Leisure Painter Magazine - Watercolor Paint Review
I have been asked to produce a test report on a rather special range of paints produced by the Michael Wilcox School of Colour. Michael Wilcox is well known for his in-depth research into colour and for his brilliant publications on the subject.
I subjected each medium to a series of rigorous tests.
1: Starting with the watercolour I prepared a number of single colour washes and applied
them in three strengths: pale, medium and dark.
2: I repeated the process, this time using the broken-wash technique and experimented with some dry brush work.
3: I then prepared several washes, some containing two colours, some containing three, and applied them, as before, in three tonal strengths.
4: Having prepared six single colour glazing washes, I applied them, wet on dry, one over the other.
5: Finally, I applied several of the paints using a wet-in-wet technique.
I was very favourably impressed with the results of all the tests. I found the paints responsive and full of vibrant colour, which they still retained when diluted. Those with a high transparency rating produced particularly clear, fresh results and, when applied in successive glazing washes, remained free from any tendency to muddiness.
Naturally, permanence can only be assessed over a considerable period of time, but it was clear to me that the paints were manufactured from finely ground pigments in top quality binders and I have no doubt their permanence will match their other admirable qualities.
The most exacting test of all is, of course, to use the paints to produce a finished painting and this I proceeded to do, using an old sketch of a Venetian canal scene for the purpose (above).
The colour notes suggested warm, rich colours, so my limited palette consisted of cadmium red light, raw sienna, burnt sienna and ultramarine. Having sketched in the main construction lines on a quarter Imperial sheet of Arches 300lb rough watercolour paper, I applied the paints in full, liquid washes of varying strengths. I found the paints responded to every demand I made upon them and were a joy to use.
Review by Ray Campbell Smith
FRSA, FBSP, BWS, Editorial Consultant Leisure Painter Magazine
Ray is a well known and prolific professional artist and teacher whose work is represented in collections world wide. He is an elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a Founding Fellow of the British Society of Painters, and an Associate of the British Watercolour Society.