I purchased Gansai Tambi watercolors which is a fairly cheap paint and I was wondering what I got for the money.
Gansai Tambi watercolors are available in five sizes. The watercolor sets offered are 6, 12, 18, 24, and the 36. I bought the 36 watercolor set. It includes 3 metallic paints: silver, gold, and bluish-gold color. The set comes in a lovely green, fabric covered box. And inside there is a transparent plastic lid protection to hold the pans in place when the box is closed. Size: 32.2cm x 19.9cm x 1.8cm.
The Gansai Tambi colors set is maybe something in-between gouache and watercolor. They have all translucency and some are semi opaque, and some have an opaque quality. Its resemblance to gouache paint allows the paint to be applied even to dark paper especially the metallic, see picture . When you want more traditional transparent effect, just add more water.
You can use the plastic lid for mixing you colors.
Typical gouache paint was earlier used by designers and illustrators, the paint can cover the paper and has a velvety matt finish. With the gouache you can paint opaque and in many in layers. Typical for watercolors is the translucency. This doesn’t make the Gansai Tambi watercolor’s better or worse, but Gansai Tambi is just a little exotic.
To get the paint to show on the black paper I had to paint two layers
The colors choice is interesting and it is maybe a cultural thing. My first Winston & Newten sett made me depressed. I couldn’t understand their choice of so many dull colors, after a long, long time I learned that they were meant for landscape painting.The most unusual and lovely colors are the Turquoise Green and Pale Aqua
The full list of colors is: White, Black, Cadmium Red, Scarlet Red, Red, Orange, Dark Pink, Carmine Red, Wine Red, Deep Pink, Deep Violet, Purple, Lemon Yellow, Bright Yellow, Mid Yellow, Light Brown, Brown, Dark Brown, Pale Aqua, May Green, Ocean Green, Mid Green, Olive Green, Green, Marine Green, Turquoise Green, Ever Green, Cornflower Blue, Cobalt Blue, Persian Blue, Blue, Menthol Violet, Deep Blue, Gold, Blush Gold and Silver. The silver simmers like white pearl and not like a clear silver.
Lightfastness is very important if you want to show or sell your art professionally , but I didn’t find any info in the box and so therefor I will use them for sketches only.
I could of course make a lightfastness test by making color swatch and place the test near the window for couple of months in order to see the results of their lightfastness. But, when you look at art history it can take years to change a color, if it takes 2, 10 or 50 years I am afraid this window test has no value.
The yellow on the right corner has crumbled, and the small pieces can stick to other colors.
You can wet the colors easily and the paint has a lovely creamy consistency. The pans are lage and thin, that makes the paint vulnerable for any “punch,” You can see here in the picture that some of my paints crumbled /cracked but this problem can probably easily be fixed, however, I would not want to bring the set with me on a field trip or holiday.
If I compare them to my professional, artist quality watercolors, I find that they don’t blend as well as which is a big disadvantage as some won’t produce pure colours. Maybe it not intended for mixing like traditional watercolors, But, of course, you can buy the big 36 color box and apply the beautiful colors pure? One more thing you could do is to just add some of your favorite colors by changing the colors you don’t care for. You can easily remove the paint from the pans and fill them with new watercolors from tubes which will dry out after a week or two.
If you read between the lines I would say that if you are looking for artist quality then these watercolors are probably not for you.
The flow and the loose watercolor styles are not easy to achieve, I still get the translucent and the watercolor low and a watercolor experience but I have to work harder then I usually do.
I don’t know if you noticed much of a difference, but I think the Daniel Smith painting took about half of the time to paint.
Some colors that I mix change a bit when they dry and lose a little of the briliance and saturation. Like the mix of the color 37 and 139 the color turn out a little bitt brownish. In one case it surprisingly turned out much brighter, like color 50 and 40. and some others had dull colour results. This makes them a little hard to handle.
I can see that I will use them in my sketchbooks and for illustrators. Most color are bold and packed with pigment, a little bit of paint goes a long way.
I considered the colors as student quality and Gansai Tambis watercolors set are well worth the money! Getting a new hobby can be pricey, but Gansai Tambis has a fantastic price. If you just got started with watercolors or you want to get a budget friendly set then you will get a long way using the Gansai Tambis watercolor’s for watercolor paint last a long time .
THE GOOD THINGS
are an inspiring set of colors,
are inexpensive and affordable, so therefore perfect if you want to try out watercolor’s for the first time,
have some colors which will show on black paper.
are well packaged reminding me of my very first iPad: Esthetic, clean and good design,
respond quickly to a wet brush, quicker than some other pan paints I have,
have extra large pans which are convenient to use with the larger brushes and it makes it easy to work fast, and for me this has been fantastic because i love to work fast,
are slightly more opaque than other watercolor sets,
have a place inside cover where they have labeled the colors and where you can swatch the colors . This pallet makes it much easier to pick colors while painting.
are absolutely perfec if you have children that like to paint with you .
have pans that can be removed.
have dazzling metallic paints.
THE BAD THINGS
don’t really blend well,
muddy up quickly when you try to mix the colors,
are not suitable for traveling,
don’t lift well from the paper,
the text on the underside of the lid is in Japanese language, why not add the English language?
the reds are too similar and there are only one brown.
dont have an indication of hoe the colors are resistant to light over time.
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