French Ultramarine, bright blue with a slight violet tone. Pigment number PB29, single pigment half-pan watercolor. Fits in all palettes designed for half-pans.
My name is French Ultramarine. I am one of the first human-made pigments (although the Maya tribe made their own pigments centuries before). The reason why I was born was the price of my father and grandfather Lapis Lazuli – ground stone. First I was discovered in the late 18th Century by Goethe who observed the blue deposits on the walls of lime kilns that were used in decoration, but he didn’t make a fuss about it. Early in the 19th century, the French Society of Industrial development announced a prize for inventing a substitute for expensive stone Ultramarine. So, I was made by heating, in a closed-fire clay furnace, as a finely ground mixture of China clay, soda ash, coal or wood, charcoal, silica, and sulfur. I was maintained at red heat for one hour, then allowed to cool, then washed to remove excess sodium sulfate, dried, and ground. And the dispute of me as a natural or non-natural pigment is ever going. If you take raw natural ingredients and make a delicious dinner – would you say it is not natural? Just because you as a human being have cooked and mixed them? I am confusing your minds, dear conscious humans.
One of the oldest human-made pigments. Mixes nicely with other natural and human-made pigments. For best performance add a few drops of water some minutes before starting to work with it. It will reactivate the pigment and will be more fluid.
French Ultramarine along with Burnt Sienna is one of the most favorite limited palette choices by traveling artists. We have bundled them in Urbansketchers Classics set.
All our watercolors are handmade from pigment or pigment mixes, binders, and essential oils as conservative. Binder is made by ourselves from gum arabic, natural honey, and water. Our watercolors have a flowery scent, with lemongrass as top note and sandalwood in the base note.