Earlier, I said that there are four brands that I’ve used and recommended – Daniel Smith, Winsor and Newton, Sennelier, and the Blick generic artist grade paints.

All four are good.

I’ve used bad paints before but I don’t talk about anything I don’t recommend.

I’ll only discuss brands I recommend. And of all four of those brands, I like Sennelier the best. It’s for personal reasons, but I’ll explain why. Keep in mind, you may be looking for other qualities and art supplies often come down to opinion. If it doesn’t meet your eye test, then you might want to try something else.

The one downside of Sennelier – they’re one of the more expensive brands. However, I’m a full-time artist. This is my day job. So I have to use the best tools available, especially when it comes to colors.

Sennelier pops

Diana Dobrea Romanian model
Diana as Antheia, the Ancient Greek Goddess of Flowers

I paint a lot of flowers. That’s one reason I like Antheia as a subject so much. Painting her is an excuse for me to add lots of flowers to my paintings.

Flowers rule because they give you an excuse to use any color you like. If you know flowers, you’ll know that they pretty much cover every single color on the planet. So you have free reign to do anything you want, which to an artist is a dream come true.

For my flowers, I’m using Sennelier paints almost exclusively. Because Sennelier’s colors simply pop.

Look at them. Sure, it’s also my technique but we all know that great tools really, really help the craftsman.

I have never been more satisfied with the colors I can get from Sennelier’s paints, whether I had to create them via a mix or straight out of the tube. What you’re seeing above is a blend of both. For instance, I don’t own a single orange paint. Any orange you see in my paintings, I mixed myself.

Tube size

Watercolors cost more than oils or acrylics. That’s just the cold, hard truth.

Sure, I have to factor in costs, especially when doing taxes (and making sure I have money at the end of the month).

But there’s also the convenience factor. I love that Sennelier comes in 21 ml tubes. Whereas by comparison, Daniel Smith comes in 15 ml tubes.

Does that matter?

To me it does. I go through a lot of paint. To get my “look,” I use a lot more paint than most watercolor artists. For skin color alone, I’m painting with 7 layers of paint in order to get that softness.

At the end of the day, I want to know that I could finish a painting without running out of the colors I need.

Superb mixing abilities

You shouldn’t be able to tell when an artist creates a color via a mix or whether the colors came straight from the tube.

With Sennelier paints, you can’t tell. Sennelier’s paints mix very well.

A flower, painted entirely in Sennelier paints

This is from Melisa as Antheia. You can’t tell which colors I made vs which colors came straight from the tube. I like it this way.

If you mix too much of any paints, even Sennelier, you’ll eventually get a muddy mess. But from my personal experience, it takes longer to muddy Sennelier paints than their competitors.

That’s one thing I’ll discuss in my upcoming watercolor lessons. I’ll discuss mixing, both the strengths and the pitfalls. But from personal experience, I’ve had great success with Sennelier paints.

So once again, this is my personal opinion. You may prefer another brand and that’s entirely ok. You and I may not paint the same things. Or even if we do, we may have completely different approaches.

If you’re a professional artist or a hardcore hobbyist, I do recommend you pick up a set of Sennelier tubes and checking them out for yourself.

And let me know, even if you didn’t like them. I’d love to know what you liked or didn’t like about them.

Categories: Watercolors


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