All the red watercolour paints I have (Swatches and Comparison)

These are swatches that appeared in this Youtube video.

Red is probably the most mysterious colour to me among the three primary colours. So I've decided to create colour swatches of all the reds that I have to see their differences.

The colours used are

Here are the few things I learned.

DS Organic Vermilion, DS Pyrrol Scarlet and WN Scarlet Lake look very similar. In fact, WN Scarlet Lake and DS Organic Vermilion both use the same PR188. These are all warm reds.

Transparent Pyrrol Orange is my favourite red. It uses PO71 so I guess it can be considered an Orange pigment? But it certainly looks very close to red.

DS Quinacridone Red and Quinacridone Rose both use PV19. Quin Red appears to be more reddish Quin Rose appears more pinkish. If you dilute both, they look very similar. There seems to be slight granulation in Quin Red. Mission Gold Rose Madder appears to be a slightly muted version of Quin Rose.

DS Perylene Red and Permanent Alizarin Crimson look quite similar. They are really deep reds.

Shinhan Permanent Red and Mission Gold Permanent Red may have the same name, but they use different pigments and look different.

Quinacridone Magenta is not a red. Maybe that's obvious.

If I can only choose 2 reds, I would go with Transparent Pyrrol Orange as the warm red, and Quinacridone Red as the cool red. If I can pick three reds, maybe I'll add Perylene Red or Quin Magenta.

I did not use all the reds for mixing because some of them look quite similar and would probably create similar mixtures, e.g. the scarlets.

For mixing orange, I used Hansa Yellow Medium (top row) and New Gamboge (bottom row). Orange mixtures created with the warm reds and New Gamboge are the most vibrant, e.g. Organic Vermilion with New Gamboge. I'm quite surprised at the Quinacridone Red and New Gamboge mixture which is also quite a vibrant orange. The others can produce decent orange. The only muted orange is from Quinacridone Magenta.

As for mixing purples, I used French Ultramarine. The most vibrant and beautiful purples are from Quinacridone Rose and Quinacridone Red. The muted purples are from Organic Vermilion which is a warm red so it's not surprising. Perylene Red and Permanent Alizarin Crimson also produce muted purples. The purple from Quinacridone Magenta is more of a violet than purple.

Creating colour swatches and mixes is a great way to understand the colours you have. Now I understand so much more about the reds and know which colours are needed to get the most vibrant secondary colours.


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