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Student Quality Paints Versus Professional Quality Paints. Which gives you the best results? by Jacqueline Coates
Hi everyone, not sure what happened there. I'm here to talk about student paints versus professional paints, and as you can see in this painting where I've actually used both.
You know the quality looks pretty good and you can’t really tell the difference because you know, I’ve got really rich, rich colors and I’ve got lots of pale colors. And I’ve got really intense colors. I’ve needed to have really intense colors as well. So, I’ve actually used the two so when it comes to colors that have got lots of white in them like for example, Mm. Let me see ash pink in the Matisse which is a very pale pink or even in Matisse the magenta light then these, these are student quality paints. I regard them student quality paints and actually, they don’t have a lot of pigment in them but it’s really fun because they’re all pre-mixed colors, and they make your life a lot easier when you’re color mixing and trying to find that that color, to add to your more strong colors, and I also like to use the Windsor Newton as my professional quality base. Especially because they’ve got a great selection of pinks and reds. You can tell the difference between student quality and professional quality because the names are different. For example, the professional quality acrylic pink is called quinacridone violet. It sounds more scientific. Okay, sounds much more scientific. Whereas, if you buy, buy a student range pink, it’s called something like rose red more like a lipstick sounding name. You know Rose Madder and this one’s called Media Magenta. Okay. Well this semi-technical. This color is called peach.
So you can of course mix all these colors yourself if you go through and do my free color mixing exercise, you can learn to mix them yourself, but it’s really handy to have them on on tap. So yeah, other colors in the in the Windsor Newton range, which tell you that they’re professional our words like Perylene, Perylene Maroon, Perylene Violet and Perylene really just signifies a pigment that was, is a man-made pigment and it was developed to go on cars, to stop them from fading. So it’s highly fade proof and very dark and deep. So, you can get Perylene Reds, Perylene Greens and so on. So you won’t find that in the student range because they’re much more expensive. So, professional range paints tends to start from about twelve dollars, fifteen and go right up to about 50 ish in the acrylics. And for the student range really handy colors like sand, which is very close to buff titanium, pale powder blue which is pre-mixed for you, there about six bucks. The Montmartre ones are six dollars some of their colors are okay. Their white is appalling. It’s really streaky but the colors some of the colors are really, really good. JB Burrows, if you go to Officework, sometimes I pick up a few handy extra colors petal pink. The liquitex basics range. I would call that a student quality range. They have some really nice extra colors like deep violet. And really made sort of, what I call a Barbie doll pink, very handy when you’re doing flowers to have some some brights already pre-mixed. But one thing that the student range can’t do is they can’t give you the brilliance of color that a professional range does, so the student range, range prices finished where the professional start so they finished at about ten ninety five or twelve bucks. Really not much more than that, then you go to the professionals and yeah, the price starts to go up. So, eighteen dollars forty for what essentially looks like a much smaller tube of paint. I’m trying to hold the camera and the tubes. Yeah. There you go so you can see it’s about half the size. but quadruple the impact.
I’m going to show you a little exercise if my camera will sit still for me. Yes, it’s gonna do that. Yey! Okay, I’ve got my pad here. Let’s take the Reeves pink. That’s a good basic pink. It’s very handy. I’m gonna take a bit just on my finger and smear it and show you, show that to you. Okay, so, there you go. Got a nice smear there. You can see that?See? It’s a little bit sort of translucent. It’s got a lot of flow medium in it, and it doesn’t really have a lot of coverage capacity. That’s the darkest it’s gonna go, it’s not gonna go any darker. It will dry slightly darker. That’s the nature of most acrylics. That’s another conversation to have. So, then I pick up my Quinacridone Violet. Where are you? Of course, it’s not here. One sec. I might be completely blowing my exercise here. Okay, thank God for that. Here’s my Quinacridone Violet. Okay. So, I just call it Q violet for short don’t get bamboozled by the names. Don’t let them put them off you. Does it put you off the paint? Okay. So, here you go, there’s a student one and here’s a professional. Okay? You see how lovely and rich that is? And yet I can still achieve the same pink when I add in some white. I’ll show you that. Just use, doing bit of finger painting here to demonstrate. Okay, so there you go. So, when I add in that pink, the white of the pink I can still achieve the same sort of pink there, but I can also go darker. I cannot get that intensity, that I can get in the professional paint from the student paint. I can’t get that student paid to go darker and still retain a bold, beautiful color. So for that reason, I like to have both because it’s really handy. Yeah, it’s great having these pre-mixed pinks. I love it it’s so handy. I’ve got magenta light, medium magenta petal pink,peach.
You know, when you’re when you’re painting using lots of these warm colors, it’s so handy, and I love that. But it’s also great to be able to have the rich original colors. So, that’s the main difference there. The other thing is that when you’re buying earthtones, for example, let’s go over here. We’ve got one of my students has painted this up today and over the last couple of days a beautiful cream rose lots and lots of earth tones as you go in you can see that? Lovely. Ok, the good thing about earth tones is the pigments are cheap. Ok? So, it doesn’t really matter what you buy. Don’t buy the $2 ones. I would never buy $2 paint. It’s really not a good idea. But you can, your earth tones aren’t really expensive so you don’t need to pay a lot for them and you’ll find it in the professional range, they do divide the ranges up into series 1 2 3 4 and 5 or series ABCD A for affordable, F for expensive.
But the thing is that the earth tones will always be the cheap cheapest in the range because you know, Burnt Umber, Raw Sienna, Burnt Sienna. I mean just the names are delicious something. Verumba light, Violet Iron Oxide things like that. Those colors are not expensive to start with. So, they’re not going to be have a high price on them anyway. So you can afford to buy those and the other ranges.
Another difference with the student paints and as I said, I like them both so when I say students versus professional I like both, I like to have both love all the bright jewel light colors of the student range but I love the depth and the commitment in the pigment of the professional range. So, but a different another difference I want to spell out, is that there’s a lot of fillers in these and in the student ranges. Any of these student ranges, they give you it looks like great value but they have a lot of filler that isn’t actually pure pigment. So, you’re just not going to get the bold, bold color out of it. And you can’t expect to and you certainly can’t charge a lot of money for your paintings with these either because they’re not necessarily fade-proof. They’re not necessarily going to hold their own against solar fade. Whereas, you have a permanence rating on the professional paints you’re paying you pay for what you get, right? So, I’m pretty sure these have got the, this has got the highest rating. I think it’s either three A’s or four A’s rating. And it means that they’re gonna hold their own, they’re not going to fade really quickly like a color photo losing all its color. They’re actually gonna hold this stuff together on the wall on your paintings and when you’re selling a painting, it’s very nice to have that assurance that in 15 years time, that the client is still going to get as much pleasure as it did from day one from his painting fifteen years down the track. So, you need to consider that too. Check in to your conscience. If you’re going to sell your work use better quality stuff. Use better quality supports as well.
And there you go. So, that’s what I have for you beautiful jewel like colors pre-mixed for you very handy in the student ranges. But commitment to brilliance of color and the professional paint, so why not have both? Very handy nice to have a selection.
I hope that’s been of use for you. That’s today’s little tip.