• Arlene's Artist Materials

Bright and Optimistic: A review of Koi Tube Watercolors

Updated: May 28, 2021


May 26, 2021


Photo-Illustration: Courtesy of the manufacturers.


The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed in the text belong solely to the interviewee, and not necessarily that of Arlene’s Artist Materials. Please contact with any questions. Photo-Illustration: Courtesy of the manufacturers.


Koi tube watercolors are a great option if you want to try out a new brand of watercolors or even if you have never used watercolor paint before. The 12 and 18 watercolor tube sets are a great quality student grade set with a full range of colors. The 12ml laminate tubes prevent cracking and punctures which makes for easy storage. I recently tried this brand for the first time using just a small plastic palette, water and a paintbrush. I have used many other brands like Winsor Newton, Grumbacher and Daniel Smith but mostly in a half pan or in my personal palette. I was very impressed by the great quality of the colors straight out of the tube! The colors are highly concentrated which allowed me to get a bright and colorful effect without layering. The paint can be thinned out with water for a translucent wash which is also easily layered for multiple techniques. These watercolors are made with a special binding agent which allows for even pigment suspension. I noticed that when added to a wet or dry surface the paint applied evenly and consistently.

My favorite color included in both the 12 and 18 color tube set is Yellow Green. Now that summer has arrived this vibrant pop of yellow green really sums up my mood lately, bright and optimistic!

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