Tuesday, March 14, 2006


Anyone know what the shelf life of watercolor paints are? I have a
bunch left over from my undergraduate years, they are about 12 years
old now. The tubes are still soft and the color would appear to be
able to come out of the tube. I they are Windsor and Newton Cotman
Watercolors, which may be student grade.


Kim said...

I've an artist friend who works in watercolors and she'll cut open the tube with an exacto knife to keep scaraping color out of it. As for teh science of it all - you might find this interesting http://www.handprint.com/HP/WCL/pigmt1.html

Kim said...

oops - I really should preview before I send, pardon the spelling.

Caitlin said...

Watercolour paints might separate out into pigment and binder (gum arabic plus other bits and pieces, depending on grade - and yes, Cotmans are student grade, but still way better than most of what's out there). BUT as Kim said, you can cut the tubes open and scrape the paint out onto a palette to remix and use. In fact, I squirt out some of my favourite Daniel Smith tube watercolours into an old empty cotman pan set - let them dry out, then just use as normal.