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New Korean Gouache-Hybrid Review!

Shinhan gouache swatches

I ordered some new gouache paints from an online art shop a few weeks ago, and I think I might be in love with them!

The brand is called Shinhan and is based in Korea. They usually make watercolours, but they have a “watercolour and gouache hybrid” paint called Shinhan Pass that is meant to result in really vivid colours. I chose a palette of pastel colours plus one darker green since I use green in pretty much every painting ever.

Now, bit of honest talk here, these were on sale for £1.80 online (minus the Cobalt Green, which was closer to £4 I think, but that’s still cheaper than the Winsor Newton brand) so I wasn’t confident that the quality would be very good. After swatching my colour choices though, I’m so happy with my purchase and am definitely going to be adding more to my collection!

Shinhan gouache tubes

The large, main swatches are just the paint out of the tube with water mixed in – I found you have to add a lot more water to this paint to get the right consistency. They are only one layer of paint. Seriously. In my experience bright, vivid coverage in the first layer doesn’t actually happen often. The only exception was the Hooker’s Green, which came out patchy, and would need an extra layer or two, but that’s pretty much the norm for similar colours in the Winsor Newton range too.

After testing out the colours on their own, I mixed a 50-50 tint using my usual WN Zinc White. I like to stock up on any of the big tubes of white gouache when they’re on sale, so right now I have WN and a Daler Rowney Zinc White as well. Any how, it plays just fine with other brands which is also a plus, and the tints are even better pastel colours if you want that nice soft effect they can have.

Shinhan gouache swatches with paint tubes

Have you tried these paints before? What colours did you try and what did you think of them?

If you haven’t, I highly recommend trying out this brand if you can get your hands on some! Especially if you’re just starting out with gouache and need a cheaper option. If you already have a good-sized collection I think some of the colours can make nice compliments to what you already have too.


*Disclaimer: I wasn’t paid by Shinhan to create this post, I bought these paints myself out of curiosity and thought I’d share my opinion of the brand with you :)

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Gouache Colour Swatches

Happy Wednesday!

Depending on how well we know each other you may already know this, but I hate crowded places. We left our holiday shopping until just a few days before Christmas and while it wasn’t the most awful thing in the world, I didn’t enjoy it either.

So when all the emails started rolling in advertising the holiday sales for my favourite shops, my first reaction was “Ooh!” and then “Uuuurrrghh… Nooooo…” when I remembered that meant going back into the madness that is the Boxing Week and also January Sales in the UK.

Luckily for myself and others like me who would rather be nice and cozy at home than out battling crowds, there is online shopping! So I ordered some new art supplies which arrived over the weekend – yay!

The most difficult part of the whole process was just figuring out which colours of gouache to order.

Winsor Newton gouache swatches

I know that sounds silly, but the little colour swatches on the shop page were completely different from the ones on the Winsor & Newton website, which made it that much more difficult to figure out which colours I would use the most. WN have little descriptions for some of the colours, which is sort of helpful, but after doing a search on Pinterest and Google trying to find other artists or illustrators that have used these paints, I didn’t come up with much.

Since my goal is to eventually try out every colour of the WN brand gouache, I made my decisions based on budget and the holes in my collection – I’ve been keeping track of which colours I have, which ones I use the most and which ones aren’t part of my collection yet. And I swatched these new ones, so that anyone else having the same problems can use them for reference. They still might not be 100% accurate due to the difference in monitor displays and such, but hopefully they’re helpful!

Here is the chart, with the left swatch being the colour right from the tube and the right being a roughly 50/50 mix with the same brand of Permanent White gouache:

Full size, finished swatches

As for the paints themselves, the Viridian is my favourite. It’s beautiful with some white added for a tint, but the colour on its own (with water for the right consistency) seems to be cracking even though the paint hasn’t been applied thickly. Honestly, I don’t know enough about it to know if it’s maybe due to age or the pigment is just fragile? But the lighter swatch is fine – no cracking to be found.

There are also a few colours that you need at least 3 coats to get a fairly solid result, such as the Primary Red, Ultramarine and Cerulean Blue. The tints had good coverage with just 1 layer of paint though.

I plan on making more swatches for all the other colours if anyone has any specific requests for the next chart – let me know in the comments!

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