Friday, January 8, 2016

Japanese Watercolor

Here are my Japanese watercolors.

I was in the new (yay!) Hobby Lobby in my hometown the other day and found these.  Paint.  Color.  Japanese.  Had to have.

But really I had been curious about Japanese watercolor.  I'm not an expert, but Japanese and Chinese watercolors are formulated differently from "normal" watercolor.  They are like, but I believe still different from, gouache.

I have a strong tendency to put too much water into my watercolor.  So gouache is good for me, because it is "opaque watercolor" and thus thicker/more intense.  I've heard people say you can't reconstitute gouache, but that is nonsense because I don't have a problem with it.  But it tends to be about the same difficulty as watercolor (maybe slightly easier/faster)--as in, not difficult, but I'm not very patient or...something.  These watercolors, however, are a dream to activate.  They are, as best I can describe, *soft*.

I got to "create a color chart by painting the color onto the chart on the back side of a lid".

Here are my first charts.

And I made a new comparative one *just for you*.

I made an effort to activate the paint in the same manner for both types of watercolor, and along the outside I used some gouache.  As you can see, there isn't a massive amount of visual difference, though the Japanese watercolors are a good bit smoother and more consistent.  I wasn't trying to get it really dark or intense (I was probably slightly light handed with the Japanese watercolor, just to give the other a sporting chance), just a quick activation for each color.  Much more pigment came off my brush with the new paint.

As I said, these just feel so soft to work with; they are wonderful.

Also, I have learned some new Japanese color names, which is exciting, because it is strangely difficult to determine specific color names in another language, like "crimson" or "olive green", etc.

I may need to do more color charts.


Jessica P said...

I have some point...that there is a difference in formulation in Japanese wc.

There are 2 kinds of gouache- acrylic gouache (doesn't re-open with water) and regular gouache (does re-open with water)

I prefer regular gouache though I can see the definite benefits of both.

This set is GORGEOUS. It is so gorgeous that I want one!! LOL
THAT GREEN! I am all googly eyed.

Thank you for making that beautiful comparison chart *just for me*.


Lisa Greenbow said...

It is always fun to find new paints. I bet you can't wait to use them.