I'm giving Schmincke super granulating colours a miss

When I read that Schmincke has released a series of super granulating watercolours, I was really excited.

So I did a search and found this blog post on Jackson's Art showing off the colours. The colours are beautiful but as I looked at the pigments used, I wasn't as excited as I initially was.

The 15 new colours are actually multi-pigment colours. They are convenient colours to help you save time from mixing if you use these colours frequently. There's nothing wrong with multi-pigment colours, or convenient colours, as some of the more popular colours are convenient colours, such as Sap Green and New Gamboge.

Instead of having the colours pre-mixed, I just think it would be more versatile to have the individual pigmented colours for mixing.

Below are the limited edition 15 colours released and they are grouped into three series, namely Glacier, Galaxy and Deep Sea. By the way, Jackson's Art (UK) and Overjoyed (Singapore) are already selling them. You may want to check Dick Blick (USA) too.

Glacier Turquoise (Pigments: PG50, PV16)

PG50 is made with Cobalt titanate green and is available in two variants. From Daniel Smith, there's Cobalt Teal Blue and Cobalt Green. Schmincke only offers one version, Cobalt Turquoise which is the light cheery pastel sky blue colour, aka a teal but more blue. This is a heavily granulating colours, just like most Cobalt colours.

PV16 is Manganese Violet, another granulating colour. Based on the colour swatch provided, it looks like there's more Cobalt Turquoise than Manganese Violet added.

Glacier Blue (Pigments: PB29, PG50)

Schmincke has two versions of PB29, French Ultramarine and Ultramarine Blue. From the Schmincke colour chart, it says French Ultramarine granulates whereas Ultramarine Blue does not.

This particular mix looks like it has more PB29 than PG50.

Glacier Green (Pigments: PR233, PG50)

This is an interesting mix. Cobalt Turquoise mixed with Potter's Pink.

Looks like the colour separation is quite obvious. That's the thing when mixing with Cobalts, sometimes you can get really beautiful colour separation because the heavier pigments will separate easily from the lighter ones.

Glacier Brown (Pigments: PBr6, PG26)

PBr6 is Mars Brown, a dark granulating brown and PG26 is Cobalt Dark Green. Both are granulating colours.

Glacier Black (Pigments: PBk11, PB35)

PBk11 is Mars black, a granulating brown black. Daniel Smith calls their PBk11 Lunar Black and that's used to create many granulating Lunar-named colours. PB35 is Cobalt Azure which is a soft, greenish light blue. Sky blue for landscape painting.
Strongly granulating. Daniel Smith calls their PB35 Cerulean Blue.

Galaxy Pink (Pigments: PV16, PBr33)

This is Manganese Violet mixed with Mahogany Brown, strongly granulating dark red-brown.

Galaxy Violet (Pigments: PR233, PB29)

Potter's Pink mixed with French Ultramarine.

Galaxy Blue (Pigments: PG50, PB29)

These are the same pigments used to mix Glacier Blue, but now with different proportions. More PG50 is used here.

Galaxy Brown (Pigments: PV62, PBr6)

Cobalt Violet Hue (PV62) mixed with Mars Brown.

Galaxy Black (Pigments: PBk11, PB29)

This is Mars Black with French Ultramarine.

Deep Sea Green (Pigments: PG18, PB29)

Viridian PG18 with French Ultramarine.

Deep Sea Violet (Pigments: PB29, PBr33)

French Ultramarine with Mahogany Brown

Deep Sea Blue (Pigments: PG50, PV16, PB29)

Cobalt Turquoise, Manganese Violet and French Ultramarine

Deep Sea Indigo (Pigments: PV62, PG18)

Cobalt Violet Hue and Viridian

Deep Sea Black (Pigments: PBk11, PB74, PB35)

Mars Black, Cobalt Blue Deep and Cobalt Azure.

Cobalt Blue Deep is one of the most granulating pigments available. I'm surprised it's not used for more mixes.

All the pigments used for the 15 colours listed above are granulating pigments. And these are all the pigments:

  1. PR233 - Potter's Pink
  2. PB29 - French Ultramarine
  3. PB35 - Cobalt Azure
  4. PB74 - Cobalt Blue Deep
  5. PV16 - Manganese Violet
  6. PV62 - Cobalt Violet Hue
  7. PG18 - Viridian
  8. PG50 - Cobalt Turquoise
  9. PG26 - Cobalt Green Dark
  10. PBr6 - Mars Brown
  11. PBr33 - Mahogany Brown
  12. PBk11 - Mars Black

So you actually just need 12 pigments to create the 15 new colours.

According to the Schmincke colour chart, some of the pigments are opaque, but the 15 colours are supposed to be semi-opaque/semi-transparent.

Watch this video from Kimberly Crick Art for a more detail look into the new Schmincke colours

And here's a rather detailed review by Alice Lim:



I bought Tundra Violet after

I bought Tundra Violet after watching an urban sketching video and watching its magic granulation. I had tried duplicating the effect by mixing ultramarine blue and Mars brown, but the result was disappointing. Tundra Violet is stunning, I plan to order Forest Brown next.

Thank you for this review, it

Thank you for this review, it sealed my decision to buy individual colours instead of these packages. Individual colours will be much more useful for me even though I admit that the online videos people have posted of these mixes make me drool. I do understand that there are many factors affecting granulation,e.g. maybe pigments in these mixes are more coarsely ground than those in individual colours, and therefore they may behave differently. anyhow, I shall use these ready made mixes more like an inspiration.

Yes, I find it is not so easy

Yes, I find it is not so easy to mix the colors and come up with the same look of Schminckes, but I loved Glacier Green so much that I bought potters pink (I have Daniel Smith's and I already had two different pg50's.) So far I found that WN pg 50 cobalt turq light with the potters pink I have came the closest. With DS's cobalt teal blue with their potter's pink it just isn't granulating too much

I agree with your take on

I agree with your take on these colors. I got a couple sets of the tubes from Amazon to try, and was very disappointed. Some of the colors are truly special (Volcano Violet is a stunner) but most of them are really not worth anywhere near the price. It took real effort to get the water content and the tooth of the paper just right for the best effect, and that's not what I want to think about when I'm painting. And, three of the ten tubes I ordered were filled improperly, lots of air in two of them and pretty much all vehicle and very little (separated) pigment in another. At the prices that Schmincke charges, this is not acceptable. If I try any again, it'll be half pans. But like others, I'm looking forward to trying some of these mixes myself rather than buying them already mixed.

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