Wordy Wednesday: Paint Observations

As i was mixing my color swatches I noticed a few things. first, the Liquitex Basics colors are thinly pigmented. it’s great that they are relatively pure pigments but many colors that are not traditionally considered truly transparent are, due to the low pigment load. Now this is not much of a problem when you are using colors straight out of the tube but it becomes an issue when mixing shades and tones.

It’s great for mixing thicker glazes where you want some brush strokes to show through. but you may find that when you are mixing colors that you reach for those colors that have a low pigment load more and more often.  while a 2 ounce tube of Liquitex heavy body cadmium yellow light is $12- $8 and a 8.5 ounce tube of basics is $8 you’ll find the tube of the heavy body last longer because you’ll use less due to it’s EXTREMELY heavy pigment load. Meaning I can mix more greens with the heavy body versus the Basics. The 8.5 tube of basics has less than a ¼ of teh pigment that the 2 ounce tube of heavy body contains. (that could just be dramatic but it’s significantly lower.) Roughly saying a 2 ounce tube of the same color could last 4 times as long as the same tube of Basics.

I should do a measured experiment to prove my theory but I’d rather use my heavy body paints for painting…

The other observation that I made is that many colors have an inconsistent texture or consistency. The tube of cadmium yellow light is like spackle where with tube of cadmium yellow medium is thin like heavy cream and the cerulean blue is like greek yogurt. When i open a tube of Liquitex heavy body (or golden heavy)  the consistency is the same thick buttery texture, across the board for every color, unless I add gel or air brush medium.

Treat yourself to one of those pricey tubes of artist grade colors, you’ll appreciate how much longer they last versus the student grade. The texture is also very very nice. Also there is nothing that says you can’t mix and match artist/professional grade with student grade.