Wednesday, July 20, 2016

New To Stock - Winsor & Newton Calligraphy Inks

When our friends Queeny and Brittany asked if we could host a calligraphy class featuring color inks we jumped at the opportunity.  With 18 colors to choose from, we knew the Winsor & Newton Calligraphy Inks would provide the quality and color palette their students would appreciate.

14 of the colors use a thinner mixture of ink, giving a transparent, gradient look with a satin finish. These are suitable for dip-pens, fountain pens, technical pens and airbrushes. These bottles are signified with a blue cap.

There are four inks signified with a red cap. So what's the difference between the different color caps? The red-capped bottles are opaque. Suitable for dip-pens or brush. The opaque inks are available in Matte Black, White, Silver and Gold.

Following the class, I asked Queeny for her observations on these inks. Read below what she has to say.

And don't forget the check her work out on Instagram @travelingcalligrapher

"I don’t use too many inks let alone colored inks, but with my experience with using a few dip-pen ink brands so far, these are a few things I looks for in my inks for dip-pen calligraphy:
  1. Dense color
  2. Produces clean, crisp stokes without “spotting” (meaning the ink flow does not come down the nib too fast creating that water drop spotting look)
  3. Ink that catches and stays on the nib and flows evenly

"I used a 108lb bleedproof paper from Borden and Riley and my first observation when I put ink to paper was the ink was so vibrant and smooth, but it was a bit diluted, so I think if the paper was thinner and non-bleedproof, it would not work as well. All three colors have blue caps which means it will give a transparent look. I found that both Yellow Ochre and Light Blue gave me a beautiful dark to light, gradient effect. By the 3rd letter, the color became an almost transparent color. Crimson came out really rich, bright and opaque. It’s highly pigmented, almost blood-like, hence the name.

"I played with the inks a little bit and I started to mix them, I mixed red and blue and it came out to an awesome dark purple.

"Compared to gouache, acrylic-based ink, it won’t give you that highly opaque and thick ink that some people like for specific projects or special paper. I feel like any paper less than 70lb will not be suitable for this ink. 

"This product was definitely high quality and easy to use compared to most colored-inks out there. My only recommendation is that you must have good quality paper.

"Overall, Winsor & Newton Calligraphy Ink was so fun to use because of the gradient effect, it was clean and smooth, the colors came out vibrant and bold and the consistency of the ink was easy to use. This ink would definitely work for all levels and especially beginners if they want to try out a brand but don’t know what to choose."

Find Queeny Lu on Instagram @travelingcalligrapher
Check out her Etsy Site

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

New To Stock - Savoir Faire Opaque Watercolor Gouache Sets

Savoir Faire Opaque Watercolor Gouache:  10 Tube Set
We recently had the opportunity to play around with Savoir Faire's Watercolor Gouache sets.  With a choice of two sets, 10 colors or 20 colors, these paints offer impressive performance for a very low introductory price.

What is Gouache?
Gouache is designed primarily as an opaque medium, as it tends to be the bridge between watercolor and acrylic paint.  However, when thinned with water, gouache produces transparent watercolor effects.  Savoir Faire's gouache is no exception, these paints are capable of rich, flat paint strokes as well as thin washes and glazes.

We painted this study on a nice piece of illustration board
Savoir Faire's Watercolor Gouache Sets
We are very impressed with the rich pigment inside each paint tube and how easy it is to layer.  The flow of the paint is very consistent and the range of colors is more than adequate.  The finished look is suitable for sketching all the way up to finalized work.

While these sets do come with an included brush, like most "free" brushes included in paint sets, steer clear of this little guy, he sheds a lot.  There's lots of affordable brushes to choose from to get your gouache painting started on the right foot, including our Simply Simmons brushes (most sizes and shapes are only $2.82 each)

Savoir Faire gouache is capable of both transparent and opaque applications.
The Savoir Faire gouache sets are perfect for beginners and seasoned pro's alike.  We are blown away with how fun they are to use, how professional they look and the affordability of these sets. 

Stop in today to check them out!