Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Watercolor Pans - a Test!

I have been toying with the idea to teach drawing and painting classes in my studio. I know what pens to use, and the paper, but the thought of watercolors crossed my mind as a larger project. What is the best set for the price? or should we go for pure quality?  Of course, I would want stellar paints to bring color to a drawing. But, buying watercolor paint in tubes is a huge expense. 

CraZart Watercolor Set with 16 colors $2.99 at Staples. Such a deal for the price. I wonder if they have a price break for multiples? I sprayed the paint with water to get it ready for my paint test. I didn't use the brush provided, because I am a brush snob, plain and simple. I felt like it was hard to get the color on my brush, because it didn't want to go. But, the consistency of the colors were great, an even pooling of color. Gets a star for that one. A few colors were pretty bright like Aqua and Purple, which frankly didn't make up for the poor showing of the rest of the colors, like Orange and Red.

Crayola watercolors are the least expensive and I can't remember the price on this one. I felt the colors were very fluid, but yuck the consistency of them was terrible as you can see every brush stroke.

Angora Watercolors retail for about $20 online. This is by far my most favorite pan set of watercolors. 36 colors. Love the choices. The colors are bright and consistent. You can easily layer them without upsetting the first layer. I liked how these pooled when there was too much water. This one for the win! Except for the price. Maybe two people can share a pan of paints? Maybe an online source has a good deal if you order more than 5? I would rather teach my students to use quality materials, like this set, if they cannot afford to buy the tubes of paint. Better to learn to use quality in the beginning. So there you have it.

The paper towel from my experiment. I keep these in a nice pile in my studio. Someday I am going to fuse them with Mistyfuse and make a quilt out of them! A girl can dream.
Hand drawn with a Sharpie Extra Fine Point Pen and painted with watercolors from my palette (from tubes). I was having a 'Calgon' moment and wanted to sail away from the stress of life.

Hand drawn and painted with the Angora watercolor set. Ordinary Objects.
Counting down the days until Quilt Market in St. Louis, Missouri where my first line with RJR Fabrics will be introduced!


  1. Thanks for the critique. What brush do you like, you never mentioned it?

  2. Interesting to see your test of watercolor paints. Like your tag art too!

  3. I am not a water colorist, but even I can see that the Angora set is clearly superior to the other two. And at $20 it is not a huge expenditure. Your comparison is great - and so are your painted tags!

  4. Another set you might want to test is Prang Watercolors at The set of 8 is very affordable and comes with a decent brush. The colors have body and depth. I have used these for years in teaching. When a color is used up, I just fill that one from a tube of Cotman watercolors.


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