Burnt Umber Observation: Winton Vs M. Graham

edited July 17 in Studio & Supplies
EDIT: as Suez pointed out, Winton is student grade paint, so I'll be looking for an artist's burnt umber later today. How embarrassing. :|

Howdy folks, I recently bought a new tube of burnt umber made by Winton and noticed that it was much darker than the tube I have been using made by M. Graham.

Here's a comparison photo, the smaller dab on top is the M. Graham burnt umber and the larger one below it is the Winton burnt umber.

No wonder I've been having such a hard time mixing black!


  • @Suez Ah jeez you're correct, serve me right for not reading labels properly. according to the windsor and newton website the pigment is PBr7 iron oxide.

    Do you know of any readily available artist grade burnt umber paints that are darker than the M. Graham burnt umber?

  • @KingstonFineArt thanks, I'll pick some up tonight!
  • @Suez yeah the geneva burnt umber looks so dark, I'm very much looking forward to getting my hands on a set of geneva paint!
  • StephanHM - The darkness or lightness of any color is not based in the distinction between artist, student, professional, etc. 

    Every brand has its own version of the color. At the Dick Blick art supply website, you can easily look at many different brands' versions of burnt umber.  Blick will also show the color pure, and then mixed with white in two different mixes. 
  • edited July 18
    @Desertsky is correct in that different brands will have different versions of colours. Also, sometimes student paints that use cheaper pigments like, say, Burnt Umber, can be darker or have a different hue than some professional quality brands.  (see @stephanHM's photo above)

    @StephanHM mentioned that Geneva Burnt Umber (BU) is very dark. I think Geneva make their BU as dark as possible because it is from this and Ultramarine blue (UB)  that their black is made. That mix is as dark as you can get with Geneva paints. But it's plenty dark enough. So, if, for whatever reason, you are not using Geneva, and you want to make your black from BU and UB, then I think it would be sensible to get the darkest BU and UB possible. If you are able to use Geneva, you will be able to get a very dark black from their BU and UB. Or you can buy tubes of their ready-mixed black. 
  • M Graham lists their burnt Umber as : Calcined Natural Iron Oxide containing Manganese (PBr 7*) which is described as "Burnt Umber 030 is a warm, earthy brown with a slight hint of yellow."
    I think that's why it's lighter than normal PBr7 based burnt umber.

    I tried out buying some artists grade and chose Gamblin burnt umber it's nice and dark.
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