Welcome to The Calligraphy Supply’s review on Liquitex Acrylic Gouache! Please be aware that we may receive a commission from purchases made through links on this site.
I used the Primary Yellow (PY74) for this review. This is one of the colours included in the 12 Color Essentials set available on Amazon. Gouache is a super easy medium for mixing and creating custom colours. Because of this, buying a set is more economical than buying individual tubes. Having a variety of colours on-hand makes it easy to create the perfect colour and shade for your projects. Take a look at my calligraphy checklist if you’re just getting started with dip pen calligraphy.
Company background for Liquitex
Henry Levison, the founder of US-based Liquitex, invented water-based acrylic paints in the 1950s. Over 65 years that the company has been in business, they have been devoted to creating pigments that are lightfast (won’t change colour one time), are safer for artists to use, and have supported the artist community.
Product details for Liquitex Acrylic Gouache
This product is designed to maintain the high opacity and matte finish of watercolor gouache. What’s so unique about this gouache is that it’s waterproof. Acrylic paints are created by binding pigments with acrylic polymer emulsion instead of traditional ingredients like gum arabic. While wet, they are water soluble, but are waterproof once dry. The Liquitex Acrylic Gouache meets AP standards by the ACMI (https://acmiart.org/productlist).
|This gouache is noted as “semi-opaque.” It performed pretty well even on black paper, but was definitely not as opaque as the more traditional gouaches that I’ve used.
|Liquitex Acrylic Gouache is designed to be more fluid than traditional gouaches. For painting, it doesn’t need to be diluted, but to flow through a pen for calligraphy I found that it does still need some dilution. It was easy to get it through the pointed pen, but I struggled with broad angle styles. I found that it was a little more difficult control and achieve super thin lines, but with a little practice is got easier.
|On 3 paper types, this gouache dried with a mostly matte finish that had subtle dimension. It still maintained some of the effect on sitting on top of the paper, but didn’t have quite the height and richness that the traditional gouache does.
|This gouache dried super quickly. Compared to a traditional gouache that fully dries between 2-3 minutes, this took half the time, if not less.
|There was no gumminess experienced with this product.
|This aspect is where this product really shines, especially for calligraphy projects. On all 3 types on paper, once this gouache was dry even spilled water didn’t cause it to run. If your project is going to be exposed to the elements, you may want to consider using this instead of a traditional gouache.
|Colour wet close to colour dry
|This pigment dried with a lovely, brilliant colour. It was a bit darker when it dried on the paper than when mixed, which is typical for gouache. This is something to keep in mind while you are mixing custom colours.
|Ease to clean
|It’s very important to not let this product dry on your nib. It becomes difficult to get out of the intricate cuts in the metal. Keep a little bowl of water and a cloth nearby so if you need to pause your project you can clean the nib. To clean out my glass ink pot, I was able to use mild dish detergent and a non-scratch abrasive sponge.
Liquitex Acrylic Gouache Products
This one has all the pigments necessary for the split primary colour mixing theory, plus a few other useful colours.