• Alicia Kidd

About Gouache

I have been using gouache since art school, about 19 years. Before then I painted with acrylics and quickly became a big fam of watery washes and rehydrating paints. At the time, I was not interested in watercolor because I had no idea what a wonderful medium it could be. In my head, watercolors came in round plastic pans and were cheap and horrible to paint with. Maybe I thought all watercolors were comparable to Crayola children's watercolor set.



Gouache is an opaque paint medium. Traditional gouache can be re-wet and re-worked over and over again. The final painting can be reworked as well. Unlike most paint mediums, gouache dries completely matte.


Gouache dries quickly. Very quickly.


There is also a thing called acrygouache which is just a fancy acrylic paint that dries matte. Not gouache in any way.




Gouache painting on my Sketchbook

Getting to know guache again. I forgot how fun it is to paint with thick pasty paint.


Corvis Moose painted in Gouache

On the left, gouache and on the right watercolors.




Reconstituting gouache is easy. Spray with water and wait one minute or swirl a wet brush until you have a paste again. I always prefer using wet paint directly from the tube but refreshing dry gouache works perfectly fine, especially for layering.



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