Jeremiah, the Pigment Piggy

I love paint pigments.  The pigment is the part of the paint that gives paint the colour.  My website and blog will include a lot about pigments in the future. Most recently for Christmas I got two new paint pigments that I love.  Both of them are from Sennelier and were obtained at

The first is a blue called Ultramarine Deep.  It bears the Sennelier designation of #315.  The plastic bottle contains 3 ounces of Sodium Silico Aluminate, also known as PB29.  Sennelier sells three different shades ultramarine.  The first is what Sennelier calls Ultramarine Blue Light (#312 from a PB29) and it is the coolest shade (contains the most green).  Their Ultramarine Violet (#916 from PV15) is the warmest (contains the most red).  This one (also a PB29) is somewhere in between, but trends warm.  It is transparent and looks great in both oil and watercolor and has excellent lightfastness (won’t fade in sunlight very quickly).

The second pigment I got for Christmas is Helios Red.  Sennelier lists this as #619.  Helios red is made from the PR3 pigment and is also known as Toluidine Red.  Helios Red not very lightfast, but it is transparent.  The shade is a warm red (contains some yellow so that it trends orange) and comes in a 1.4 ounce plastic container.  It’s a good replacement for Vermilion in paint and in chop paste used by Chinese calligraphers.  It looked fine in both the oil and watercolor paint I made.

I like both of these pigments a lot and had no trouble mixing them into paints.  They work well together to make some nice violets in the warm range.  The pigment piggy gives two oinks to these colours!  Oink, oink!


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