Wet Paint

Artists' Materials & Framing in St. Paul, MN


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Professionally Tested and Reviewed by Giovanni Balzarani: The Wet Paint Watercolor Sampler

Have you ever wanted to try one of each of the numerous watercolor papers Wet Paint stocks? Then let us introduce you to the custom Wet Paint Watercolor Paper Sampler.

We’ve been creating original collections of watercolor paper for almost 20 years, packaged and ready to go home with curious artists just like you. The range of papers changes a bit with each incarnation, as exciting, new sheets become available. Amongst the dozen roughly 10×11” sheets, you’ll find old favorites like Fabriano and Arches, less conventional choices like St. Armand and Yupo, plus a variety of other fun finds. It’s a great way to try different textures, weights, and tones without investing in twelve full sheets of watercolor paper!

World-renowned Italian watercolor artist, Giovanni Balzarani, recently tried our Watercolor Paper Sampler, and he came back with some great feedback, amazing paintings…and a clear favorite from his Sampler. Here’s some of what he had to say:

“I have painted real and genuine watercolors on different papers instead of [just doing] simple color tests; I wanted to test the reaction of my technique and style on different papers.[My] black [background] technique is inspired, as in all my artworks, to the impressionist pointillism by George Seurat.

Arches A300R paper test 2018

Adding in the “pointillism-style” black background on Arches 300lb Rough

I don’t like flat black, it seems a graphic advertising matter [like a print]: from the black there are not flat colors, that are in movement.”

Referring to the Arches 300lb Rough (Giovanni’s “winner” from this version of the Sampler):

“The best paper for my method and hyper-realistic still-life details is the Arches 300 lbs, because it keeps more the tone, it dries in different times from the others (sometime faster, sometimes slower but always with the right time to work /paint/ on.) As you will find in the step-by-step, colors have tones that do not change so much, thanks to the great quality of natural elements given from Daniel Smith; in this case the paper has a secondary role.”

“It has been interesting understanding all these reactions very similar to each other, but that have only one small difference: the woof (weft), that gives to still-life watercolor painting a different effect: sometimes photographic, sometimes raw, sometimes realistic.”

Giovanni also had some successful results on the Fabriano 140lb Cold Press.  

Balzarani is also a Daniel Smith Watercolor Paint Ambassador, so nearly all his paintings are done with Daniel Smith paint. Make sure you visit his websites to see more of his amazing work!

https://giovannibalzarani.wixsite.com/jopaint

https://www.instagram.com/jopaint/

To purchase the Wet Paint Watercolor Paper Sampler and find your new favorite, please visit our website!

This blog was written by the Wet Paint Marketing Team of Christopher Nolt and Kristina Fjellman. Follow us on Instagram @wetpaintart or on Facebook @wet.paint.inc


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What’s your growing creative edge?

virginiacircle

This blog post is written by Virginia, the Programming Manager at Wet Paint.

This time of year, rebirth in Nature everywhere offers us inspiration and guidance in its incredible diversity and beauty. Likewise, we are inspired by you, our customers, to provide an expansive selection of classes and events designed to spark and guide your growing creative edge this summer!

From Continuing the Artist’s Way, Lettering & IllustrationColor Theory, to Modular Origami, Planner Peace, and Drawing Faces,   classes at Wet Paint can be just the fertile community in which to start the seeds of your creativity or deepen their roots.

 

New in the garden…you’ll find a number of textile art related classes: Drawing Fashion FlatsDrawing for Textile Artists, The Art of Joomchi … and textile projects Shibori Tea Towels, Cochineal Bandanas, and Eco printing on Silk.

Break open that budding interest in watercolor in Getting Your Feet Wet: Watercolor for the Non Artist, and a watercolor series: Set Yourself up to Paint in Watercolor demo, Watercolor Color Chart, Summer Garden, and Science of Watercolor.

Celebrate Minnesota flora and fauna with these classes for youth, families and adults: Sumi-e PaintingMinnesota Critters Family class, Acrylic Painting for ages 11-15, and Observational Drawing Wet Media and Botanicals.

Need some quality art play time? Independence Day Fireworks painting, Getting Started in Visual Journaling, Art it Up! kids, and Alcohol Inks to the rescue!

You’ll find community to share your passions and processes with at one of our free meet-ups including Art Book ClubBullet JournalingSketch-In’s, and The Artist’s Way.

Perennial favorites hold the season together. You’ll find fresh and fortifying classes by top-notch teaching artists in watercolor, acrylic painting, encaustic painting, drawing, book binding, rosemaling and hand lettering.

To see the full garden, head on over to our events page to browse the whole lineup!


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Wet Paint’s 6th Annual Summer Postcard Project

Going somewhere fun this summer? Or, having a productive stay-cation? Draw, paint, or mix up your media on a postcard-sized paper and mail it to Wet Paint! We’re putting together an exhibition of mail art from our friends and fans wherever they may be. As postcards arrive, we will photograph them to share on our social media pages and then display them in our storefront windows. At the end of the summer, we’ll host a public art opening here at Wet Paint for all of the contributing artists!

postcardimage15There’s no limit to how many postcards you can send, but in order to participate, postcards have to arrive at Wet Paint via our friendly postal carrier – – no dropping them off at the store! Don’t forget to sign your postcard(s) and let us know how to reach you. We want to make sure we’re crediting you when we post the work online and we want to be able to contact you with details about the end of summer art opening on August 16th, 2019.

General Guidelines:
-We are a family-friendly shop, so please tailor your images & words to be suitable for viewers of all ages.
-We reserve the right to not display postcards that we feel are inappropriate for this activity.
-All artwork must be original.
-In order to have your postcard displayed in our end of summer exhibition, you’ll need to have it postmarked by August 12th, 2019.
-All participating mail art must arrive at Wet Paint via US Mail.
-Keep in mind that postcards will “wear” a bit depending on how far they travel- which is part of the fun of mail art!
-Contact your local post office for shipping and postage information.
-Send one or send one every week! We’ve got big windows!

Supported by Hahnemuhle Artist Paper

Wet Paint Address:

Wet Paint
Summer Postcard Project
1684 Grand Ave
St. Paul, MN 55105


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Introducing a NEW custom color from Gamblin: Sunset Orange!

It may be snowing and cold here in Minnesota, but we’ve brought in a little sunshine with this brand new oil color…

sunsetorangewithpinWe are pleased to introduce the newest addition to the series of Custom Oil Colors: Sunset Orange! Sunset Orange was manufactured by Gamblin Artist Colors specifically for Pygmalion’s Art Supplies in Indiana, in partnership with Wet Paint.

Designed by Indiana artist Mark Blaney, and formulated by Gamblin, Sunset Orange is a unique mixture of two modern pigments* and titanium white for a bright, semi-transparent orange. Sunset Orange is available in 37ml tubes for only $8.95!  This is a limited edition and available while supplies last.

As with the past Custom Colors (like last year’s Knew Black), all proceeds from Wet Paint’s sales of Sunset Orange tubes and merchandise benefit a local non-profit organization. This year’s recipient will be Feline Rescue in St. Paul.
Plus, any purchase of a tube comes with a FREE Sunset Orange pin! (while supplies last)

Just arrived! Sunset Orange t-shirts are also for sale. 

*Pigments: Monoacetolone (PO 62) used in Gamblin’s Permanent Orange, Arylide yellow (PY 74) used in Hansa Yellow, and Titanium dioxide (PW 6)

 

 


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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

schm24

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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Cultivating Our Creative Community

virginiacircle

This blog post is written by Virginia, the Programming Manager at Wet Paint.

Having planted the garden and tended to its growth along the way, now comes the harvests’ bounty. And we have a bountiful season of creative opportunities for you to sample.

New varieties abound! – from the satisfaction of making stunning Crepe Paper Sunflowers and jewel toned French Lace handbound Journals, from the deeper dives of Self Portraits 3 Ways and Experimental Drawing, to the rich exploration of creative life questions such as “Who Am I Now?” Organizational Journaling for Pre and Post retirement.   There’s a whole new crop of classes designed for the absolute beginner who wants to try painting and drawing with themes like painting pets, miniature landscapes, painting in the style of MonetMatisse and more!

 

Perennial favorites form the base of any excellent feast! You’ll find fresh and fortifying classes by top-notch teaching artists in watercolor, acrylic painting, encaustic painting, drawing, book binding, rosemaling and hand lettering…including a new Monthly lettering practice Meet-up on the first Monday of the month.

 

Bright notes and deep flavors round out the season! Look for show-stopping classes and demos by visiting artists in sketching, relief printmaking and silkscreen printing as well as other great demos and hands-on events that will surprise, engage, edify and cultivate your creative life.

To see the full bounty, head on over to our events page to browse the whole lineup!


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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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Fresh classes to fit your summer

virginiacircleThis blog post is from Virginia, our Classes and Events Manager at Wet Paint:

Summer is here.

Down pace your life to something more relaxed and curious. Summer classes at Wet Paint offer you ways to refresh your creative spirit, support for your continuing creative pursuits or perhaps explore new materials or techniques for the first time.

Here’s a look at what’s in store:

You’ll find many more single session classes along with a handful of shorter multi session classes ranging from lettering and book + paper arts, to printmaking, painting and drawing and some unique specialty classes.

There are some new instructors and classes to point out:

When the Work Doesn’t Flow taught by Ellie Kingsbury addresses those dry spells artists inevitably experience and how to work with them; Intro to Micrography taught by Kyna Levi  (also offered for young artists); Intro to Screen Printing taught by Tim Cronin and Jeff Hnilicka. They are also teaching a Summer Printmaking Sampler for ages 10-15Floral Abstractions: Onsite Sketching to Finished Painting taught by Paige Tighe; Intro to Calligraphy classes for young artists and families taught by Mary McKee; plus 2 classes in the works: Wet Paint Watercolor Paper Sampler Exploration class and How to Paint Dew Drops in Watercolor taught by Illinois Watercolorist Jane Mason of Watching Paint Dry.

Many returning instructors are offering new classes such as Custom Playing Cards and Tarot Cards taught by Jeff Nelson who has three offerings in August; A whole series of new Artists Way classes taught by Tara Tieso including Abstract Urban Sketchbook, a Mixed Media Triptych and Artists Way Mini Retreat; Painterly Drawing: Water soluble Colored Pencils taught by Monica Fogg; Os Style Rosemaling taught by Julie Anderson (pictured); Watercolor + Pastel Workshop and Watercolor/Gouache/mixed Media Plein Air Workshop taught by Carl Oltvedt; Drawing Pet Portraits in Pastel Pencil taught by Susan Beck, A whole slew of classes taught by Liz Carlson including Mail Art-A-Go-Go and Cut + Paste Illustration; plus two new offerings from Bridget O’Malley Handbound Book: Japanese Side Stab Binding, and Holding it All Together : Longstitch Binding with Cave Paper.

In addition to classes you’ll find free events and demos:

Monthly Sunday Sketch-In’s, Andy Evansen Watercolor Demo in July, Bullet Journal Meet-Up in August, and our Annual Summer Postcard Project all summer long!  Keep an eye out for more events and classes in the works on our Facebook page, website or in-store posters.

…and finally, there are numerous ways to join us for fun art activities in the community this summer:

Grand Old Day Master Artwork Selfie Station, Pinners Conference and Expo in Minneapolis, Monthly Artist Talks at Lyngblomsten, Lyngblomsten Mid-Summer Festival, American Swedish Institute’s Great Makers Exchange, Pet Portraits during Paws on Grand.

With 50+ classes and events, it’s going to be a lot of fun in the classroom and we hope to see you there!


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Wet Paint’s 5th Annual Summer Postcard Project

Going somewhere fun this summer? Or, having a productive stay-cation? Draw, paint, or mix up your media on a postcard-sized paper and mail it to Wet Paint! We’re putting together an exhibition of mail art from our friends and fans wherever they may be. As postcards arrive, we will photograph them to share on our social media pages and then display them in our storefront windows. At the end of the summer, we’ll host a public art opening here at Wet Paint for all of the contributing artists!

postcardimage15There’s no limit to how many postcards you can send, but in order to participate, postcards have to arrive at Wet Paint via our friendly postal carrier – – no dropping them off at the store! Don’t forget to sign your postcard(s) and let us know how to reach you. We want to make sure we’re crediting you when we post the work online and we want to be able to contact you with details about the end of summer art opening on August 17th, 2018.

General Guidelines:
-We are a family-friendly shop, so please tailor your images & words to be suitable for viewers of all ages.
-We reserve the right to not display postcards that we feel are inappropriate for this activity.
-All artwork must be original.
-In order to have your postcard displayed in our end of summer exhibition, you’ll need to have it postmarked by August 13th, 2018.
-All participating mail art must arrive at Wet Paint via US Mail.
-Keep in mind that postcards will “wear” a bit depending on how far they travel- which is part of the fun of mail art!
-Contact your local post office for shipping and postage information.
-Send one or send one every week! We’ve got big windows!

Wet Paint Address:

Wet Paint
Summer Postcard Project
1684 Grand Ave
St. Paul, MN 55105


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Knew Black is the new black

There’s a brand new color in town and we think you are going to love it!

Knew Black was designed by our friend, St. Paul artist Ta-coumba Aiken. His formula for a chromatic black has been adapted by Gamblin Artist Colors and manufactured from a unique mixture of Dioxazine Violet and Ivory Black for this limited edition. Knew Black is an oil color with a subtle cool undertone that works great in mixtures and when tinted with white.

 

 

Visit our store or click here to see some samples of beautiful colors that have been created using Knew Black.

Wet Paint of St. Paul, MN and Pygmalion’s Art Supplies of Bloomington, IN are partnering for the first time to launch this new color into the artistic world of 2018.

Best of all, you can try this cool, new limited edition color and support your local arts community at the same time: All proceeds from Wet Paint’s sales of Knew Black will be donated to The Show Gallery in Lowertown St. Paul. The Show Gallery Lowertown is a nonprofit art space which seeks to create accessibility in the arts and unite artists of all abilities.

37ml tubes of Knew Black are only $8.95 and supplies are very limited…get yours before they’re gone!

tacoumbaknewJoin us in our store on Friday, February 23rd at 6:30 pm to celebrate Knew Black’s debut! Ta-coumba will talk about why this color is unique, what inspired his choice and the name, and how Knew Black will be useful for painters. We’ll have solvent free oil paint stations set up, so you can try it out yourself.

Like the Knew Black Logo? While supplies last you can get a tube of Knew Black and a limited edition logo t-shirt for just $19.99.  Order today, or pick up your tube/t-shirt combo at the event on the 23rd.