Why high pigment loads matter

Why high pigment loads matter

When asked what makes Gapka paints so special we often mention our high pigment loads. We thought we would take some time to explain exactly what this means and why pigment load matters to the artist.

What is pigment load in oil paints?

Pigment load refers to the amount of pigment used in the paint per unit of volume. Sometimes it is referred to as the pigment volume concentration. Simply put, it is the total amount of pigment in a tube of paint compared to the amount of oil. In artists' quality oil paints, the pigment load is typically much higher than in student or hobby-level paints. This means that artists' quality paints contain more pigment per volume, resulting in a more intense and vibrant color. Gapka paints are artists’ quality and therefore contain the highest pigment loads possible for each unique pigment.

Do all the paint colors have the same pigment loads?

No. The chemical composition of each pigment determines the proper ratio of oil to pigment in order to create a thick, buttery paint that is easily spreadable. Each pigment has its own oil absorption rate that determines how much oil is needed to fully coat the pigment particles and all the spaces in between evenly. For example our Hansa Yellow Light is approximately 60% pigment while our Phthalo Blue RS is about 40% pigment.

Why does pigment load matter in artists' quality oil paints?

The higher pigment load in artists' quality oil paints results in several benefits for the artist. Firstly, higher pigment concentration means that the paint is more lightfast, meaning that it will resist fading over time. This is especially important for artists who want their paintings to last for generations. Secondly, higher pigment loads result in better tinting strength, meaning that the paint will cover better and more evenly with fewer coats. This makes the painting process faster and more efficient, as well as reducing the amount of paint needed to achieve the desired effect. Another benefit of higher pigment load is that it enhances the overall depth and luminosity of the painting. This is because the higher concentration of pigment creates a more intense and saturated color that can interact with light in a more dynamic way. As a result, the final painting will have a more vivid, luminous, and saturated appearance. Finally, purchasing paint with high pigment loads is more economical in the long run as you will need to use less paint in order to achieve the desired effect.

How does pigment load affect the final result of your painting?

The final result of a painting is affected by several factors, including the quality and type of pigment used, the thickness of the paint, and the surface it is applied to. However, pigment load is one of the most significant factors in determining the final outcome of a painting. A higher pigment load in the paint will result in a more intense and saturated color, which can create a more dynamic and striking painting. On the other hand, if the pigment load is too low, the paint may look dull and lack vibrancy. Higher pigment loads result in more intense and vibrant colors, better tinting strength, and enhanced depth and luminosity. 

Of course, the quality of the pigment also matters as well and we will be discussing pigment quality in our next post.

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