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Pastel box


Watercolor set used by Claira Robbins
Windsor Newton artist colors
Indigo powder (Indigofera tinctoria)

An insoluble, dry solid that is pulverized to a fine powder then mixed with a binder to form a paint, ink or crayon.

Examples of inorganic pigments:

- earth colors (Ocher, Sienna, Umber, Green earth);

- metallic oxide (Ferric oxide, Titanium dioxide, Zinc white; Viridian);

- metallic carbonates (Lead white, Calcite, Malachite);

- metallic chromates (Lead chromate; Barium chromate;

- carbon black (Bone black, Lampblack, Graphite)

Examples of some organic pigments are:

- animal (Melanin, Cochineal, Indian yellow)

- vegetable (Madder, Indigo, Gamboge)

- synthetic (Verdigris, phthalocyanine, lakes, Para red)

Synonyms and Related Terms

pigments (pl., Fr.); pigmento (Esp., Port.);


Websites of pigment manufacturers

Resources and Citations

  • R.L. Feller, A. Roy, E. West Fizthugh, B. Berrie, Artists' pigments: A handbook of their history and characteristics (4 vol.), NGA (Washington DC) & Archetype Publications (London)