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Digital Subscriptions > The Artist > September 19 > Winsor & Newton Cadmium-Free Professional Water Colours

Winsor & Newton Cadmium-Free Professional Water Colours

Julie Collins reports on Winsor & Newton’s innovative new environmentally friendly cadmium-free watercolours, concluding that they’re a pleasure to paint with

Over recent years there has been a lot of discussion about the environmental safety of cadmium pigments. With this in mind, Winsor & Newton have developed cadmium-free pigments and introduced their exciting cadmium-free range of watercolours.

Cadmium pigments have been used by artists for many years; when I was an art student ‘the cadmiums’ were important pigments and were among the first colours that we had to buy. Cadmium pigments are brilliantly coloured, have good permanence and excellent lightfastness. The main pigments form a family of yellow, orange and red.

Cadmium safety

Cadmium pigments have cadmium as one of their chemical components and at this point I think it is useful to discuss the safety issue of traditional cadmium watercolours.

During the paint-making process the cadmium pigment is fused with sulphides and coated in the watercolour binder, a process that renders the cadmium insoluble in water, and therefore the human body. We can’t absorb it and cadmium paints don’t give off any dust or fumes. The paint-making process makes cadmium paints safe.

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About The Artist

Welcome to our September issue, packed with inspiration, demonstrations and practical advice for all artists, covering all your favourite media. Our artist-contributors show you how to paint sunlight and shadows in watercolour, capture the effects of sparkling light on water in acrylics, create a balanced composition, while Amanda Hyatt shares her top ten tips for painting rivers and lakes in watercolour. There are also demonstrations on how to paint buildings, capture the texture of fur when painting animals, how to create a simple but dramatic linocut and showing why oils are great for developing still-life compositions in the studio. Seasoned exhibitor Nicholas Poullis offers advice on how to give yourself the best chance of selling your work, Steve Hall urges you to step out of your comfort zone and try a new medium and Haidee-Jo Summers encourages you to take up the #DrawingAugust challenge. Share your sketches with us, too, to win a prize and see your work published in The Artist. There's plenty more too, including the latest news, views, competitions to enter and our test report on the new Winsor & Newton Cadmium-Free watercolours.