QOR Watercolors vs. DaVinci, M. Graham and Winsor Newton Watercolors

QOR vs. DaVinci

First off I just want to say that I love Golden paints, their acrylic is by far my favorite.  I was so excited when I heard that they were getting into watercolor as well. I didn’t rush out and buy them only for the fact that I have so much watercolor paint, I buy large tubes because of the batiks. I recently got some QOR (the name of the golden watercolor) paints when my husband brought them back for me when he was away on a trip.  Just to read their brochure convinced me that I now had a watercolor that was different from all the others ? Here is what their brochure that comes in the package says:

“QOR Modern Watercolors – Deep, Rich, Beautiful color. QOR’s exclusive binder gives color greater intensity and clarity while retaining the best qualities of traditional watercolors. QOR offers a strength range and versatility unmatched in the history of watercolor.” 

Now we’re cooking with butter lol. I did a quick painting of my cat Charlie just to test them out. The QOR have a lovely feel to them and they cover nicely, so I decided to do some comparisons with some of my DaVinci watercolors.

I was very surprised at the comparisons. The two paints were so similar it was hard to tell the difference.  There were a couple of slight differences:

  • the QOR Alizarin was a tad brighter after it dried
  • I found the DaVinci Hansa had a bit more vibrancy but again nothing that was plain to see.

The chart above shows the colors next to each other and their transparency. The colors that are less transparent leave a hazy film over the black line. After the black line, you will see a line where I attempted to lift the dried paint with a synthetic paint brush. They were all pretty close when it came to lifting the paint off of the paper. Here is what I noticed:

  • QOR Burnt Sienna and Ultramarine blue are not as transparent as the DaVinci (Qor are rated semi-transparent and DaVinci are rated Transparent so that makes sense).
  • I like the undertone of the QOR Alizarin better
  • I absolutely love the QOR Pyrolle red
  • I prefer the jewel-like depth of the M.Graham Phthalo Blue

Note: I tested the Pyrolle red against DaVinci Red because I was out of Winsor Red which would have been a closer equivalent. Also, the Phthalo blue tested against the QOR was made by M. Graham I have yet to find a brand I like better for the Phthalos.

If you compare the 3 different Burnt Sienna paints above, the QOR and DaVinci are very close. The Winsor Newton is my all time favorite Burnt Sienna, I love the orange tone. Although it has the same name, it is actually made from a different pigment than the other two.

There are many properties of color that you need to understand. Getting a handle on these will help you save time and money. You can learn more about color by downloading my free guide  –  “5 Things You Need To Know Before Buying Watercolor” 

Thank you for sharing your time with me. I hope you have enjoyed your time here.

Cheers, Krista

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4 thoughts on “QOR Watercolors vs. DaVinci, M. Graham and Winsor Newton Watercolors”

  1. Do these QOR water colours mix properly with those that have a gum arabic binder?

    1. Hi Jean, Great question, yes according to a Golden Just Paint publication, QOR watercolor binder Aquazol easily blends with other traditional
      gum arabic watercolor brands and their mediums. Thanks for stopping in 🙂 Have a great night!

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