art journal

Gouache 101 : Falling in Love

12:00:00 AM

Gouache... such a difficult word to say and spell haha. Well here it is... I bought a handful of the acrylic based ones from Holbein a while back. Loved it yet.. don't know why I didn't embrace it fully. Ah... wait it is coming back to me. It is because the acrylic based ones you couldn't revive once it dried. That being said it is just sooo lovely and chalky to the touch when finished.

Here is the first gouache piece I did a while back with the acrylic based ones a while back in my Molskine. It lends it self well to a more retro, eclectic sort of look in my opinion. So last month my interest was renewed and I began to research what brand and colors I would get to expand my collection. Then I read that the ones I had were different than what is more plentiful it seems, the water based ones.

A little background info: apparently gouache is not only a medium, but also a technique. A technique in which you add white. According to Winsor Newton, the best gouache is not made with white, but ones that have the highest pigment so that the artist can add the white themselves.

Very interesting this... although I decided to opt for the Holbein water based gouache (because there was a decent set in the designer colors for a good price ^_*), I did notice this. They were amazingly vibrant in color. When you add a lot of water to it, would act just as an ink. Then when I added white and played with a bit of black as well.... a bright turquoise color became lovely subdued tints you see here in the green segments.

The main difference between the the Acryla Holbein vs. regular Holbein gouache is that the Acryla is water resistant thus will not be workable once dried. The regular Holbein acts more like a water color so can be handled and renewed at a later date.

My first experience with the water based gouache was to use it straight from the tube. The colors were so vibrant, it is slightly more opaque, but I did not understand the real difference between this and a good tube of water color. However, once I added the white, the finish became almost as chalky and really opaque as the Acryla.

So which one to get? I guess it would depend on if you want something to be water resistant or more workable. For me... I have definitely fallen in love with both. If you haven't tried it yet... I recommend getting a few tubes just to play with. Its just lovely!

Oh and by the way I came across the Wetcanvas forum in which some artists discuss the different brand out there.  If anyone has any other personal experience with it, would love to hear. Please feel free to comment below!

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