I have been using their 37ml tubes for many years to make up my students' palettes. Don't get me wrong - they are not student colours. My student palettes are made up entirely of artist quality colours, but I use a mix of Daniel Smith and Da Vinci to make them up. The 37ml DV tubes are so economical that I can price my palettes at a very reasonable rate and get my students started with artist quality watercolours. They are probably some of the most consistent watercolours available - thick and strong out of the tube, and they rewet well. They are now available in Sydney, Australia from Pigment Lab in Newtown, who will also do mail order.
June 2018 update: I have now tried their full current range of 104 colours, and will eventually add the last one - Lapis Lazuli - if it becomes available again. These swatches are all gradually being added to my website here.
As always, I've tried to colour match, but will mention it when the colour I see on my screen and the colour of the swatches is way out...
First are the cool yellows. Nickel titanate is usually a very weak pigment - this is one of the best example of this opaque and granulating yellow I've tried. Hansa Yellow Light is the coolest of these and a very clean yellow. I don't recommend PY40 as it will fade in washes and can discolour in mass-tone.
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Nickel titanate yellow, Cadmium Yellow Lemon, Hansa Yellow Light, Da Vinci Yellow, Aureolin Mixture.|
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Arylide Yellow, Cadmium Yellow Light, Hansa Yellow Medium, Cadmium Yellow Medium, Gamboge Hue.|
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Hansa Yellow Deep, Cadmium Yellow Deep, Arylide Yellow Deep, Indian Yellow, |
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Cadmium Orange, Da Vinci Orange, Benzimida Orange Deep, Vermilion Hue, Bright Red.|
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Cadmium Scarlet, Cadmium Red Light, Permanent Red, Cadmium Red Deep, Da Vinci Red.|
Naphthol Red is described as 'mid tone' and it really does seem a perfect mid red. The tube I have of this was more runny than any others and took a long time to dry. Quinacridone Red is a coral colour - like the DS Quin Coral. The Alizarin Gold is more dull than it looks here, and the Alizarin Crimson (Quin) is more crimson - I think it's the closest I've seen to the genuine but fugitive Alizarin Crimson PR83 pigment.
|Da Vinci Watercolours - rose Dore (Quinacridone), Naphthol Red, Quinacridone Red, Alizarin Gold, Alizarin Crimson (Quinacridone).|
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Carmine (Quinacridone), Perylene Maroon, Rose Red Deep (Quinacridone), Permanent Rose(quinacridone), Rose Madder (Quinacridone)|
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Opus (Vivid Pink), Quinacridone Fuchsia, Thioindigo Violet, Cobalt Violet.|
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Cobalt Violet Deep, Lilac Permanent, Manganese Violet, Mauve, Ultramarine Violet.|
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Da Vinci Violet, Lavender Permanent, Indanthrone Blue, Cobalt Blue Deep, Cobalt Blue.|
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Phthalo Blue (Red Shade), Lapis Lazuli Genuine (not shown - not currently available), Prussian Blue, Prussian Blue Green Shade), Phthalo Blue.|
|Da Vinci Watercolours - French Ultramarine, Ultramarine Blue, Ultramarine Blue (Green Shade) (not shown), Cerulean Blue Genuine, Cerulean Blue (Hue)|
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Manganese Blue (Permanent), Phthalo Turquoise, Cobalt Turquoise, Cobalt Turquoise Deep, |
Cobalt Green Hue.
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Phthalo Green, Viridian Green, Phthalo Green (Yellow Shade), Hooker's Green, Perylene Green.|
Chromium Oxide Green is one of the most opaque pigments in watercolour, and it's a pigment I haven't explored much. The others here are convenience mixes, which can be useful if you find you tend to mix these hues a lot yourself.
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Emerald Permanent (not shown), Chromium Oxide Green, Hooker's Green Light, Sap Green, |
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Green Gold, Leaf Green, Nickel Azo Yellow, Naples Yellow, Naples Yellow Deep.|
Some lovely yellow earth options. I'd tend towards the single pigment colours every time.
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Yellow Ochre, Raw Sienna, Gold Ochre, Quinacridone Gold, Raw Sienna Deep.|
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Raw Umber Natural, Quinacridone Burnt Orange, Burnt Sienna, Burnt Sienna Deep, |
Terra Cotta (Light Red).
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Venetian Red, Indian Red Deep, Indian Red, Brown Madder (Quinacridone), Violet Iron Oxide.|
Burnt Umber and Raw Umber are colours I like to include in most palettes as it gives a deep warm and cool brown. I am not fond of black pigments in watercolour so I like the Indigo made with PB27+PV19 rather than the usual phthalo blue, indanthrone blue or ultramarine mixed with black.
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Burnt Umber, Raw Umber, Sepia, Indigo, Payne's Gray.|
|Da Vinci Watercolours - Ivory Black, Lamp Black, Davy's Gray, Chinese White, Titanium White.|
As always, let me know if you notice any mistakes. Many thanks to those who have sent samples to help complete these posts, including Da Vinci paints in California and Pigment Lab in Newtown, Sydney. :-)