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White Nights watercolours - tips, reviews and facts: Yarka Watercolours and Their Other Trade Names

RUSART Art Supplies, a distributor of Russian high-quality art materials, is receiving a lot of questions about famous St. Petersburg watercolours, usually known in North America as Yarka. I have to say that Yarka includes watercolors of different quality and price range. Let’s start with professional ones.

First of all, Yarka is not a manufacturer’s name; it’s just a trade name. As all we know, Russian language is not the easiest one and it seems quite difficult to pronounce Russian words. Yarka is easy to say and remember. It literally means “bright” if translated from Russian.

If Yarka is not a manufacturer of watercolors we are talking about, who makes them then? The manufacturer is Nevskaya Palitra. Located in St. Petersburg, Russia, it has been making premium-quality watercolours for over 100 years. These watercolours became very popular during USSR era and they were called Leningrad (the former name of St. Petersburg city). After Leningrad was renamed, the same watercolours received a new name – St. Petersburg. After that a new brand was introduced for the same product: White Nights. So, Yarka, Leningrad, St. Petersburg, and White Nights waterclours are absolutely the same, just different box designs and target markets. Let’s stay at White Nights name as now its manufacturer is focused on promoting this trade name.White Nights professional watercolours are internationally recognized as one of the best watercolours . Made with finely grinded natural pigments, Arabic gum, and colour enhancers, White Nights colours stay rich even being dissolved in large amount of water. 

White Nights watercolors are ideal for wet techniques, as well as for multi-layering. They stay translucent even after 7-8 layers with no blending due to high pigment quality. At the same time paint can be washed out completely with synthetic brushes, if your paper allows washing techniques.

Another watercolour brand sold under Yarka name, belongs to lower budget category. It’s honey-based watercolors, manufactured by a Moscow company, Gamma. Usually they’re sold in a small plastic case. Colours go in sets only, no singles. We have the same price and quality watercolours made by Nevskaya Palitra: Tswetik waterclours, 24 colours. We suggest them for children, art students, as well as fro artsits for short sketches as paints are very light-weight and have vibrant rich colours due to good pigment load.

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