4 - Red Watercolour Swatches
There are literally hundreds of artist quality watercolours available from many brands. I have tested many of them and created swatches as seen on the right. The square box is painted into a damp wash at the top to show the colour mixed in water, with more pigment added towards the bottom. The rectangle is painted in a juicy wash to show the mass-tone. The small squares at the bottom of the swatch have the pigment number and characteristics - staining, lightfast rating, granulation and transparency.
Single Pigment Red Watercolours
Many of the Red watercolours will have be denoted as PR for Pigment Red, then a number. You will also notice many made with PV19 (Pigment Violet 19) which is a lovely pigment that covers a range of paints from a rose pink through reds, crimsons and violets. Avoid any watercolours with PR83 - this is a fugitive Alizarin Crimson pigment that will fade in sunlight so should not be used. See also the earthy red-brown and orange brown watercolours made with PR101 and other red earth pigments in the 'Earths' tab. Magentas made with red pigments are also included here.
Cadmium Reds made with PR108 and PO20
You'll see that most cadmium reds are made with PR108, which has a more scarlet, a mid red and a more maroon red version. The sample of the Blockx 'Cadmium Purple' captures the more maroon colour of the cadmium deep colours best. Reds and oranges are difficult to colour match.
Reds made with PR251, PR254 & PR255 - warm to mid reds
Reds made with PR 170, PR 175, PR177, PR 178, PR179 and PR264 - crimson and deep reds
Quinacridone Rose, Reds and Crimsons made with PV19
PV19 comes in a 'rose' version and a 'violet' version. I'd love it if the main two colours were called PV19R and PV19V, but they are not. It is also to be seen in crimson versions, such as the Alizarin Crimson Quinacridone and Carmine by Da Vinci - the first swatches shown. The violet versions are shown in the purple section.
Reds (and red browns) made with PR206
The rather lovely Permanent alizarin crimson by W&N is a real surprise from this normally burnt scarlet pigment.
Reds made with PR207
Reds made with PR209
I have not been able to match the colour for this pigment - it makes a lovely true coral colour, but these all look too pink.
Quinacridone Magenta and Magenta reds made with PR122 and PR202
These tow pigments make similar magenta colours, but the PR122 will be a cleaner colour for mixing oranges as well as purples.
Pinks made with PR233
This gently granulating dusty pink pigment is known as Potter's Pink or Pink Colour.
More single pigment reds, arrange by pigment numbers PO then PR then PV
Mixed Pigment Reds
May be made from more than one red pigment, but all mixes of some sort.
These swatches are painted and added as a guide. The intention is show the characteristics of each colour when painted. The colour reproduction is not perfect but hopefully will still be helpful used in conjunction with the manufacturer's website. Thank you to those of you, from Canada, Sweden, Australia and the USA, who have helped me with this section by sharing your favourite colours. If you notice errors please let me know so I can correct them. If you have artist quality watercolour that are not shown here and want to help me build up this resource, also please let me know :-)