Discover the Beautiful World of Japanese Watercolor Paints: A Beginner's Guide to Kuretake Gansai Tambi

Looking for beginner-friendly watercolour paints that deliver bright, pigmented colours with easily variable finishes? Look no further than Kuretake Gansai Tambi watercolour paints! Our stationery shop in Belfast has been lovingly testing them out, and we're excited to share our thoughts with you.

Gansai Tambai Watercolour Test

How to Use Kuretake Watercolors:

Kuretake watercolour paints come in pans, which are activated by water. To use them, simply wet your paintbrush and gently swirl it into the paint pan.

Each colour is in its own individual pan which can be lifted out of the box. The pans are about twice the size of traditional European watercolour pans, measuring approx 46mm x 28mm, which allows you to use a larger brush with them, especially useful for applying washes to large areas.

Want to mix colours? We recommend using a separate palette or plate so you don't permanently change the colours in your Kuretake palette. By varying the amount of water you use, you can change the opacity of the paint. Lots of water will make the colour lighter, while less water will provide vivid colour.

Gansai Tambai Colour swatch
Gansai Tambai Colour Swatch
Gansai Tambai Colour Swatch
Colour swatches of the traditional Gansai Tambai paints

Why We Love Kuretake Watercolours:

These watercolours are perfect for beginners and intermediate painters alike. The wide pans make them great for big brushes, and the colours are overall very pigmented and bright.

kuretake gansai tambai watercolour test

Above image: An example of the Gansai Tambai watercolours by our talented team member Sasha.

When used with a small amount of water, they have an almost gouache-like consistency and dry with a semi-opaque finish. With a generous amount of water, they offer a beautiful translucent quality that's hallmark of watercolour paints, while still retaining their brightness.

Are Kuretake watercolours lightfast?

These watercolour paints are generally found to be not very lightfast, which means that the colours of your painting will fade over time if left in sunlight for a long time. This makes them unsuitable for making works of art to sell or display in sunny areas of your home. However, they are perfect for using in your sketchbook or painting works of art that will be scanned and reproduced. They are also great for crafting and card making projects.

What are the different options?

We currently stock two different sets of Gansai Tambai paints; the original set which contains more of the primary colours and the Nuance set which contains more muted pastel colours to emulate the colours of the seasons.

Gansai Tambai Nuance Watercolour Set

The Nuance Set                           

Gansai Tambai Watercolour Set

     The Traditional Set
Have more questions? Drop us an email or visit our East Belfast store to try Kuretake Gansai Tambi watercolour paints for yourself.

You can view our current range of Gansai Tambai Paints here

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