as designer colors, then I think it needs to have a permanence rating on the paint tubes.

Richard Saylor
01-23-2009, 07:07 AM
Other painting media have certain specific advantages, but gouache has a surface texture and appearance which ventures into the mystical and cannot be duplicated by anything else. I love the handling properties of acrylic and its endless possibilities for glazing effects, but it is impossible to approach the freshness and immediacy of gouache with acrylic.

dbclemons
01-23-2009, 09:15 AM
They have the permanence and ASTM lightfst ratings listed on their website (http://www.winsornewton.com/products/gouache/designers-gouache/colour-chart/) Thankfully, they now list the pigment info too, which for the longest time was not offered.

I have to admit that I haven't bought their brand of gouache in years, so maybe it's been improved. The handling of the paint always struck me as a bit poor, rather stiff or short. Thery also have a strange latex-like odor that other gouache doesn't have. All that plus their tiny size tubes makes me avoid them, but if you like it then by all means enjoy them.

Use Her Name
01-23-2009, 03:41 PM
I usually use Oils and am learning Acrylics. I have always relied on gouache and watercolor for "studies", but have never really thought of them as anything more than a practice tool. Recently, though, I have been giving them full credit as a great medium to use for permanent art works.

Richard Saylor
01-23-2009, 10:39 PM
They have the permanence and ASTM lightfst ratings listed on their website (http://www.winsornewton.com/products/gouache/designers-gouache/colour-chart/) Thankfully, they now list the pigment info too, which for the longest time was not offered......Yes, but if you just happen to be in an arts and crafts store, gravitate over to the painting supplies (which I always do), browse the (overpriced) gouache (which is always W/N), and see a color you want to try, you can't really expect a store employee to supply you with any technical information. Of course, it's not hard to guess that Burnt Sienna (or such like) would probably be the usual bombproof pigment, but how about Chainsaw Crimson Splatter or Quinacridone Putrefaction? Since W/N has adequate pigment information even on tiny tubes of watercolor, the lack thereof on gouache suggests that perhaps they do not think of that product as a fine arts medium.

Once I impulse-bought tubes of W/N Primary Red, Yellow, and Blue. When I got home, the first thing I did was look 'em up on the W/N site. The yellow and blue were tame enough, but the red was really weird, and the permanence rating was B. (In W/N's rating system, AA is best, A is next, so B is pretty poor, rather allergic to direct sunlight.) That red will surely knock your eyes out, though! It's almost as pretty as Opera (another unfortunate fugitive).

Richard in NC

Ogbu-opi
01-24-2009, 02:47 AM
I just discovered this thread and have followed it with keen interest. I work mainly with oils and acrylic (more with acrylic recently) but I have heard a lot about gouache and most of what I've heard are all good things. I once tried them out and wasn't so impressed with them. But I guess I have to keep at it to get the best out of them.

One question has been cropping up in my head though and it is "Must gouache paintings be preserved behind a glass frame?". In order words is there anyway of making them waterproof? :confused::confused:

maggie latham
01-24-2009, 05:40 AM
Hello everyone,

http://www.winsornewton.com/....link to W&N website

Just been checking out the W&N website....so here goes as written on their site........... (maybe more information than anyone really wants to read (lol):)

7. How permanent or fugitive are Designers Gouache colours?
Permanence in the main refers to lightfastness. Some of the most vivid pinks and violets are only moderately durable, more suitable for designers artwork than fine artists who want greater permanence. The latter should choose only the colours rated as permanent. Do not mistake any references to permanence on lower quality products if the meaning is waterproof. The fading of a colour is due to the pigment and the methods which are used in painting. The permanence of a colour is described by Winsor & Newton using the system of AA, A, B and C. AA being Extremely Permanent and C being Fugitive. Fugitive means ‘transient’, some fugitive colours may fade within months.
For permanent paintings it is recommended that only AA and A colours are used as these are not expected to fade. Light Purple has a B rating and Parma Violet a C rating, fading over a 10 year period would not be unexpected with these colours.

6. Should a Designers Gouache painting be varnished or framed?
Gouache paintings are best left unvarnished because the varnish drastically affects the depth, darkness and finish of the work. It would not be removable in the future either. If you want to varnish because of dusting off, use gum arabic in the future instead. For protection, frame the work behind glass. Gouache and all works on paper should not be placed in a frame directly onto the glass, as this does not allow for any circulation within the frame and condensation can build up, resulting in mold growth. A mount between the paper and glass allows just enough circulation to prevent this. Provided your linen inset is between the paper and the glass, it will perform exactly the same job as a card mount. The frame will not have any effect on the fading of the painting you describe.

The fading of a colour is due to the pigment and the methods which are used in painting. The permanence of a colour is described by Winsor & Newton using the system of AA, A, B and C. AA being Extremely Permanent and C being Fugitive. Fugitive means ‘transient’, some fugitive colours may fade within months.

For permanent paintings it is recommended that only AA and A colours are used as these are not expected to fade. Light Purple has a B rating and Parma Violet a C rating, fading over a 10 year period would not be unexpected with these colours.


This is also useful information from the same site:

Who uses Gouache and why?
Designers – its ease of use and brilliance make it the most popular designers colour, hence the name, Designers’ Gouache. The matt finish makes for more accurate reproduction at artwork stage.
Fine artists – use it in conjunction with water colour or on its own. Its brilliance and opacity give it solidity, excellent for abstract work. Strong effects also result from the contrast of working on coloured backgrounds which are left partly exposed.
Airbrushing – water based and great covering power make gouache popular with airbrush artists. It’s the high pigmentation which makes the gouache opaque and matt.
Calligraphy – gouache is used by calligraphers because of its excellent flow, opacity and permanence.
Marbling – the high pigmentation and gum arabic base make it a common choice with professional marblers.

What to use it on
Best results are achieved on paper. For flat artwork, use HP water colour paper or smooth cartridge paper. Use 140lb or 220g to reduce cockling, or better still stretch the paper first. Cockling is likely to be worse if you leave some of the paper unpainted. Pastel paper will give you the strongest coloured background but these papers are not generally as lightfast as artists’ colours. Try tinted water colour paper instead or colouring stretched paper yourself with gouache first.

Permanence
Permanence in the main refers to lightfastness. Some of the most vivid pinks and violets are only moderately durable, more suitable for designers’ artwork than fine artists who want greater permanence. The latter should choose only the colours rated as permanent. Don’t mistake any references to permanence on lower quality products if the meaning is waterproof.

Making gouache waterproof
Gouache can be made water resistant by mixing with acrylic medium. If you want to do this because colour is dusting off, see below. The more medium you add, the deeper the tone will become and you will reduce the characteristic matt gouache finish. Some gouache colours can react, the pinks and violets may change colour on mixing with the medium whist other colours may produce lumpy or gelatinous mixtures. Both these effects occur at the point of mixing on the palette.

Preventing gouache from cracking or dusting off
The high pigmentation of gouache leaves the minimum room for binder. If painting in multiple layers the binder may be absorbed by underlayers, resulting in cracking. Dusting off can occur if the colour is diluted with too much water, leaving only pigment on the paper. This is common when airbrushing. In both cases you need gum arabic. With multiple layers, add gum arabic to the colour, keep it to a minimum or you’ll get transparency and gloss, but the amount needed will vary from colour to colour. For airbrushing, dilute all the colours with a mixture of gum arabic and water.

Adding texture
Gouache is likely to crack if used in thick films straight from the tube. Textured brushwork can be achieved with gouache by using Aquapasto medium. Don’t use too much or you’ll loose mattness and opacity. Added texture is possible by using acrylic texture gels, but read the section above on waterproofing as that information applies here too.

Varnishing
Gouache paintings are best left unvarnished because the varnish drastically affects the depth, darkness and finish of the work. It would not be removable in the future either. If you want to varnish because of dusting off, use gum arabic in the future instead. For protection, frame the work behind glass.


Hope this clears up issues and questions......:)
Maggie

maggie latham
01-24-2009, 06:05 AM
David,

OOOOps! Sorry I didn’t see that you had already posted the W&N website earlier.

Maggie

Ogbu-opi
01-24-2009, 06:24 AM
Interesting read!!! It pretty much answers my question :clap:.

Thanks :thumbsup:

Richard Saylor
01-25-2009, 11:16 PM
Around fifteen years ago someone gave me a beautiful signed, numbered print of an Arctic Wolf (my favorite wild animal). It was unframed, but it had a mat and was sealed in shrink-wrap. I made a frame for it, and put it into the frame with the shrink-wrap intact but without glass. There has been no deterioration over the years. Maybe some kind of plastic food wrap would adequately protect a gouache painting, or maybe cellulose acetate, like the sheets used for transparencies for overhead projecters. The painting would need a mat to keep it from touching the protective material, but otherwise it seems like this should work, at least for small paintings, up to, say 8x10 in.

Richard in NC

Salamander
01-27-2009, 09:43 PM
Even though out of print, Rob Howard’s book ‘Gouache for illustration’ compares several different brands of gouache on the market
Maggie

If you can find this book affordably by all means get it! I is well worth a few extra bucks, (not the huge amounts often requested). I bought mine off eBay for about 20 US dollars. Shop around for sure, but get it!!.
2cents from -e-in-o'side-

Bearlette
04-28-2009, 04:15 PM
Are the colors Lightfast? Bearlette

Bearlette
04-28-2009, 04:16 PM
Are the colors Lightfast? Bearlette:confused:

Lisa Toth
10-07-2009, 01:26 PM
Has anyone tried Turner's Acryl Gouache? I watched a DVD by Micah Mullen recently in which he used these along with acrylics. I liked the effects very much.

They seem to be more expensive than good acrylics so I am a little timid about jumping in.

Also can gouche be varnished if a gloss finish is desired?

Lisa Toth

dbclemons
10-07-2009, 03:11 PM
I have a few of the Turner Acryl. Not quite the same as genuine gouache in terms of handling but okay. Also, some of the paints are curious mixed pigments instead of single pigments. There are several other brands of these type of paints too. Since they are acrylic paint, there's no problem varnishing them. Genuine gouache would be better unvarnished, in my opinion.

http://www.turner.co.jp/english/index.html

shannonryanart
10-08-2009, 12:40 PM
I've been using gouache, often combined with watercolor, for the best of both worlds. I would prefer to use oils, but even water soluble oils are too smelly for me, giving me headaches. I missed the greater possibilities in using oils, since watercolor does not allow painting from dark to light (and I'm lazy enough not to want to spend ages painting a watercolor in a certain way to accomplish a certain look that could be done in minutes with gouache). So I began using gouache for some of my paintings in the past year and do love it.

The only thing watercolor and gouache don't give is the lovely sheen and warm glow that oils give. But that aside, it's so easy to use gouache. If you've only used watercolor, it takes some getting used to the way it handles, but after a couple of paintings, I got the idea fast.

LarrySeiler
10-10-2009, 10:38 AM
Painted with acrylics for over 30 years...oils the past 15 years. I'm pretty much sold on oils as my main medium, the color...the opportunity painting outdoors to use oils in all weather, cold...etc.,

but...what I have enjoyed with the gouache pieces I've done thus far, is I seem to easily enough use them in an oil mode of thinking, alla prima...directly, and heck...standing at a counter in the kitchen with no mess or smells if I want. Feels a bit like an extension of oil painting...like practicing oils without using oils.

I've been trying to push myself toward greater essential simplicity in my oils...a painterliness that is yet realistic, nailing the moment without overworking and the irony is it seems to happen by the nature of the pigment or more naturally for me with the gouache, if that makes sense.

I hope playing with the gouache will lead to more of that then happening in my oils...

dbclemons
10-10-2009, 02:11 PM
I work in a variety of media, and I find there's a certain cross-pollination that happens with the way I've learned to handle each one. The manner in which I apply gouache or casein can be used with oils or acrylics. It's essentially focusing on mixing the right color ahead of time. It's more of a general painting skill and not specific to the medium used; although, each medium has certain advantages or disadvantages by comparison.

I don't bother trying to make my acrylics look like an oil painting - why should I? Working in multiple mediums also keeps me on my toes and my skills sharp.

sugarlift
12-13-2009, 04:18 PM
I'd been using acrylics for about 10 years but I've grown increasingly frustrated with the medium - having to paint and repaint (and often re-repaint) areas to get an even colour, having to struggle with humidity conditions, too hot and your paint dries too quick, too damp and your paint doesn't dry at all, and worst of all those horrible, artificial colours.

Recently I tried using gouache again. The last time I tried gouache was during my first week in art school, when they taught us how to do a colour wheel. That tedious little exercise put me off gouache for a long time and it's a shame that UK art schools give you this lame introduction to what is a very versatile medium.

I guess because my work is rooted in drawing (and because I'm terribly impatient), gouache is the best paint for me. True, opaque colours, no faffing around with drying times, no hassle with room temperatures, no stressing from the paint drying up on the pallet and then desperately trying to rematch the colour.

Anyhow, I love gouache. A very underrated medium IMO.

siberart
12-23-2009, 10:37 AM
I have just discovered gouache after many years of working with transparent watercolor. How wonderful to be able to combine the 2 of them. I just finished 2 very quick commissions and could not have accomplished what I did in the short time I had without the gouache. Leave white??? Now I don't have to in every instance. This is a fantastic forum. I will be back!!

Chesterfield9874
06-21-2010, 11:32 AM
Gouache--at least if you buy a decent brand--is incredibly vibrant, since it doesn't include white, and, from any reputable manufacturer, has a much higher pigment load than watercolor. That's one of the ways a good manufacturer, like *Schmincke Horadam* or *Artists Gouache* (the latter of which doesn't have any fugitive colors in its line) achieves opacity, by increasing the pigment load.

scott hill
07-26-2010, 06:58 PM
What is meant by fugitive colors and pigment load ?

scott hill
07-26-2010, 07:08 PM
Gouache--at least if you buy a decent brand--is incredibly vibrant, since it doesn't include white, and, from any reputable manufacturer, has a much higher pigment load than watercolor. That's one of the ways a good manufacturer, like *Schmincke Horadam* or *Artists Gouache* (the latter of which doesn't have any fugitive colors in its line) achieves opacity, by increasing the pigment load.

Is Artists gouache a company like Winsor Newton or did you just mean artist quality paints of any company .

scott hill
07-26-2010, 07:08 PM
Gouache--at least if you buy a decent brand--is incredibly vibrant, since it doesn't include white, and, from any reputable manufacturer, has a much higher pigment load than watercolor. That's one of the ways a good manufacturer, like *Schmincke Horadam* or *Artists Gouache* (the latter of which doesn't have any fugitive colors in its line) achieves opacity, by increasing the pigment load.

Is Artists gouache a company like Winsor Newton or did you just mean artist quality paints of any company .

dbclemons
07-26-2010, 10:35 PM
What is meant by fugitive colors and pigment load ?

Fugitive would be pigment colors that will fade in a relatively short period of time, i.e. have poor lightfast quality. Madder lake is the most notorious of these. Most dyes also have this trait, but there are fast dyes too.

Pigment load is the ratio of pigment to binder. Watercolors can have a high pigment load also, and can in fact be quite opaque. Watercolor pigment tends to be mulled to a smaller size than gouache so that it will flow in water better. A larger particle size of pigment helps gouache achieve opacity and be applied more thickly.

There's no particular rule book that manufacturers follow that differentiates the two mediums. The binder might not even be gum arabic, but glycol. Dextrin is also used in gouache to help make the paint more creamy.

Phil Coleman
11-09-2010, 02:50 PM
Has anyone used the Caran d'ache gouache pans? and how do you find them compared to other makes?

Trond
11-09-2010, 04:29 PM
I work in a variety of media, and I find there's a certain cross-pollination that happens with the way I've learned to handle each one. The manner in which I apply gouache or casein can be used with oils or acrylics. It's essentially focusing on mixing the right color ahead of time. It's more of a general painting skill and not specific to the medium used; although, each medium has certain advantages or disadvantages by comparison.

I don't bother trying to make my acrylics look like an oil painting - why should I? Working in multiple mediums also keeps me on my toes and my skills sharp.

So which brand of gouache do you recommend? I noticed that you have used several. I think Holbein is pretty good, but W&N is also very nice (smells different though, as you noted. Could this be ox gall?) Anyway, I like the fact that M Graham seems to take this medium more seriously than most (offering many true earth colors as opposed to pigment blends etc), so I will probably try that brand soon. Apart from oil, gouache is rapidly becoming my favorite medium.

dbclemons
11-10-2010, 09:02 AM
So which brand of gouache do you recommend? ...

The main factor for me is to buy at least a decent brand that comes in a good size tube. The one I use most often is DaVinci - good paint and the tubes are 37ml. There are other good brands like Schmincke or Graham but the tubes are too small for me. It's like trying to paint your house with a spray can. If you paint small works all the time and thin it like watercolor that may not be so important.

The other issue, as you mentioned, is to get the right pigment. Many of the major brands make decent paint but the color selection isn't that great. You can extend your choices by using a good quality watercolor as long as you don't paint thickly with it.

Trond
11-10-2010, 03:06 PM
The main factor for me is to buy at least a decent brand that comes in a good size tube. The one I use most often is DaVinci - good paint and the tubes are 37ml. There are other good brands like Schmincke or Graham but the tubes are too small for me. It's like trying to paint your house with a spray can. If you paint small works all the time and thin it like watercolor that may not be so important.

The other issue, as you mentioned, is to get the right pigment. Many of the major brands make decent paint but the color selection isn't that great. You can extend your choices by using a good quality watercolor as long as you don't paint thickly with it.

Thanks! I don't think small tubes will be a big problem for me, but perhaps I will check out DaVinci later.

The only thing that annoys me with gouache in general is their tendency to dry out in the tubes. Luckily, I am not opposed to rewetting dried paint, so I have cut open a couple of dried-out tubes and put the contents in large empty watercolor pans. After adding a little water, the paint can be used again.

rogerw
02-09-2012, 12:44 AM
i know this off topic but ill get back quiclyHi im new. My name is roger. Ive been painting with water colors for 12yrs. My artwork i use s laking compisition. I make up for my faults with images that inspire me there the things id like to see. At my start of water colors i cumpolsively bought an 18 pk of Reeves Gouache (didnt know what it
really meant) i do mix my water colors one the brush and it lays rater thick. So with the way i use watercolour i figured gouache was a great step
nine years later. Ive been using holbien and mix my paints once theyve dried like my waterclor style. Its reealy fun working the layers up to that thick matte finish ive been looking for.

As far as the benefits go they make my painting pop with an intising matte andvwith my style i find the paint blends much nicer.

rogerw
02-09-2012, 12:48 AM
Anyone here have tips on making or using neutral grey to mix the colors like peuple do with oils? If not is there a better way to do it then just adding white.

blissofsilver
02-20-2012, 10:10 AM
Very cool Jamie!! I had NO IDEA!! It's an all purpose medium! I like the idea of not reserving whites. I have a hard time with that in w/c.

Thanks for your input!

Nancy You can use masking or carefully paint around the white areas. :)

ksgoeben
10-01-2012, 09:01 PM
Hi everyone,

I just finished reading this entire thread. I impulsively purchased an inexpensive set of Gouache at WalMart one day (the line is Simply by Daler & Rowney). I used to paint with oils but grew tired of the enormous set up/clean up time and expense. I switched over to watercolors but never really enjoyed the light to dark painting progression. I played around with the gouache for a few weeks and voila! There is no going back. Gouache is the best of both worlds. I paint with them like I used to do with the oils and absolutely love them. I never have to worry if the paint dries on the palette -- a couple squirts of water with the spray bottle and we are back in business once again. Love it!!!! I am going to try some of the better brands. I also purchased a set of the Reeves brand. Daler & Rowney seems to be better than the Reeves. Neither set has a permanence rating so maybe I'll google their websites and see if I can find any info on it. Thanks, everyone for all the great input on this thread.

Sherry

OddballAnn
10-02-2012, 12:47 AM
I just learned about Gouache paints not too long ago, and wondered if they just came out like watercolors. They seem very affordable compared to oils and even acrylics, but what makes them different than regular watercolor paints?

Deborah Secor
10-07-2012, 08:46 PM
Sherry, so glad you've discovered the joys of gouache... I couldn't agree with you more--this is a really unique and versatile medium.

Ann, the main difference is gouache is opaque, while watercolor is transparent. Gouache isn't exactly like watercolor but you can use it very thin and watery so it resembles transparent watercolor, if you choose (although it looks more grainy when really thin sometimes.) It can also look more like oil paints, or like acrylics, in some respects, depending on how you use it.

Just aj
10-31-2012, 02:49 AM
Glad to find this thread, just posted on an older thread in the WC forum. I have always painted with watercolors. My first set was the 8 pan set of Prang you got in first grade. I've always been able to create my own colors, so it seemed easy, but I wanted to try oils, and I was in Love. However over time, it seems like it's a big production to set up to paint. So I got a box of 1/2 pans watercolors by Windsor Newton. I like them because they're fast, clean up is easy. However I was asked once if one of my paintings was gouache, and of course I said no, it's watercolor. But this guy kept calling it gouache. I wasn't sure what he meant, so this thread has really helped me to understand. I guess it was because my painting seemed more opaque than a traditional watercolor. I do want to try them though. Sounds wonderful. Thanks everyone for the info.

craftyandy
11-27-2012, 05:57 PM
One thing that springs to mind that hasn't been mentioned yet. I use gouache almost exclusively for painting decorated manuscripts. I use heavy watercolour paper (450 gsm) as my surface, and the gouache is used thinned to about the consistency of cream. At this consistency, you can put it on with a brush, or load it into a dip pen and use it like ink. Gouche can in some cases be a little streaky, and the best way to combat this is to add a little Ox Gall liquid to your water. works a treat, and the paint has never cracked on my work. It needs to be framed behind glass using a mount to prevent condensation and fungal growth, and you need to be incredibly careful not to touch the paint surface with anything hard, or you will 'burnish' a shiny mark on it.

artdragon86
12-01-2012, 10:52 PM
The only thing that annoys me with gouache in general is their tendency to dry out in the tubes. Luckily, I am not opposed to rewetting dried paint, so I have cut open a couple of dried-out tubes and put the contents in large empty watercolor pans. After adding a little water, the paint can be used again.
I just found several tubes of Winsor and Newton Designers Gouache which I don't even remember having but seem to be about a year old (may have been a gift from my Nan, I don't know). I opened them up and some of them seem to have separated slightly. I unfurled a paperclip and stuck it into the tubes and swished it around a bit and it seems to have done a decent job of mixing the vehicle and the pigment back together. I don't know if this would work as well (or even at all) for paints that had gone through significant separation/drying.

I've seen a few people talking about their home made sketching kits (in the watercolour forums) and some of them have made their own pans of gouache. I had always thought that gouache couldn't really be rewet like watercolour, and that if it were poured into a pan it would set into a hard and unusable cake. Are some brands just better for this than others, or are they doing something to it to make it stay juicy and rewettable? Having found the paints, I'm looking forward to playing with them.

Deborah Secor
12-02-2012, 12:08 PM
Rebecca, gouache is always re-wettable, in the palette or on the painting! It's one of the habits that's a blessing and a curse about this medium.

I have a butcher's tray palette and reuse dried gouache all the time. I live in a dry climate and I work small, so I only put out a pea-sized dab of each color, which means that it's completely dried out between uses. When I'm prepared to paint again I spray the tray with a generous spritz of water and give it a couple of minutes before beginning to paint. Some of the pigments are more readily made into a useful creamy mixture and others are a little more resistant to remixing, but are still quite useful as thinner washes. I haven't identified brands that are more amenable to remixing, but on my palette I know which colors I'll need to add if I want a creamy mixture for a a painting. Those will get a fresh dab on the palette when I'm in need of them.

I have some tubes of many-years-old gouache that have become like little bricks of dried paint, where no mixing in the tube is practical. In those cases I have cut open the tube and placed the dried paint glob in a container and added a bit of water. Although it by no means makes "fresh" gouache, it will in most cases make a very useful mixture.

I hope you enjoy using the gouache you have. :)

DeGrinch
12-27-2012, 05:27 AM
I am working on a painting right now that is a mixture of acrylic and "gwash" lol.

Been doing a bit of reading myself with regards to this product, I'm not sure whats to come of my art once I complete it and time takes hold along with the rest of the mediums I am using. The beauty of Art hey folks :)

If none of that makes sense then I guess what I am sayin is try the Gouache and only time will tell how it works for you, and how you will want to work with it.

:)

artdragon86
12-30-2012, 04:10 AM
I have a few of the Turner Acryl. Not quite the same as genuine gouache in terms of handling but okay. Also, some of the paints are curious mixed pigments instead of single pigments. There are several other brands of these type of paints too. Since they are acrylic paint, there's no problem varnishing them. Genuine gouache would be better unvarnished, in my opinion.
http://www.turner.co.jp/english/index.html
So is this Turner Acryl Gouache stuff acrylic or gouache, or some sort of hybrid? I've seen it mentioned in both the acrylic and gouache forums. I'm just wondering because my invoice from Jerry's last night says they're including a sample set of them with my order. Probably because I ordered some of that SoHo Urban Artist Gouache (not expecting it to be in the region of artist grade quality, I just wanted something cheap to play around and learn with before I use up too much of my WN gouache).

Rebecca, gouache is always re-wettable, in the palette or on the painting! It's one of the habits that's a blessing and a curse about this medium.

Thanks for your response :wave: I think I had seen somewhere that rewetted gouache tended to form 'flakes' that would contaminate the paint and show up especially in thin washes. Though maybe that is just for the lower quality student brands. I might try making a small portable gouache set and see how it goes :) As far as paint drying in the tubes (or jars, if you use one that comes in jars), I think if you catch it early enough, it seems like it would be possible to rehydrate it by just adding some water gradually and then stirring with a toothpick or something, but I guess if it's at that point where it's just a solid crumbly block of pigment, it's a lot harder to save.

I have been playing with my WNs a bit though. Still having a bit of trouble getting used to them... Up til now I've used watercolour and acrylic, so gouache seems kind of like a step between the two. I know this probably makes me weird, but I like the smell of both the gouache and the acrylic (I use the Atelier Interactives by Chroma) :lol:

dbclemons
01-06-2013, 10:28 AM
So is this Turner Acryl Gouache stuff acrylic or gouache, or some sort of hybrid? I've seen it mentioned in both the acrylic and gouache forums...

Turner Acryl is acrylic paint. The "gouache" added to the label is to describe the matte look it has when it dries. It also has a fluid quality that is similar to gouache, and the binder is not as strong as regular acrylic paint.

giancarlo80
01-17-2013, 06:19 AM
I've worked with gauche on several paintings and took a chance on coating one with polyureatane, no different than varnishing an oil painting and no need to wait for it to dry. Next time I'll try boat varnish which has a rep for longevity. The one I did looks fine.

giancarlo80
01-17-2013, 04:09 PM
Why do I like it? Oh, let me count the ways!

{Goauche has the opague qualities of oil, but with easy cleanup.
Gouache has the water solubility of acrylic, without drying on and ruining my brushes.
Gouache has the travel capability and setup ease of watercolor, without such a strong need to plan and reserve whites.
Gouache can transcend the boundaries of many mediums---do a wash like a watercolor, blend like an oil, and drybrush like acrylic.
If the paint dries on the palette, you can just spray with water and it's good to go!
Gouache paintings are oh-so-easy to photograph because they dry to a matt finish and there's no light glare off the painting.
Since it's almost instant dry, like watercolor, you can paint, mat, frame and hang in a day!

What's not to love?

Jamie}



Perfect explanation and as I said, it takes to any varnish well.

cadman
01-17-2013, 06:08 PM
It needs to be framed behind glass using a mount to prevent condensation and fungal growth

Can someone describe or direct me to a description of this process please? I guess it involves more than just using a mat. The same subject was covered in Maggie's quote from the W&N website and it referred to a "linen inset." :confused:

I've been reluctant to paint with either oils or acrylics for a variety of reasons. After stumbling upon these gouache discussions and following some of the links and researching a bit, I'm starting to think this may be the painting medium for me. :clap: :thumbsup:

Deborah Secor
01-17-2013, 06:48 PM
Gouache and all works on paper should not be placed in a frame directly onto the glass, as this does not allow for any circulation within the frame and condensation can build up, resulting in mold growth. A mount between the paper and glass allows just enough circulation to prevent this. Provided your linen inset is between the paper and the glass, it will perform exactly the same job as a card mount. The frame will not have any effect on the fading of the painting you describe.

This is what Maggie quoted. I think the point here is that you not frame against the glass, but use a mat or other spacer. You want any painting to have some breathing room so that no moisture builds up, which sometimes happens if the paint is directly in contact with the glass. A "linen inset" is probably describing a linen covered mat, a classic look.

I love gouache for all the reasons Jaime mentioned and Charles quoted above. It has a lot of advantages! Try it and see what you think...

jdon4
01-23-2013, 01:05 PM
After reading almost everything WC artists have commended on about gouache, I bought some M. Graham gouache paints from Dick Blick.
Have been experimenting and really like this medium. It does take a lot of patience and practice, but then any medium does, doesn't it?

Will be looking forward to reading more and enjoying all the beautiful works of art that is on WC using gouache.

_Tomo_
11-07-2013, 09:38 AM
Hello everybody

I am a begginer and so far i have mainly draw with pencils and ink. Then i got some pastel pencils and did a couple of drawings with them. I mainly do automotive drawings.

So i started to think about different stuff to paint with. I wanted acrylics but their quick drying time is not good form me beacuse i need a lot of blending time since usually there are a lot of curves in cars.(but then again on the internet i have found some pretty realistic work done with acrylics) This year open acrylics finnaly arrived in my country but they are expensive, really expensive(they are like 2x the price of watercolors and acrylics) Then i tought about watercolours, but they are not opaque enough. And then i stumbled upon gouache. And then i saw there are many automotive artist that use them. So i got really interested in them.

I have found a set of Talens Guache extra fine 10 tubes of 20 ml for 30 euros. Here is there colour chart http://www.talens.com/media/1171884/Gouache%20EF%20Engels.pdf

Now i have a few questions

-whats this thing with gouache being fragile, does that mean that one can scrape them off a paper? Then they should be protected with glass?

-cracks that can appear on the painting if painted thick. How thick that is? Beacuse i dont have the intentions to do impasto, just a nice thin brush strokes is that ok?

I do have to say I am still deciding between these three meadias.

I would appreciate if any of you would have any advices.

dhgoodale
11-11-2013, 08:30 AM
Hello everyone,

Jumping into this thread a little late, but have been following with interest, so thought I would share my own thoughts:

I use W&N all the time …both watercolour and gouache and they are good quality. They are not especially ‘cheap’ or produce ‘cheap wimpy looking paintings’……producing rich colourful paintings is more about knowing how to handle the medium and how much pigment you use.

Gouache has been traditionally used by illustrators because of its matte opaque finish that reproduce well.

Gouache can be used with many different techniques, used thinly or thickly, on paper or panel. It can be used on gessoed panels and then varnished with a spray varnish, however this is not favoured by everyone. Ralph Parker (Old Tex) is an artist here on WC who uses this method almost exclusively.

As I use watercolour paper, I prefer to frame my paintings under glass, traditionally with a mat.

The type of brushes you use, the amount of pigment to water and type of support will determine the finished outcome and 'look' of your panting.

There are as many different techniques in using gouache as there are in watercolour, so it is important to experiment and find out which techniques work for you and your style of paintings. Gouache is very effective used on coloured printmaking papers such as black Somerset velvet paper (see Deborah Secor’s recent gouache paintings).

I have recently started a new art blog about my own experiences in painting with gouache…….there is a link to my gouache blog in my signature line below.

Gouache is a wonderful versatile medium and the more educated people (and artists) are about it ……the more it will be taken as the serious fine art medium it is.:)

Maggie
Hi Maggie. I couldn't find the address for your blog. i am interested in learning more about gouache. Can you give me your blog address?
Thanks, Doug Goodale

Deborah Secor
11-11-2013, 11:26 AM
Doug, Maggie's blog doesn't exist anymore, sorry to say. That post was from a few years ago. You might do a Google search to see what she's up to these days...

If you're interested, I have a gouache blog (http://deborahsecor-gouache.blogspot.com/) that's current. There's some information there on materials I use and a couple of step-by-step demos.

You can check out the Gouache Corner (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1330752), and its archives (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=759241), too.

TOMO, gouache should be shown under glass, yes. If you use it too thickly (impasto) on a flexible surface like paper it will crack or craze. Used thinner it works fine, with no cracking. Your Talens brand is good gouache. It should work well for automotive paintings.

Golden Chalice
02-08-2016, 11:20 AM
I love gouache, it is a lot like poster paints when you were a kid. I love the vibrant colours, opacity and the flat finish. Although I have just bought some Golden Liquid Acrylic, it comes in all-white with lots of iridescent colours that reflect when it hits the light. This works on top of gouache!!!!! I know, hold yer horses, shiny gouache! You need to put the colour you want down first, any colour (leave to dry overnight) and then paint the acrylic on top. I also think gouache works well with coloured pencils and ink pencils. I had a disaster with a cheap student brand of gouache when I first started, I nearly gave up. So do be aware that cheap ones can ruin your work, and it is not you being a klutz. I then switched to winsor and newton which I am very happy with. They are not the best, but they are professional quality and in most artists' price range. I tone and mix with permanent white (the same as titanium white), it keeps the colours bright, whereas zinc white mutes the colour a bit. But that's a matter of taste, there are no rules in art, and you can do what you like. But the reason I like gouache is because it's so vivid and it cheers me up and hopefully my paintings bring joy to others.