Sunday, June 15, 2008

*Not* Altoids Mint Tin Pocket Palette - for Watercolor or Gouache

Update to this post: After using this for a while the paint cracked and I just put new paint in straight out of the tube and let it dry --- sometimes simple is best.

It has been a long time since I posted anything . . . I had no idea. Life is going by so fast and that is just another good reason to record some of it by sketching. My son wanted to go by a garage sale last weekend to pick up some origami paper a friend told him about. The nice boy, who just graduated from college, was selling a mostly unused set of gouache paints for $5.00. I picked them up and decided it was time to make the mint tin pocket palette.

Here's mine:
I used the screw caps from cartons of milk and stuck them in to the tin with craft glue dots I use for scrapbooking. I read that others are using pop bottle caps and sticking them in with sticky-tack or poster putty. This is not an Altoids tin but it is the same size.

I painted the inside of the lid with appliance touch-up enamel and let that dry overnight. After the caps were secure in the tin, I put one drop of clove oil in each cap to retard mold in the paints. I read about that online somewhere and I had some so . . . in it went.

Then I put in one drop of honey to help keep them semi-moist. I heated the honey a little to get a smaller drop and make it mix more easily. Then added enough filtered water to cover the bottom of the cap before I squeezed the paint in. I stirred it until smooth with a toothpick. Actually I put the paint in first with the yellow. I learned that it works a lot better to put water in the bottom of the cap and then the paint. The ones I did that way didn't get air bubbles and they mixed to a smooth consistancy with a lot less effort.

I haven't painted the top black but will soon. I always wanted that bijou box but couldn't see spending the money. I liked this black tin because it made me think of the neat little box I saw and didn't buy. I really had fun making this and will make others. This one is gouache. I will probably want one with an old master's palette to play with and use for value studies. I already have a piece of red acetate for viewing values to fold up and put in that kit. I have a mini-mini I want to make up too. I'll post pictures as I finish the others.