Watercolor (American English) or watercolour, also aquarelle (French, from Italian diminutive of Latin aqua “water”),is a painting method in which the paints are made of pigments suspended in a water-based solution. Watercolor refers to both the medium and the resulting artwork. Aquarelles painted with water-soluble colored ink instead of modern watercolors are called “aquarellum atramento” (Latin for “aquarelle made with ink”)
The traditional and most common support—material to which the paint is applied—for watercolor paintings is watercolor paper. Other supports include papyrus, bark papers, plastics, vellum, leather, fabric, wood and watercolor canvas (coated with a gesso that is specially formulated for use with watercolors). Watercolor paper is often made entirely or partially with cotton. This gives the surface the appropriate texture and minimizes distortion when wet. Watercolor papers are usually cold pressed papers, and gives a better texture and look with GSM between 200 to 300. Watercolors are usually translucent and appear luminous because the pigments are laid down in a pure form with few fillers obscuring the pigment colors. Watercolors can also be made opaque by adding Chinese white.
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