Thursday, July 22, 2010

NEW! Colourfix Suede

A new, softer version of Colourfix paper. Like the orginal Colourfix, Colourfix Suede is an archival quality surface suitable for use with pastels, charcoal, pencils, inks, acrylics, gouache and watercolours. Silverpoint artists might also like to experiment with white Colourfix Suede.

The paper's surface is less abrasive than regular Colourfix but is still able to hold multiple layers of pastel with its softer tooth. The base paper is a 500gsm hot press watercolour paper that provides a rigid support for painting.

Available in 8 colours and two sizes: White Suede, Black Suede, Jacaranda, Kangaroo Grey, Brown Paper Bag, Tasman Sky, Kalangadoo and Outback Blush. Assorted packs also available. Sizes: 19" x 27" and 14" by 18".

Monday, July 12, 2010

shoes for the moscow circus

paint mill art spectrum
What book about Australian craftsmanship would be complete without a chapter on Art Spectrum paints??

"Shoes for the Moscow Circus is an atmospheric, lyrical look behind the scenes of a number of Australian trades and industries, many of which are fast disappearing in the modern world. Arts writer Leta Keens, with photographer Oliver Strewe, visited more than 25 factories and workshops - including an umbrella maker and a cricket ball factory, a taxidermist and a bicycle maker, a tannery and a doll's hospital - and discovered far more than simply the history and processes involved in these trades."

Above is one of the beautiful photos Oliver Strewe took at our factory. It shows our oil paint after the milling process - ready to go into tubes and onto your canvas!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

thoughts about art

'I know that to paint the sea really well, you need to look at it every hour of every day in the same place so that you can understand its way in that particular spot.' (Monet)

'Painting is easy when you don't know how but very difficult when you do.' (Degas)

'Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.' (Picasso)

Monday, July 5, 2010

replacements for 'fugitive' colours - watercolour

permanent crimson alizarin hue
The Art Spectrum watercolour range consists largely of beautiful traditional pigments, but we have also included lightfast, permanent replacements for fugitive colours such as Alizarin Crimson - now called 'Permanent Crimson, Alizarin Hue'. ('Fugitive' colours may look fine at first, but will gradually fade to dullness over time).

Here's a small extract from Pip Seymour's review of Art Spectrum colours, where he discusses these 'hues' (from the English magazine The Artist).

'We often dismiss this pigment group simply because they are modern and "synthetic". However, I would urge you to think again, especially when working with the Art Spectrum watercolours. I found that I could make all the colour mixing and dilutions into subtle washes required but noticed that the colour strength is superior and the colour brilliance exceptional. Their Rose Madder (permanent hue) has the same soft edge as the traditional pigment, but as a paint it seems to carry the colour a long, long way, making large scale washes with minimal paint. The fact that their version of Rose Madder is durable and lightfast is another plus and a significant improvement to natural rose madder pigment. In a similar fashion, Art Spectrum have provided a permanent replacement for Alizarin Crimson, the bete noir of watercolour painters! The whole range begs exploration ...'

P. Seymour (author of The Artist's Handbook)

Please see our watercolour page at for details on the lightfastness and permanence ratings of our watercolour range. Please note that improved (formerly fugitive) colours are all clearly marked with the term 'hue'.
Happy painting!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Donna's tips on using Colourfix Papers

You will find some wonderful resources for artists (especially for pastels and oils) at Donna Aldridge Studios

Here are Donna's thoughts on Art Spectrum Colourfix Papers:

'These papers take a tremendous amount of punishment from artists who like to work their painting heavily or for those experimenting with their imagery or technique, making constant minor or major changes. For artists who paint gently and/or flow directly through the painting process with few changes or "surprises", the paper provides an enduring, trustworthy support that you can count on for consistency time after time. '

Donna has some special tips on removing pastel from textured paper such as Colourfix, and on using Colourfix Primer to repair errors: