Opaque watercolour. Also known as poster paint, designer's colour, and body colour, it differs from transparent watercolour in that the pigments are bound by liquid glue, which is used as a thinner. The addition of white pigment lightens the tone and lends opacity. Gouache paints dry to a matte finish and, if desired, without visible brush marks. They can be applied thinly or thickly. A wide range of colours are available, including fluorescent and metallic pigments. The suede finish and crisp lines characteristic of many Indian and Islamic miniature paintings is produced by this medium; it is used in Western screen and fan decoration and was used by modern artists such as Georges Rouault and Paul Klee.
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"Guazzo" was originally a term applied to the early 16th century practice of applying oil paint over a tempera base. The term was applied to the watermedia in the 18th century in France, although the technique is considerably older. It was used as early as the 14th century in Europe.
Gouache generally dries to a different value than it appears when wet (lighter tones generally dry darker, while darker tones tend to dry lighter), which can make it difficult to match colors over multiple painting sessions. This, combined with its quick coverage and total hiding power, mean that gouache lends itself to more immediate techniques than watercolor. "En plein air" paintings take advantage of this, as do works by J.M.W. Turner. It is used most consistently by commercial artists for works such as posters, illustrations, comics, and for other design work. For example, comics illustrators like Alex Ross use mostly gouache for their work. Industrial Designer and Visual Futurist Syd Mead also works primarily in gouache. Most 20th Century animations used it to create an opaque color on a cel with watercolor paint used for backgrounds, and gouache as "poster paint" is desirable for its speed and durability.
As with all types of paint, gouache has been used on some unusual papers or surfaces.
Art deco focus on paper pieces ; Highlights of the sale include hand-painted gouache on paper by Erte and works by Rene Ranson and Louis Icart
Apr 05, 2002; An art deco auction next week boasts the strongest Works on Paper section to come on the market for more than 10 years. Some 40...