Saturday, May 24, 2008

Paint Brand Poll Results

Thanks to all 146 of you who joined the oil paint brand poll. Here are the results.

The first number is the number of you who said you use that brand. After each brand is the list price/current sale price for a 37-40 ml tube of ultramarine blue from one of the online art suppliers.

102 Winsor & Newton 13.90/6.95
45 Gamblin 10.95/8.21
37 Old Holland 13.29/10.63
30 Grumbacher 9.25/6.11
22 Holbein 11.95/7.93
19 Williamsburg 12.95/9.34

5-10 Art Spectrum, Blockx, Cennini, Daler-Rowney, LeFranc&Bourgeois, Permalba, Schmicke, Sennelier, and Vasari.

All other brands received fewer than 5 votes. In the comments, feel free to say what you love or hate about any of the kinds of oil paint.

And if you have a second, please add your vote to the art medium poll at left.


Tracy Flynn Art said...


I use the Gamblin oils, and occaisionaly Rembrandt.......I find the consistency of colour and texture to be top rate with these and the price isn't bad either. My only real medium is to use turps....or the equivelent. And I just like them.


JR said...

Rembrandts are kinda nice but feel super light (they smell good too). I like holbein and old holland but they're so expensive here. so i settle for the next best, winsornewton which is pretty consistent in my opinion. For the more earthy colors i just buy the cheap stuff.

jeff said...

I used ti mix my own earth colors, I sometimes still do.

It's very easy and you get a top quality paint for very little money.

tubing some pigments can sometimes be a problem as I am not adding any additives, so you get separation on some pigments.

I also use small glass jars and put linseed oil on top to keep them from getting hard. Of course this is all in the studio.

innisart said...

Two brands I use that didn't make the list are Robert Doak ($10.00), and Michael Harding ($8.40).

Unknown said...

I made a leangthy and clever comment on your cloud post yesterday but the public terminal I was on conked out before I could post it. Anyway, great post yesterday. Love clouds. Interesting, these polls and suprising. Looking at the medium poll I'm extremely sprised at the high number of Photoshop user. I'm not antiPhotoshop but I'd love to know why people use it, do people like the way a Photoshop image looks or is it easier than treaditional work? I also just found out that at auction a digital print out makes only a fraction of what traditional media will make, generally.
I'm also suprised how few use gouache.

Anonymous said...

Hey InnisArt,

Ive never used Robert Doak's Oils, or Michael Harding's, but Ive heard nothing but good things about both of them. I'm going to order my palette of colors from Robert Doak this week. I'm anxious to try them. I'm pretty sure I suggested Robert Doak to James, as a manufacturer, but I cant remember if it was on his list. I forgot to suggest Michael Harding's.

I personally voted for Winsor & Newton, Williamsburg, and Gamblin.

Winsor & Newton seems to me, to be the most common brand oil paint, thats always has consistent quality. I use them most of the time.

Gamblin sometimes gets mixed reviews, I think they are good paints, but their cadmiums separate if you don't keep the tubes upside down. Their Cadmium Red Light is really bad about pigment and oil separation, so I always keep that one upside down. I usually have to have a paper towel handy to dab up some of the excess oil. However, most good oil paints do this.

I like Williamsburg, but their prices can hurt your wallet.

James, I cant remember, but was M.Graham's on your poll? They have a few colors that are top notch. especially their Naples Yellow. Its got a nice buttery consistency that I like.


Raluca said...

I don´t use that much oil colour,but I must say winsor-newton watercolors are really good.
By the way I received a 5ml precious limited edition Anniversary colour-''smalt-dumot´s blue''.I did´nt dare to use it yet:)).Someone know about this special blue?Is really a diferent pigment?Or is just a way to advertise?J.Gurney:I really like your site:info,vote,examples,all!I´ll try to embarc(?) myself on the weekly Art by Comitee boat:))Best wishes and good w-end everyybody!

James Gurney said...

Thank you, Raluca. I'm sorry, I haven't heard of that kind of blue.

Jason, yes, you did mention Doak, and I overlooked it, I guess because it was new to me. But I'm no connoisseur on paints. I'm like the guy in the wine store who buys the cheapest gallon of rotgut. Thanks to all of you for helpful advice. Now I'm going to be bolder about trying new brands.

Eric, sorry to miss you full comment on the cloud post. About Photoshop, it's such a universal program, and I wasn't sure how to set up the poll to separate artists who use it for their entire painting from people like me who only use it for archiving, color correcting, etc.

jeff said...

This from the Natural Pigments web site, this is also a very good company for all sorts of interesting things. Smalt being one of them. They are one of the only companies that sell historic pigments. I use there Boiled Oils which come in 3 viscosities and they are great, the extra-high is like honey or thicker, you can make some interesting mediums with all 3 of these stand oils.

Rublev Colours Smalt is an intense deep blue color. It is a transparent, medium grained color with excellent tinting strength.

Smalt was an important pigment in European oil painting, particularly in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. It is the oldest blue pigment based on cobalt.

Being a glass, smalt is transparent. The particles of smalt have highly reflective surfaces. As particles of smalt are ground finer, the fractured surfaces increase light scattering and lower its color saturation. Hence, smalt cannot be ground finely as many other pigments and must be used somewhat coarse in paint.

Anonymous said...

I didn't vote, as I mostly use Michael Harding, which wasn't on the list. They are really nice to use, and the web site is informative about the different pigments.

I'm going to try Natural Pigments at some point as well.

Raluca said...

I forgot to mention it,this little tube gift I received with ''smalt-dumont-blue'',is Winsor-Newton;they made this limited edition to celebrate their 175years of existence on ''colour-market'':))!I must say was so unexpected and surprising for me, that i suspected is nothing more than advertising!Still I hanged it on the wall,like a trophy(I´ll make it a photo and post it,maybe:)).Thanks so much for your answers:i was interested in Rublev colors as well,when I saw the vote list.Andrei Rubliov is one of my favorites icons painter(in ortodox bizantine style)-Jeff thanks for pointing out,I´ll check
this site right now!!Have a good week everybody and thanks once again!

jeff said...

Natural Pigments niche is that they supply restorers as well as people who interested in pigments and paint form the past. They specialize in the Icon market so if your into doing this kind of work this is the place to go for supplies.

They have a line of watercolors based on 18 century colors which I have not tried but it is interesting that they are so into this historical approach.

Another good thing is they have a forum and the man that runs the company,George O'Hanlon is very knowledgeable and is aways happy to answer questions.

Unknown said...

Jeff, I'd love to try these paints! I hate liing in such a small art world out here, so much of this stuff is unavailable!
I have to go to Toronto to Cad. red gouache because all that is available here is primary red...
Does anyone know a reliable online source?

jeff said...

Here is a list of a few online stores
They sell Holbein gouache which is very good paint as is Schmincke Horadam.
which is the same company as Jerry's.

Unknown said...

Thank you so much, Jeff!
I really appreciate that!
I can't get over the variety at Blick Art supplies, I'll be contacting them for sure and I've been trying to get in acryla gouache here for some time, because Ilove what Diterlizzi has been doing with it and they have that too!

Unknown said...

I'm commenting here because I read this blog entry long after the poll closed.

I've worked with different oil brands but ended up sticking with Blockx (amazing pigments and texture) and they are easily accessible here in Switzerland. New Holland is a very close second.

For gouache work, I've always used W&Newton.

Love your blog which I recently discovered via a review of your book elsewhere. So sad I didn't know about your blog a year ago when your Dinotopia paintings were at a Swiss museum – within an hr. drive of me! :-(