31 October 2015

My Favorite Watercolors

One of the questions I get asked the most is which watercolors I use.

Over the years I've learned through experimentation which colors I prefer, which ones I like the most and how they behave and mix with each other.

When I buy my supplies I prefer to buy in open stock, and although it could seem it's more expensive, in the long run is not. I never buy sets because they normally have a lot of colors I don't like and I don't use and end up buying more...

All my watercolors are artist's grade, single pigment except two, the pigments are nice and rich and I don't get "mud" when I mix them. 
I buy them in tubes to refill empty half pans, only occasionally I have bought half pans.
As I mention, I have only colors I like, they are mainly Winsor and Newton Professional Watercolors, some Daniel Smith, a couple of MaimeriBlu and a couple of Holbein.

I have put together two watercolor sets, one to use at home and one I carry with me in my bag all the time.

The big one is the one that stays in my painting room.
 This is an empty box I bought in 2008 from Daniel Smith, unfortunately they don't sell it anymore.
I just found this one here, called FOME Empty Watercolor 24 Half Pan Box, it looks the same as mine before I modified it.
 It was originally design for 24 half pans but I bent all the divisions inside and now I can fit 39 half pans.
Here's a photo with its color chart, I hope is big enough for you to read it. It has the name for each color, pigment code and brand. 

My little set is a Winsor and Newton Bijou box. 
It originally came with only 8 half pans, but I removed all the metal bars and I can fit 15 Winsor and Newton half pans, which are slightly smaller than the ones you buy empty, otherwise it only fits 14.
This little box is not sold any more by Winsor and Newton, but I found this one here, called Whiskey Painters Standard Palette which looks pretty much the same as mine, but comes empty.
Find below
a photo with its color chart, again, it has the name for each color, pigment code and brand. I have recently replaced the Payne's Grey for Winsor and Newton Designers Gold Gouache which I like more than the grey, and I can mix the grey ;)

With the colors I have in this little set I can mix almost any color I need/want.

I hope this answers many questions, but please leave me a comment if you have any other.

Colors update 2016 here.