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What are the classifications of watercolor paints?

2023-10-18

Watercolor paints can be classified based on their composition, properties, and characteristics. Here are some common classifications of watercolor paints:

Pigment-based watercolors: These paints are made with finely ground pigments that are mixed with a binder and water to create a paint. Pigment-based watercolors are known for their vibrant colors and excellent lightfastness.

Dye-based watercolors: These paints are made with water-soluble dyes that are mixed with a binder and water to create a paint. Dye-based watercolors are known for their intense and transparent colors, but they tend to fade faster than pigment-based watercolors.

Student-grade watercolors: These paints are less expensive and often have a lower pigment concentration than artist-grade watercolors. They are suitable for beginners or for artists who don't require the highest quality paints.

Artist-grade watercolors: These paints have a higher pigment concentration and are made with the highest quality materials. They are more expensive than student-grade watercolors, but they offer better color intensity and lightfastness.

Transparent watercolors: These paints allow the white of the paper to show through, creating a luminous effect. They are often used for glazes, washes, and other techniques where transparency is important.

Opaque watercolors: These paints cover the surface of the paper completely and are often used for painting solid shapes or for creating textures and effects.

Pan watercolors: These paints come in small pans or cakes that can be reactivated with water. They are convenient for travel and outdoor painting.

Tube watercolors: These paints come in tubes and can be squeezed out onto a palette for mixing. They are more versatile than pan watercolors and can be used for a wide range of painting techniques.

Specialty watercolors: These include metallic, iridescent, and fluorescent watercolors, as well as watercolors that are designed for specific techniques or surfaces, such as gouache or watercolor pencils.

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