Tools: Gouache

I’ve not given gouache a real chance to woo me, so I decided to play with some very old gouache before I purchased better quality tubes.  When I moved into watercolors, I enjoyed them for their transparent washes, so gouache, which is thick and heavy (to me) was not interesting.

A gouache is an opaque “watercolor”, meaning it is water soluble, but the difference is that when watercolor is applied, the paper and any sketching underneath will show through, whereas when a layer of gouache is applied, it is likely to cover paper and light sketch lines.

My old pans smelled funny.

Okay, simple test and getting to know you, above… not too happy.

Another test, trying hard to wrap my mind around the opaque nature.
Had a little more success, partially because I let the pans get very wet
before playing in them.  Still not happy though.

Ben Carlin’s Amphibious “Boat” was half land vehicle, half boat, aptly called the “Half Safe”.  I was attracted by the bright yellow color, and the story was thrilling!
This was part of a Virtual Sketchwalk in our FB group around Perth, AU.

I used gouache, for most parts of the boat itself.  I had more success.
I’m not sure yet… but intrigued!
LOOK at that intense yellow!  Wow!  You can’t easily get that from a watercolor.
My plan after these tests is to purchase a couple of quality brand colors.

Recommendations from gouache lovers are welcome!

Process images, above.

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About dkatiepowellart

hollywood baby turned beach gurl turned steel&glass city gurl turned cowgurl turned herb gurl turned green city gurl. . . artist writer photographer. . . cat lover but misses our big dogs, gone to heaven. . . buddhist and interested in the study of spiritual traditions. . . foodie, organic, lover of all things mik, partner in conservation business mpfconservation, consummate blogger, making a dream happen, insomniac who is either reading buddhist teachings or not-so-bloody mysteries or autobio journal thangs early in the morning when i can't sleep
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5 Responses to Tools: Gouache

  1. When you want opaque vivid and happy colors it seems like a good choice. I love the colors you combined for your test. I only use white gouache for highlights and haven’t tried any other colors as I like watercolor too.


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