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5 Equipment Tips for Painting with Water Colors 

water pencils

Thinking about getting into water colors? Here are some great tips for selecting the right equipment. 5 equipment “must try”s for painting with watercolours

1. Waterbrushwater brushes

Waterbrushe’s do away with tiresome back and forth between the art work and the water pot. Waterbrushes have a water supply cartridge stored in the handle of the paintbrush. This clever design allows you to squeeze the handle gently to allow water to mix with paint on the brush. Waterbrushes are particularly useful when using watercolour pencils to bring your art work to life. Waterbrushes easy lubrication makes mixing colours effective when using water colour blocks. The drawback of the waterbrush is that they are pricey and out offer a limited selection of brush heads.


2. Watercolour Pencils

A common birthday gift the humble watercolour pencil is more than a crayon. The trick with water colour pencils is mastering the application. You do not need to colour the whole area with pencil. Shade liberally the darker areas and push the water from these spots to softly colour the rest of the desired area. Simple when you know how and creates beautiful soft watercolour work. Watercolour pencils are cheap equipment and ideal for the part-time painter. Because the paint is presented in pencil form, as long as they are kept dry they last for an eternity and take up little space. As with all pencils, sharpening and lead breaks are your biggest hassle.

water pencils

water pencils

3. Watercolour Block set

The next step up from watercolour pencils is watercolour block sets. These are the more traditional presentation if watercolour paints. Squares of each individual colour that can be liquidated when water is added. Watercolour block sets allow the artist to be able to mix colours easily and manipulate the thickness of the paint as well. Mixing colours does make watercolour bocks prone to colour contamination. A mixing tray and regular brush cleaning is advised when using watercolour blocks to avoid colour contamination. Less portable than watercolour pencils, this medium requires water and a brush during application. Despite the extra hassle watercolour blocks require they do give the artist greater versatility with the medium of watercolour. Travel sets with lids and even pocket brushes are east to come by and well worth a try.

4. Watercolour Paste

Often a little more expensive water colour paste allows you to play around with the consistency of the watercolour more easily because the paint comes in a liquid form. This material again needs to be used with a mixing tray, but has a very different feel to watercolour blocks. The quality and price of water colour paste can vary vastly but it’s a form that is great for all artists, especially kids. Watercolour paste, being water based, doesn’t stain clothes and so if often the pain medium of choice. As Said before, some of the higher quality watercolour paste paints are worth a try for more devout artists too. The viscosity of this medium allows you to use watercolour in a very non-conventional way. Add a little water and you can create your classic washes but in a Monet straight from the tube style can also be done. Due to the solubility of these paints you still have to be careful on how thick you lay it and to preserve your work so that it doesn’t run from later water contact.

5. Watercolour Markers

Ultimate in non-messy portability. No water pots, no paint pallets, you don’t even need a brush! These pens offer that light touch of watercolour colour to your works in the easiest to use pen form. Usually only found in specific art or pen shops, this is more of a specialist piece of equipment and one you may not just get for your 4 year old on a whim, but produces accurate results very evenly and quickly. Often a favorite of cartoonists and although not your conventional watercolour equipment, it’s simplicity makes it well worth a try.

water color markers

What have you tried? What did you think? If you’ve not used all of these then go on a try what you haven’t before, you may discover something magical..


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