Watercolours: Rembrandt (review)

A while ago I had a voucher to use up for Jackson’s UK (online art supplier who I’ve often purchased from) and though I didn’t really NEED more watercolours, I decided I’d try the Rembrandt colours, which were fairly cheap. Since I’d acquired a small Daniel Smith paint box from somewhere, I decided the Rembrandt pans would be the perfect thing to fill it with, so I got twelve half pans.

Rembrandt WC Box

At the time of writing this review, there are 80 colours in the range and the colours tend to be more transparent in general than other brands. Like most manufacturers, the formula Rembrandt uses in their pans is the same as they use for their tubes. As I usually do when I get new art supplies, I made a colour chart for my new paints.

Rembrandt WC Colour Chart

Before I started using the Rembrandt watercolours, I had been concerned that their focus on transparency might also mean that the colours just weren’t as strong, or the pigments not as concentrated. Aside from a couple of colours (Permanent Lemon Yellow and Gold Ochre in my set), this was not an issue at all. I mostly found it easy to get a good strong colour without having to put down a lot of layers, or use the paint with hardly any water to dilute it. I also found that most colours could easily be lifted with a wet tissue if I made an error, even colours which tend to be more staining in other brands (as a beginner with watercolour, I appreciate things like this).

I’ve had issues with some other brands where colours that were supposed to granulate didn’t. I was happy to discover that the Rembrandt Ultramarine Blue granulated beautifully. The only colour I was disappointed in was Phthalo Blue (Green Shade). Most other Phthalo Blue GS I’ve used from other brands has been a vivid, green-tinged blue (such as Winsor & Newton’s Phthalo Blue GS, my favourite example of the colour). Rembrandt’s Phthalo Blue GS just doesn’t have this vibrancy to my eyes, and looks a little more muted, almost like a Prussian Blue. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it’s something to keep in mind if you’re selecting paints and are used to the brighter version found in other brands.

Here is a little painting I did with my Rembrandt watercolours. The sky wasn’t blended as well as I’d like, but that was more down to my lack of experience with watercolours (I am more confident with acrylics) than to the quality of the paints. If you’re looking to fill out a travel palette, the Rembrandt watercolours are reasonably priced and strongly pigmented, making them well worth considering.

Rembrandt WC Painting

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