Art-n-Fly Watercolor Review

Hi friends! I have another inexpensive watercolor set review for you today. This palette was sent to me for free from Art-n-Fly with no strings attached. I have really enjoyed using their markers and oil based colored pencils in the past so I decided to give them a try and they surprised me in a couple of ways. Watch the review to see why.

Details: This set of 72 watercolors runs around $40. It features 72 half pans of watercolor, 2 waterbrushes in a large tin where the lid is white for ample mixing room. there are sponges for cleaning your waterbrushes. The palette is metal with a plastic clasp around all the metal edges for stability and no sharp edges. Paints can be purchased on the ArtnFly website or on Amazon.

Pros:

  • Paints rewet well (in fact I don’ recommend preactivating them with water of they can get thick)
  • Colors are bright and transparent with the exception of the pastel shades.
  • Large mixing area on the tin lid (paints don’t bead up on lid either)
  • Price: about 55 cents a half pan
  • These paints mix cleanly (use bright transparent colors for best results)
  • Wonderful gold and pearl pigments
  • Strong fluorescent colors.
  • Super opaque dark clean black
  • Colors match Pantone number system

Cons:

  • Paints activate easily but wear down easily too. I have notable wear on the pans over just a couple uses.
  • Pastel colors are streaky
  • Some colors are very same-y, There are several similar reds, yellows and blues in this set.
  • Palette is quite large and thick and may be inconvenient for travel or if you have a small work desk.
  • If used thickly on watercolor paper you will get a gloss finish, this might be undesirable.

Unique features: These remind me of Gansai paint with their quick activation, creamy consistency, and bright, glossy colors. If you like Gansai Tambi and want smaller pans with a greater variety of colors you will love these.

Bottom line, If you like to play with watercolor on a variety of surfaces this might be the paint for you. It is acceptable on watercolor paper but if you work in layers you will end up with shiny spots on your work. If you primarily do loose work in one layer these will be great. Like Gansai Tambi these are also good in poorly sized paper like cardstock and rice paper giving you more bang for your buck and versatility. I would use these more for crafting or Sumi-E/Chinese brush style work and use my traditional western watercolor for work on watercolor paper but this is a fun set to experiment with or lend to my kids or any craft friend looking to try watercolors with a very forgiving paint. I hope you found this review useful and til next time happy crafting!

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