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Artists' Materials & Framing in St. Paul, MN


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Top 18 Art Supplies of 2018

As 2018 comes to a close, we thought it would be fun to look back on some of our favorites of the year. Not all of these were new products this year, but nearly all of them were new to Wet Paint. Read on to see what made our list!

1.Schmincke Horadam Gouache 10 Tube Set

2. Liquitex Acrylic Gouache

We’ve always been a fan of gouache paint, but there seemed to be a new excitement around it this past year. Gouache (pronounced like “ɡwäSH”) is the fancy name for opaque watercolor paint. Wet Paint stocks Schmincke gouache in open stock, but the 10 color tube set is a great introduction to the traditional paint. New in 2018, Liquitex Acrylic Gouache has the opaque, matte finish of classic gouache with the water permanence of acrylic. Both are worth checking out!

3. Schmincke Horadam 24 1/2 Pan Watercolor Set

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Schmincke Horadam 1/2 Pan Set of 24

2018 was another big year for ½ pan watercolors at Wet Paint.  The Schmincke custom set we partnered with Jennifer McLean on has sold out, but we still have limited quantities of the 24 ½ pan set, as well as options from QOR, Daniel Smith, Yarka, and more!

4. Super 5 Fountain Pens and Fountain Pen ink

5. Pilot Iroshizuku Fountain Pen Ink

Handwriting is also making a comeback! And what better to get on-trend than with than a new refillable fountain pen?!? Wet Paint stocks all of your favorite brands of pens (and inks, too, to personalize your penmanship). A few of our favorites: everyone on staff owns a Super 5 fountain pen…durable construction and free flowing ink make it a dependable choice for everyday writing; we have been charmed by the beautiful Pilot Iroshizuku inks…lovely selection of colors in gorgeous glass bottles!

6. Cigar Boxes

7. Xiem Art Bag

Storage and transportation of art supplies can sometimes be a nuisance when many items are odd sizes or easily damaged. But then came the Xiem Art Bag with its many pockets, wooden handle, reinforced bottom and 25 lbs carrying capacity! Swoon! We also love the classic, and always useful, cigar boxes- not new this year, but still a fave.

8. Sienna Plein Air 

9. New Wave u.go 

10. Etchr Bags

2018 was also the year for new & different plein air painting supplies- specifically rethinking the classic french easel or pochade box. Whether it was upgrading to something sleeker and easier to carry (u.go), separating the support from the box (Sienna), or using the supply bag as the easel itself (Etchr), this was a great year for finding new ways to get out and paint!

11. Leuchtturm 1917 

12. Koala Tools Gridded Notebooks

So many dots it’s like we’re contagious!  Unlike the measles, though, dot grid notebooks are showing no signs of being wiped out…and we like it that way!

13. Golden Acrylic – New 2018 Colors

Golden Artist Acrylic Paint is not new, but Golden did come out with some beautiful new colors for 2018. Plus, they’ve just revamped their online color mixer, which is a great resource for finding that perfect color or matching a color from an image!

14. POSCA Acrylic Paint Markers

The paint markers that everybody had been asking for finally arrived at Wet Paint in 2018…and they’ve been a huge hit.  Lots of sizes, lots of colors and suitable for almost any surface…let’s go write on stuff!

15. DaVinci Casaneo Travel Brushes

Quite possibly the most beloved watercolor brush at Wet Paint since Silver’s Black Velvet…and the Casaneo is all synthetic.  If you didn’t try it in 2018, you’d better make a resolution for 2019!

16. Gamblin Custom Oil Paint Knew Black 

We partnered with our pals at Pygmalion’s Art Supplies in Bloomington, Indiana and Gamblin Artist’s Oil Colors in Portland, Oregon to bring local artist, Ta-Coumba Aiken’s, custom oil color, Knew Black, to life. Read all about it here.

17. Stillman & Birn Nova Toned Sketchbooks

Featuring double-sized, 150gsm toned paper in either beige, black or gray Nova Series sketchbooks are the perfect “go to” for mixed media applications. Can’t decide which tone is right for you?  The new Nova Trio has all three of ‘em in one book!  (And, the answer is: they’re all right for you!).

18. Caran d’ Ache Technalo RGB Tinted Water-soluble Graphite

Super subtle hint of color in brand new pencils or sticks…barely red, barely green and barely blue never looked so good!

It’s been fun reminiscing about all of our favorite creative supplies from the past year…it’s making us excited to see what 2019 will bring!  What made the top of your list for 2018?

Happy New Year, everybody!


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Portable, Practical, and Always Unique: The 2018 Wet Paint Schmincke set is on its way!

Just in time for World Watercolor Month in July, and the travel & outdoor activities that come with the warmer summer months, we’re pleased to announce the imminent arrival of our 2018 custom Schmincke Horadam ½ pan watercolor set.  As with previous sets, the 2018 version features 12 moist, professional-grade colors in a Schmincke tin, plus room for adding more…but that’s where the similarities end!

Our new set is an exciting partnership with Jennifer McLean, watercolor & mixed media artist, and blogger at justaddwatersilly.com and doodlewash.com.  Jenn got her first Horadam ½ pan set from Wet Paint in 2013 and has been a fan ever since: “Schmincke has some wonderfully unique watercolors that I cannot get anywhere else and since this palette is such a fantastic deal, I’ve always supported Wet Paint every time there was a new palette out. To think you get a quality tin and twelve half pans which should cost over two hundred dollars.” As a great supporter of Wet Paint and our custom palette Horadam sets, asking Jenn to choose the colors for our 2018 tin was a no-brainer.  Her choices – radiant, transparent warm & cool primaries, plus two favorite semi-opaque colors – make this selection the brightest, cleanest mixing palette we’ve offered.  Check out the color chart below, then go to her blog to read Jenn’s account of her color picking process.  When you visit her blog, you will also find Jenn’s recommendations for additional colors to supplement your new set, as well as information about entering an exclusive giveaway!

2018 Schmincke Palette HiRes

Another major difference between the 2018 set and prior incarnations is the tin.  We’ve skipped the 18 ½ pan square format tin this time and instead packed Jenn’s 12 colors in a long, narrow tin that accommodates 24 ½ pans and a full size brush.  Best of all, this tin has a brilliant, full color watercolor graphic on its cover (and the Schmincke owl logo, of course!).  Beautiful!Schmincke Half Pan - Colored Tin

If you’re new to Schmincke’s Horadam ½ pan watercolors, you need to know that all 139 colors are filled a quarter at a time to insure the greatest consistency & immediacy available in a “dry” watercolor.  Also unique, the formulation for Schmincke’s tube color is exactly the same as that for their pan color, making it easy to go between tubes in the studio and pans en plein air.

We have confirmed shipment from Germany, and expect our sets to arrive in Saint Paul in late June. If you want to be among the first to get the 2018 set, we are now taking pre-orders. We will not be making changes or substitutions to the colors in the new set.  We anticipate a heavy influx of orders for this set – they will be processed in the sequence they are received. Order fulfillment may be longer than usual due to volume, once they arrive.

Schmincke Semiprecious Stones Watercolor Set

The other exciting news from Schmincke-land is our Semi-Precious Stone 3 Tube set.  This special edition set of 5ml watercolors features historical earth tones that are well suited for outdoor and nature painting (and are a fun addition to a springtime sketching session). Lapis Lazuli, Red Opalite, and Green Porphyry stones have been specially milled to create semi-opaque pigments. These granulating colors have subtle tints and are incredibly lightfast. While not strong mixers, we have found that combining them in a wash with a tiny bit of modern pigment such as Pyrrole Red or Hansa Yellow has produced some great two-toned effects where the larger particles add great texture, even on smoother finish papers. As with any particularly heavy pigment, these stone-derived colors may settle in the tube somewhat. If this occurs, we recommend mixing the pigment back into the binder (stirring in the tube with a long pin or needle tool) before use. These are a limited edition only available in 5ml tubes and will not be added to the standard Schmincke color selection.

If you want to create tactile and visually unique pieces in miniature, then new-at-Wet Paint Hahnemühle watercolor postcards are the perfect choice!  The round-edged, cold pressed postcards, with the address field printed on the back, are perfect for on-the-go creative souls, from watercolor and plein air painters to urban sketch artists. The 30 cards have a weight of 230 gsm and can be safely transported in the stylish metal box, to be painted and then posted wherever you are. Holiday greetings, a travel portfolio, a picture story…there’s no limit to the possibilities. The softly textured paper allows for easy use of brushes and every kind of pencil or pen, while the card’s natural tone allows the colors to glow.
Hahnemühle’s Watercolour Book is the ideal companion for urban sketchers or artists on the go. The natural white, alpha cellulose 200gsm acid free paper features a fine grained surface structure on both sides, making it ideal for creating full width panoramic paintings.  With 60 pages / 30 sheets, the Watercolour Book is compact while offering an ample number of pages for painting your memories on. Watercolour Books feature a handsome, durable cover and a rubber band to hold the cover together to protect your artwork. Available in the landscape formats A6, A5 and A4 and portrait format A6 and A5…click here for more info!

FM Brush’s Faux Kolinsky and Faux Squirrel – two of our most popular watercolor brushes – are on a great promotion this summer: buy any three (of any combination) Faux Kolinsky or Faux Squirrel brushes at 25% off and get a ½” Faux Squirrel “Whale Tail” brush FREE!  FM Brush Company has developed a proprietary blend of Techno-Synthetics that recreate all the attributes of natural hair brushes, but as a socially responsible alternative to animal hair. The Faux Kolinsky series mimics the elusive natural tip of a Kolinsky brush. It’s generous reservoir yields unmatched performance. The brushes are elegant with a cupro-nickel ferrule and long satin black albata handle. Faux Squirrel brushes are made of synthetic fibers that hold as much paint as a natural squirrel brush, allowing for a generous, even flow of paint…while retaining their shape and durability better than their natural-filament counterparts. Faux Squirrel’s seamless crimped nickel-plated ferrules and innovative soft coated handle allow for a sure grip through hours of painting. Made by FM Brush and completely assembled in America.

Da Vinci Brush’s Casaneo Series brushes are coming soon to Wet Paint.  We’ll be stocking these thirsty, synthetic squirrel brushes in a classic quill and a travel brush.  All the precision of your favorite synthetic, with the release of color usually associated with a natural hair.

It’s watercolor season!  Ready or not, Wet Paint has got you covered!


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2017 New Schmincke Set, now available for preorder

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2017 Limited Edition Botanical Set, colors chosen by Marilyn Garber

Due to the amazing support of our watercolor loving friends, our first 2017 Limited Edition Schmincke travel tin (Botanical, colors chosen by Marilyn Garber) sold out in record time. We were encouraged by the phenomenal interest (and ongoing requests) to put together a second set for 2017, which seemed appropriate given 2017 is the 125th Anniversary of Horadam Watercolors.

As part of the anniversary celebration, Schmincke updated the color selection of their watercolors. We lost a couple colors entirely to the raw materials no longer being available – Walnut Brown and Pozzuoli Earth, RIP. A few colors just got new names and a few got replaced with similar pigment formulas, so have both new names and reference numbers. For full details on the changes to old colors, see this pdf from Schmincke: What’s different in the new assortment.

The most exciting thing about the new assortment, of course, is 35 New Colors.

swatches

The new Horadam colors run the gamut – they include historical pigments, transparent earths and modern colors. We decided to put together a split primary palette that not only introduces you to these new colors, but also allows you to create magical mixes for a range of subjects. As with the Botanical set earlier in the year, this selection of 12 colors will be in the squarish tin that holds a total of 18 half pans…which leaves 6 spots to customize the palette to your tastes or outfit with your favorite go-to colors. *winkwink* We have free shipping at $99.

74774097^2Here is the selection in the new tin:

AQ344 Perylene Red Dark

AQ359 Saturn Red

AQ483 Cobalt Azure

AQ477 Phthalo Sapphire

AQ222 Yellow Orange

AQ205 Rutile Yellow

AQ370 Potter’s Pink

AQ371 Perylene Violet

AQ784 Perylene Green

AQ789 Hematite Black

AQ513 Viridian

AQ672 Mahogany

Important Notes: We have confirmed shipment from Germany, but our lovely sets are on the slow boat. Barring any issues with customs, we hope to see them by mid-October and are now taking preorders. There are two duplicate colors with the Botanical set –  Cobalt Azure and Perylene Green.  We will not be making changes or substitutions to the colors in the new set. In addition to the new sets, we expect to see dot sheets back in with this import shipment. We anticipate a heavy influx of orders for this set – they will be processed in the sequence they are received. Order fulfillment may be longer than usual due to volume, once they arrive.

Click on through to preorder the new set, $69.95 each

Want to expand your set with more new colors?

Want to browse all of the Horadam half pans?

Want the awesome gel pen that I used as a resist in the color swatches?

kateheadshotThank you to all of our water-media, Schmincke-loving artist friends. We could not make these unique items happen without your patronage.

Happy Painting!

Kate Katzer


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Only at Wet Paint:Schmincke Horadam Custom Watercolor Set

This holiday season we are featuring some of the unique, creative supplies that are regionally, or nationally, exclusive to Wet Paint. These items are great gift ideas that you will not find anywhere else.

We’ve talked about the Custom Schmincke Horadam Watercolor Set a lot since we got them in last year, but if this is your first time hearing about it, (or 7th) you know that we LOVE Schmincke and this set is an excellent intro to the Horadam Watercolor line. Extremely moist watercolors in a classic metal tin. This custom palette features a selection of six split (warm & cool) primaries, and six secondary & mixing colors. Our most popular item at Wet Paint is indispensable for the painter, sketcher, designer or architect.

Already have the set? Wet Paint staffer, Liz, will be doing a Color Chart Class with this set that would be a great add-on gift for anyone wanting to see what this set can do! Click here for more info!


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The Story of the Schmincke Half-Pan Set

Schmincke set color comparison: old set colors on left, new set colors on right

Schmincke set color comparison: old set colors on left, new set colors on right

If you have shopped at Wet Paint in Saint Paul during the past 25 years, you know Darin Rinne, our General Manager.  And you know Darin loves to tell a story.  And I’d bet he’d tell you his favorite story is about the Schmincke Half-pan Watercolor Set.  About 10 years ago, the U.S.  importer of Schmincke color offered Wet Paint a deal on their 12 color half-pan set.  We could give our customers a professional grade watercolor in a metal box at a comparable price to the competitor’s student grade in plastic.  The only hitch, we had to purchase 100 sets.  At the time, it was a big investment for Wet Paint, but we went for it anyway.  The set was such a success; we ordered the set 3 times.  Each time, the tin was a slightly different model. The fourth time around, no more were available.

The story continues and now Schmincke has a new importer in the U.S. but no watercolor set we felt met the criteria for our customers. Marcus from Schmincke in Germany came to visit us in 2011 and asked how he could improve their relationship with Wet Paint.     Darin and Greg Graham, our Floor Manager, worked with Marcus to put together a selection of warm and cool colors of their choosing which would be affordable and still a workable palette.  They found an appropriate tin with space to fit another 6 colors for expansion.  We worked with other independent art supply stores to meet the manufacturer’s custom run commitment. The set was so well received by our customers, that we needed to order more custom runs.  And we worked again with Marcus to develop a Schmincke Gouache set to complement the watercolors with a palette selected by our friend Roz Stendahl.

As we started seeing the end of our inventory, Schmincke informed us our tin was no longer available. Being such a successful program, Marcus and Darin worked up a 2013 edition which just got shipped to Wet Paint last week.

Liz Carlson holding the 2013 set and her color chart

Liz Carlson holding the 2013 set and her color chart

Liz Carlson, urban sketcher and Wet Paint sales associate, got into the act by creating a new palette of colors for the new edition.  The colors in the 2013 set are more transparent than the original selection.  It is a stand-alone palette of colors but has no duplication from the original selection.  The new tin is a longer box that has enough room to hold a standard length brush (or a pen) or 2 travel brushes.  And it comes with 12 empty half-pans.  So a painter could include the colors from their studio palette, include the colors from the original Schmincke Half-Pan Set or expand their palette in a completely unique way.

The new 2013 Schmincke Half-pan Watercolor Set!

The new 2013 Schmincke Half-pan Watercolor Set!

Kate Katzer, Wet Paint’s framer and web sales associate, is very excited, almost giddy in fact, about the new Schmincke Half-Pan Set’s arrival.  She has a number of web customers disappointed they missed the original set.  She likes the fact that the palette of colors is chosen by a working artist rather than a marketing department.  Liz Carlson’s color selection is appropriate for the plein air painter, the sketcher, landscape painter or portrait artist.  The colors are for warm weather, vibrant and fresh. There is a story behind each color selection.  For example, Liz picked Mountain Blue because “it isn’t as bossy as Ultramarine.”  She likes Cobalt Turquoise and Transparent Orange because they mix well to make great middle tones.

Wet Paint is pleased to offer our customers the 2013 edition of the Schmincke Half-Pan Watercolor Set.  Schmincke makes the best half-pan watercolors on the market.  We have made a unique color selection you won’t find anywhere else.   This set is priced ridiculously well.  And the box wraps it all up as a beautiful object in itself.  This is a watercolor set for those with great taste and an understanding of value & quality.  We have worked hard to bring you a unique, professional grade product at a very affordable price.  Visit our website to purchase and see the entire list of colors in this set!