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Painting with GOLDEN on a Budget

24 thoughts on “Painting with GOLDEN on a Budget”

  1. Can you please give links to the color charts on the Golden website? I’d like to see how the numbering actually works and can’t tell just from product numbers. Are there prefix numbers on all of the codes? Thanks –

  2. Thanks for this article about how to use Golden paints in an economical way. I also appreciated the link to storing the paints and mediums properly so they don’t dry out.

  3. This is quite interesting to learn.
    1. There are “low series colors” that are less expensive. I never thought to look at the series.
    2. Even 70% medium gives a semi-opaque film.
    3. Using OPEN thinner to spritz your palette while working retards drying. Never ever thought of that.

    One thing missing is a genuine red. Trans. (transparent?) Red Oxide and, strangely, Mars Yellow are the only red. Light Magenta isn’t in the running. A real, potent red in a low series would be a plus for we artists on a budget.

    • Hello Richard,
      thank you for sharing your aha moments! You are right, we don’t have a bright red in a lower series yet. We are always on the lookout for good pigment to add to our paint lines, but as artist paint manufacturer we are to some extend dependent on the demand of larger industries. Our senior chemist Ulysses explains that well in thisconversation, in case you are interested in learning a bit more about how the cookie crumbles in the pigment/paint industry: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=prBa4QjZALw.

    • Just a quick comment on your nr 2:
      It totally depends on what your starting colour how transparent the result will be.
      Golden used to have a very nice quick guide on the back of the tubes that showed properties of the colour – the really important one for this would be “tinting strength”.
      (The numerical values on the website is much less useful, it even takes a while to figure out that a lower number means “stronger” and a higher “weaker”.)

      • Hello Antonia,

        thank you for your comment. You are absolutely correcting in pointing out that the way a color extends with clear mediums depends on the tinting strength and opacity/transparency of a color. Unfortunately we can only provide limited information on tube labels due to lack of space. Safety regulations are also require that we use more and more space on the labels to meet current standards. A survey of over 1,200 artists indicated that the color swatch, lightfastness, opacity, pigment Color Index Name and Chemical Description are the top 5 most important pieces of information artists look for on labels and we are focusing on these aspects on our labels. The 1:1 and 1:10 glazes in our online color charts informs quickly how a color changes when extended- in this case with Soft Gel Gloss: https://goldenpaints.com/products/colors/heavy-body.

  4. Thank you for this great article – very helpful for my work.
    I also did not know about the 9 paint series differentiated by price. I tried to check my fav colors online and do not see the ‘series’ listed. The chart you have above is helpful, is there a download somewhere to get the whole 9-series list?

    thanks again for this article, I will be referring to it often.

    • Thank you for your feedback, Carol. We don’t have a pdf of all colors sorted by series number yet, but we’ll start working on that soon. Thank you for expressing your interest!

  5. Thank you very much, I really appreciate how much support and information Golden provides for it’s customers. Well written article and easy to follow.

  6. This was really nice!
    I haven’t tried the OPEN Thinner (+water) for preserving paint on the palette, only using Glazing liquid to “cover” paint if I’m interrupted. Which works very well for interruptions of 10-120 minutes. Keeping a big bottle of Glazing liquid handy for when the phone rings is always a good idea 🙂

    How about a similar article comparing colours in series (1-)4-5 to the more expensive series 8-9?
    Like the napthol reds (cheaper) vs the pyrroles (expensive) – and when would a Quin red be the best compromise?

    • Hello Antonia,

      thank you for your comment and suggestion to create a follow up article. It’s a great idea. We’ll take that into consideration.

  7. I specifically appreciate your suggestion of stretching more expensive pigments with Golden gel medium! Brilliantly helpful!

    I’m an old painter who has mostly been self-taught (some college art classes), always with student grade products, who is now free of family and career responsibilities to spend much more time on zeroing in and really LEARNING by doing.

    I’ve decided to follow the on-line classes and tutorials of Will Kemp of Will Kemp Art School. I’ve chosen to pay close attention to him and his practices because I’m done taking bits and bobbles from all over with limited success. His style of painting and incredible teaching skill have won my heart

    Will teaches using (mostly) Golden products and practices and teaches economy by using fewer, as in (the best) brushes and artist grade limited palettes, though I’m sure he goes beyond those. So in the interest of quality, I’ve been zeroing in on Golden also and pushing out the tubes of student grade “others.”

    I just discovered Golden’s website and subscribed to “Just Paint,” and look forward to using it as a major resource.

    • Thank you for sharing your recent insights, Jennifer. Learning about art materials can be a long and ongoing process, regardless of wether one has visited an art school or not. Glad to hear that you have found a teacher who motivates and inspires you. Enjoy the course!

  8. I think a palette of Iron Oxide, Titanate Yellow or Yellow Ochre, Manganese Blue Hue and white could be a good starting point for landscapes and still life that are a bit muted.
    Otherwise, in order to get as close to the primary colours as possible without paying a lot of money,
    primary yellow would perhaps be swapped with titanium yellow.
    Instead of magenta, go with Cobalt Violet Hue and Iron Oxide and primary blue and white.
    But I think the primary colours are for a similar budget in a 6 starter set with small tubes it costs around 37-42€ on offer.
    That’s really a good price and there is even a good brown, which is not available in a starter set from many other manufacturers.
    For that price, I can also get over the bluish Phtalo green, which I’m not a fan of,
    because it’s not as practical for me when painting as the yellower version of it, perylene green or green gold, if we want to stick with a colour made from one pigment.


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