May 05, 2021 7 min read1 Comment
Gouache is a highly versatile, water-soluble paint for artists. It has a very similar pigment structure to watercolour paint; a finely ground pigment with a Gum Arabic binder. However, Gouache paint contains opacifiers such as chalk/white pigment which gives the paint a matte and more velvety opaque finish once dried. Other unique characteristics are its colour brightness, clarity of saturation and it dries with an excellent uniformity.
Gouache paint has been and is used by Fine Artists, Landscape Artists, Graphic Novel Illustrators, Graphic Designers, and is also a suitable medium for Fashion, Children's Book, Botanical Illustration and more... Gouache paint is suitable for all kinds of styles and genres!
Throughout history many watercolour artists used Gouache either in conjunction with watercolours or separately as its own painting medium. Many 20th Century artists such as John Singer Sargent, Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Paul Klee and Marc Chagall used gouache in their painting and drawings, in creative and inspiring ways; such as creating a gouache painted layer first, then using oil or chalk pastels on top. They also experimented on various textured surfaces such as cardboard, canvas or wooden panel.
Like their Watercolour paints, Winsor & Newton Gouache pigments are categorised in terms of their permanency; AA, A, B and C. The colours marked AA are extremely permanent and those marked with a C are less permanent. These are known as fugitive pigments where fugitive means transient and not stable.
Daler-Rowney Aquafine Gouache has a 1 to 4 star lightfast rating. 4 being 'Permanent', 3 being 'Normally Permanent', 2 being 'Moderately Permanent' and 1 being 'Fugitive'.
Always check other brands to see pigment categorisation, especially if your artwork is going to be framed and displayed. You should preferably use an anti-glare glass frame which will protect the surface from pollutants and moisture. Also, choose glass with a UV filter, this offers added protection from fading.
Famous paintings such as 'Boy with a dog' 1905 by Artist: Pablo Picasso was painted on cardboard with Gouache.
'Miss Rubel, sitting in front of a screen' Artist: John Singer Sargent Painting 1885 34.9x25.1cm gouache and Watercolour on paper .
'Portrait of Maruska, the artist's wife. by Artist: Alfonse Mucha 1905 50.7x32.1cm Gouache painting on Board
Acrylic Gouache is a highly versatile painting medium, similar to gouache in that it is highly pigmented and opaque and dries to a smooth velvety matte finish. The difference between them is that the acrylic resin binder which renders the paint waterproof once it has dried.
The dried Acrylic Gouache pigment is more flexible than traditional Gum Arabic Gouache, more robust and maintains usually no colour shift once dry. Acrylic Gouache can also be applied to more surfaces than traditional Gouache as it does not need a semi or absorbent substrate. You are free to paint layer upon layer with out re-activating the layer or layers underneath.
Acrylic gouache can spark your creative streak as it is compatible to work with acrylics as well as traditional gouache and can be used with wet and dry mediums such as; fine liners, acrylic paint pens, oil and chalk pastels, graphite, and other acrylic mediums. This enables lots of free experimentation and investigation in both traditional and inventive techniques; to blend colours and create a plethora of textures, layers and details. Acrylic gouache is also excellent to use with stencils for the creative crafter.
Liquitex Acrylic gouache.
Winsor & Newton have been developing pigments and producing paint since 1935 and have developed a highly pigment range of 91 Designer gouache paints.
A selection of 10 x 14ml tubes. Makes an ideal starter set. Colours Included: Primary Yellow, Permanent Yellow Deep, Spectrum Red, Primary Red, Primary Blue, Ultramarine, Permanent Green Middle, Yellow Ochre, Ivory Black, Zinc White.
The Primary Colour set contains an ideal selection of colours suitable for the beginner who is interested in mixing colours. These 6 colours combine to provide an ideal selection for understanding colour relationship. Colours included: Primary Yellow, Primary Red, Primary Blue, Permanent Green Middle, Ivory Black, Zinc White
Low cost introductory set, ideal for beginners, 12ml tubes, 12 tubes in the set.
The ideal introduction to the range, these Aquafine gouache colours are made from a selection of modern high-quality pigments milled to perfection. This starter set offers a range of twelve colours in 15ml tubes. Often referred to as 'opaque watercolour', bridging modern and tradition, gouache is ideal for mixed media as well as traditional techniques. Colours included: Cadmium Yellow Hue, Cadmium Red Hue, Permanent Rose, Portrait Pink, Ultramarine Blue Dark, Cobalt Blue Hue, Cerulean Blue Hue, Yellow Ochre, Burnt Sienna, Burnt Umber, Ivory Black, Titanium White.
An introduction to Liquitex Acrylic Gouache - With a flat matt finish, intense colours, it won't crack and there's no need to dilute. This set brings together a selection of core colours to help you build your base palette. Superb fluidity and application: all with a permanent, water-resistant finish when dry. Professional quality, opaque or semi-opaque colours. Colours included: Primary Yellow, Primary Red, Primary Blue, Emerald Green, Titanium White, Mars Black, Viridian Hue, Ultramarine Blue, Dioxazine Purple, Scarlet, Yellow Oxide and Burnt Sienna. 12 x 22ml.
These Artists quality pigments are colour fast and have a soft consistency and are available in a 59 colour range, can be mixed with watercolours and inks.
Pebeo's T7 Gouache is an extra fine pigmented gouache. It is rich in organic and mineral pigments. This Gouache painting medium is both smooth and creamy, pliant and adherent. The range includes 74 bright, very opaque and light-resistant colours, which can be used on any painting surface.
Now you have your materials you can begin your gouache adventure!
I have had a strong interest in the visual and creative arts since a very early age. I completed with great success ‘A’ level Fine Art, Textile and Embroidery City and Guilds, Foundation Diploma in Fine Art, (BA hons) Degree in Embroidery and Textiles from Manchester Metropolitan University and a PGCE from the University of Huddersfield. I have taught Art and Design, Fashion and Textiles, Textile design and Fine Art print and Illustration for over 20 years. I have also instigated and program managed many projects for the local community. Before teaching I was a freelance artist and illustrator and decided 4 years ago I would return to freelance and commissioned work. I have created many domestic and commercial murals for hospitals and hospices. I work part time for Artdiscount as a content creator and product tester.
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