Friday 29 October 2010

More on Daniel Smith Watercolours

I have now received two Daniel Smith paints, Quinacridone Gold (PO49) and Quinacridone Fuschia (PR202). Five others have just been ordered Cobalt Teal Blue (PG50), Quinacridone Coral (PR209), Quinacridone Pink (PV42), Burnt Tigers Eye (Primatek) and Indigo (PB60,PBk6). Due to the price being so high compared to other leading makes, including Windsor & Newton, I am being selective. Indigo may not seem so but I am intrigued that the DS version is based on PB60, the darkest blue of all, Certainly paints made with PR209, PG50 are available in other ranges but come highly recommended.

Interestingly Daniel Smith offer a `66 Try-it Color Sheet', available from Jacksons at £3.99p   . This comprises four rows of Primatek colours at the top, four `Quinacridone, Cadmium & More' ' in the middle and three Luminescent colours at the bottom.

Daniel Smith 66 Try-it Color Sheet

A closer look.

In addition a small three colour sheet is free. This comprises Indigo, Hansa Yellow and Quinacridone Burnt Orange (`One of our most popular colors').
Three Colour Trial Sheet.

On the trial sheet the most interesting one is `Quinacridone Burnt Orange (PO48). This is a fairy new pigment only offered I believe by Smith, Graham and DaVinci at the moment. I would describe it as a `glowing' Burnt Sienna - bright red-orange is Smith's description - , Hansa Yellow is PY97 and Indigo is PB60/PBk6.

I am intrigued by the Primatek range but they are expensive and before buying  I suggest you read what Bruce McEvoy has to say in his very extensive analysis of this range. . Many of the American artists who post on the Wetcanvas forum love Daniel Smith watercolours. The unique paints like the Primateks also have many fans.

Jacksons have already been out of stock of some sizes, including Q Gold and currently Q Rose so I suspect these paints are already moving. For amateurs though price is a big problem, probably also for some professionals. Currently the Daniel Smith paints are more expensive than W & N, Daler Rowney, Maimeri and Scminke to name just four leading makes. Are they worth it?  A full list of the Daniel Smith range is available on the website with full pigment details


hap said...


Glad you got the "dots"! Cobalt Teal Blue is one of my most used colors I love it's rich hue and granulation! I'll be particularly interested in seeing how you like the quins, and in particular Quin deep gold or quin gold for Native American skin tones. I like the primateks but use them seldom, and while I have some of the iridescents I barely use them...iridescent copper and russet are useful as dragonfly wings.
Have fun!!

Peter Ward said...

Hi There Hap. I ordered the Teal Blue on your recommendation! I'm looking forward to trying these colours. I intend to set up a mostly Graham/Daniel Smith palette as I shall soon have 23 colours (16 graham). I'm still trying to meet your standards for native American skin tones.

Jane Blundell said...

Hi Peter
I love Daniel Smith watercolours. They are the best I've used, and I've tried most of them. I love that they are largely single pigment colours rather than mixes, unless they state it up-front. You know you'll get the characteristics of the pigment, not only the colour, and I think that's what watercolour is all about.
Happy painting!

Peter Ward said...

Thanks for commenting Jane and welcome. Those of us who have used Daniel Smith paints like them very much. Some are unique and we'll continue to buy them BUT some of the standard colours aren't really much if any better than some other makes and the problem we have is the price. They are the dearest watercolours over here.