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New Schmincke Super Granulating Watercolours

Since their introduction in 1891, Schmincke Horadam Watercolours have been famed for their colours, control, and innovation. Following intense interest in the 22 granulating colours included in the Horadam standard assortment (indicated by a “G” in the colour chart), Schmincke have released an additional 15 special “Super Granulating” colours in 3 colour groups: Deep Sea, Glacier, and Galaxy.

Granulation is a natural effect where particles of pigment too coarse or heavy to remain evenly dispersed in water collect in the grain of the paper. In chemistry, it’s referred to as flocculation, where particles come out of suspension to sediment under the form of “floc” or flake. This only happens with certain pigments, such as French Ultramarine, some earth pigments, and some metal oxides like cobalt.

By combining at least 2 granulating Horadam pigments, the Horadam Super Granulating effect is made. This creates a wider range of visual textures for added depth and interest. An added effect with many of the Super Granulating colours is a duotone, or two simultaneous colours appearing as the different pigments flocculate.


Expanding Horadam’s textural possibilities: most of the 139 Horadam standard colours are non-granulating, such as Helio Green SC14 514, alongside the 22 naturally granulating colours like Viridian SC14 513. The new Super Granulating Watercolours, like Deep Sea Green SC19 954 add 15 more of these textural delights!

This extra chromatic density can be clearly seen in Deep Sea Green (954 above), where both dark blue and green are visible in a single application, as the Ultramarine and Chromium pigments used in this colour separate into a complex textured hue. Compare this to the Viridian, where the single pigment granulates beautifully but contains only the green tone, with the white of the paper apparent under the paint.

As watercolours, they respond to controlled measures of paint plus water, in combination with specific papers. Maximum effect is achieved when the perfect ratio of paint to water plays with the particular surface texture of the paper. The colour should not be too concentrated, or the pigments won’t separate so obviously, but not be so dilute that there’s insufficient colour to show the effect.

As all Horadam Super Granulating Watercolours are non-staining, they can be re-worked to heighten the granulating effect, if originally painted too densely.


While the separate granulation of blue and green is apparent in this wash of Deep Sea Green (SC19954), there is little texture on the Hot Press Fabriano Artistico (above) to attract deposits of pigment.  

The paper strongly affects the granulation too. While the pigment will still flocculate on a smooth paper, as this is the nature of a granulating colour, the appearance is quite different from that on a strongly textured paper. The more pits and pockets on the surface for the pigment to collect in, the more dramatic the contrast with the higher peaks, where less colour finds purchase.


The grain of the Cold Press Harmony paper (above) captures pigment, revealing dramatic colour shift between peaks and troughs in the surface texture.

Watercolours work especially well on surface-sized papers, and the Super Granulating range is no different. Surface-sized paper include Harmony and The Collection from Hahnemühle, Fabriano Artistico, and Arches Aquarelle. More absorbent papers (i.e. without surface-sizing) require using a little more water.


To maximise the granulation, choose a rough paper, such as the Hahnemühle Collection Rough (above) that will provide plenty of texture for pigments to gather in its complex surface structure.

The Super Granulating Watercolours offer visual texture and complex colour density to watercolour painting, especially in landscape and abstract subjects, where these are regularly required.

As well as providing a new range of textural delights, Horadam Super Granulation Watercolours presents 15 new colours to play with, both pure and in mixtures, dramatically extending the watercolour palette.


Horadam Translucent Yellow SC14 209 is mixed with four different Super Granulating Watercolours to illustrate how a whole new range of landscape colours can now be achieved.

Mixing Super Granulating Watercolours with colours from the standard Horadam assortment makes things really exciting – that’s more than 2000 new combinations, each one granulating!  


For real glow and texture, use Horadam Super Granulating Watercolours in glazes over standard colours.

The new Special Edition Horadam Super Granulating Watercolours really are special: they’re only available in select countries worldwide, and New Zealand is one of them! The range is available only in 15ml tubes, all are the highest 4-5 stars lightfastness, they are non-staining colours, and mostly semi-opaque to semi-transparent.

Watercolour artists will be super excited with this special new range of effect colours.



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