Sunday 18 June 2017

Lukas watercolours

Lukas it a German company founded in 1862. They make watercolours in half and large 24ml tubes in their Aquarelle 1862 artist range. They also make studio gouache and various watercolour mediums. I have only tried a little over half of this range, but I've decided to post them up as they paint our very nicely. They are available from Jacksonsart (affiliate link) and Jerry's in the US. The colour chart can be found here and shows 70 colours. They no longer include the lovely Manganese blue shown below.

Lukas Watercolours - Chinese White (not shown), Opaque White (not shown), Lemon Yellow (Primary), 
Aureolin Hue, Cadmium Yellow Lemon. 

Lukas Watercolours - Cadmium Yellow Light (not shown), Permanent Yellow Light, Gamboge, 
Indian Yellow (not shown), Naples Yellow (not shown). 

Lukas Watercolours - Yellow Ochre Light, Permanent Yellow Deep, Cadmium Orange (not shown), 
Permanent Orange (not shown), Cadmium Red Light. 

I like PR255 as a warm red so would be interesting in trying the Cinnabar Red. Lukas Red and Madder Lake Deep are made from another favourite crimson pigment - PR264.

Lukas Watercolours - Cinnabar Red (not shown), Permanent Red, Cadmium Red Deep, Lukas Red (not shown), 
Madder Lake Deep (not shown). 

It is a shame they use PR176 in many of their hues - it drops the lightfast rating in every colour it is added to.

Lukas Watercolours - Carmine Red (not shown), Alizarin Crimson (not shown), Genuine Rose, 
Magenta (Primary), Ruby Red (not shown). 

I am guessing that Purple would look like Quinacridone Violet in many ranges. Dioxazine Violet is very similar across brands - a powerful mid purple.

Lukas Watercolours - Purple (not shown), Dioxazine Violet (not shown), Cobalt Violet, Indanthrone Blue, Ultramarine Blue. 

Lukas Watercolours - Ultrmarine Blue lIght, Cobalt Blue, Paris Blue (not shown), 
Prussian Blue (not shown), Cerulean Blue. 

Lukas Watercolours - Phthalo Blue, Permanent Blue, Cyan (Primary), Prussian Green (not shown), 
Manganese Blue (discontinued). 

Lukas Watercolours - Turquoise, Cobalt Turquoise, Indigo, Green Yellow, May Green (not shown). 

Lukas Watercolours - Cinnabar Green Light (not shown), Sap Green, Permanent Green Yellowish (not shown), 
Permanent Green, Cobalt Green (not shown). 

Lukas Watercolours - Phthalo Green, Viridian (not shown), Verona Green Earth, 
Oxide of Chromium, Olive Green. 

Lukas Watercolours - Raw Sienna, Gold Ochre (not shown), Naples Yellow Reddish, 
Burnt Sienna, English Red Light. 

Lukas Watercolours - English Red Deep (not shown), Caput Mortuum Deep (not shown), 
Burnt Green Earth, Burnt Umber (not shown), Van Dyck Brown (not shown). 

Lukas Watercolours - Raw Umber, Sepia (not shown), Ivory Black (not shown), Payne's Grey (not shown), 
Neutral Tint (not shown), Gold (not shown).

There are many more to add of course, which I will do as I come across them. I have read that Lukas is a very affordable watercolour range available in Germany, from Jacksonsart in the UK and from Jerry's in the US. Happy painting!


  1. Thank you for this post (and all your hard work and swatches)!
    I want to add more artists' quality paints to my palette (so far W&N Winsor Yellow, Permanent Rose, Winsor Blue GS, Mijello Ultramarine Light, "Viridian") and definitely need a few earth colours. Do you think the Lukas Burnt Sienna and Raw Sienna (or Yellow Ochre Light) are good additions? (Especially the Burnt Sienna, because you seem so keen on a PBr7 version that mixes well with Ultramarine, and Lukas would be the most affordable choice in Germany).
    BTW, the Jerry's Artarama chart seems to be the English version of the chart found on Lukas' German homepage:

    Have a nice week!

    1. Thank you for the link the the German website :-)
      I think the Burnt Sienna is a very nice version. Yellow ochre (made with a PY pigment) will usually mix more greenish greens than raw sienna (made with a PBr pigment) and it's a nice yellow ochre light. The Raw sienna would mix more greyish greens. English Red light (or deep though I haven't tried it) may also be a useful addition if you want an earth red. And if you are painting skies I'd add the Cerulean.

    2. Thanks a lot!

      I think I'll settle for the Burnt and Raw Sienna for now. I have an English Red from White Nights, so no need there :)

  2. I noticed that the Gamboge is PY153. Does it have the same hue as the discontinued Daniel Smith New Gamboge with PY153? Thanks for all your posts, they are beyond helpful!

  3. I noticed on your website that you may be in Southern California Sept/Oct of this year. "September/October 2017- Travelling and sketching in San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle and perhaps Portland (Oregon) are being planned. Suggestions welcome :-)"

    Have you finalized any plans? Will you be anywhere near San Diego? That's where I am. If you're doing any workshops anywhere from San Juan Capistrano on south that don't require membership in a society, I'd love to sign up for one.

    If you want a suggestion, should you be in the area: tea at The Tea House on Los Rios in San Juan Capistrano and then strolling around the historic area and doing some journaling. I was just there on Tuesday and it was lovely.

  4. Hi, I'm curious to add some Lukas paints for my sketching palette as they are very affordable. do they set well enough in a pan for a travel palette which will be chucked in my bag, potentially a 'pocket palette' by Art toolkit.

    1. I've only tried them from dots but those were fine - held up on the watercolour paper. so as far as I know, well worth a try. The pigment information is good and they painted out nicely. Just watch those dark browns though, made with many pigments.

  5. Steff, it's probably too late to be of help to you, but I have a basic 12-tube set of the Lukas colors. I keep them in an "airtight" palette so if I have a large quantity in there, they stay very moist, but where there's a small amount, they dry out and would be completely hard in a day or two.

  6. Hi Jane,

    Thanks for doing these swatches.

    Can you tell if Burnt Sienna is granulating at all? I am looking for a non granulating Pbr7 Burnt Sienna. The local art store only sells Lukas and Schmincke, Schmincke uses PR101 for a transparent burnt sienna and the version with Pbr7 is granulating, which I would prefer not to use.

    Thank you

    1. Burnt Sienna is normally a bit granulating if it is made with PBr7. PR101 is frequently used if you don't want granulation.

  7. any interesting mixes that can be done with verona green earth? I bought the 24 mL tube by accident and now am unsure what to do with it.

    1. It is an interesting granulating green. Explore it with a triad of earth colours or see how it mixes with your yellows. Single pigment greens can be really interesting in mixes.

  8. What are your personal views of the Lukas paints as a whole? Are the CERULEAN, MAGENTA, and YELLOW paints worth a purchase if I have other professional paints from W&N, DS, Schminke, Sennelier, QOR, etc. in my collection? Thank you, Linda

  9. I was very impressed with them as a whole. If they are readily available to you, certainly add them to your collection. However if you already have those pigments in another brand I wouldn't suggest getting them again.