Tutorial - Wet Palette

by Roman aka jar

Aloa jungle,

as i told you about getting some articles up here i for sure want to talk about the basics of my way of working with colors and how i use them. While painting i mix my colors up on a so called Wet Pallete - Wet Pallete? Why? Huh? What? Ok here we go...

What's it all about?

I guess everyone knows mixing some colors up on a CD for example. You take it on the CD, paint about 10 Minutes and your colours went dry - so you got to mix it up again, again and again and the amount of unused color dried rises in horrible heights.

One of the main reasons, because i work with a Wet Palette is that this doesn't happen and i can use my colors for days. Step by Step - let me explain.

How to build my own Wet Palette?

What you need:

- a box, container, or some kind of plate (with or without cover, more about this later on)
- tissues
- Baking paper / quote by Ater:
"Parchment paper which is used for cooking is a greaseproof paper. It is a sheet of paper impregnated with silicone, making the paper moisture resistant. You can buy it in Grocery stores."
- Water
- that's all... :)

Put some tissues in the box, should be at least half of a finger thick in its height. Bring some water in there and make the tissues really swimming in water:

Now get some Baking Paper, but make sure it is one without oily coating - it won't work with that or at least your colours mixed upon will change dramaticly in their properties. Not good, i repeat, not good. Now put the Baking Paper on your tissues. Smooth down the Paper with your fingers, it helps to make your fingers wet before. Perfect would be having not too much water in your wet palette and not to less. The perfect amount is when you can easily move the paper over the tissues without having it blocking while moving.

Now you can mix up your colours in there and the very good about it is: Your colours won't dry fast, because the baking paper regains water from the undergrounded tissues for a long time.

The baking paper keeps your colours wet (really great while working with glazes). If you want to hold on to it a little longer than one painting session it would be a good idea to use one with cover to close it and save your colors to the next day. BUT take care, at least after one week you should change it and make it fresh, before it stinks and walks away from itself telling you the name of the dark god of Pestilence, haha.

I quickly learned to not use a metal box. It is awful when it starts to rust, because of all the water. Lesson learned. Stupid lesson. So plastic ones, kind of tupperware.

On this picture above you can see one box out of metal. I changed this to some Tupperware lately because the metal started to rust after about a year or so. Learning and gaining experience from the active doing is all what our beloved hobby is about. Also you can see that i am using the cover for a lot of things. Short color tests, Tips of glue and way more things i don't want to speak about in public.

Here is my actual Wet Palette - to clean it i just put it in the Dishwasher - sure it is not getting total clean, but who cares - things being worked with have the right to look like this.

Take good care of keeping your wetpalette clean and fresh once in a while. It can be unhealthy and cause stomach problems if you are a brush licker.

The opened Pit of colours:

I learned that it is great to have one that is not too large in height on its side. It always feels stupid and annoying to "dig" for your paints.

Two days ago i had a visitor, brought in from the balcony i guess - nothing important here but he seemed to like my version of a wet palette - maybe you will do to :)

It is amazing how often wet palettes change, when looking back in my painting career. Wet palette 2.0 brought massive change in my way of working with the wet palette. Right now mine looks like this, by Mastersons:

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Keep on happy painting!



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