As all paints, watercolours consist of pigments, binders, colour enhancers and fillers. The most popular binder for watercolour and gouache is gum arabic. Gum arabic, also known as acacia gum, arabic gum, gum acacia, acacia, Senegal gum or Indian gum, is a natural gum consisting of the hardened sap of various species of the acacia tree. Arabic gum is is historically cultivated in Arabia and West Asia, however, nowadays 80% of harvested commercially gum go from Sudan.
Before Arabic gum was introduced into paint-making industry in 19th century, another more accessible binder was predominantly used: honey and sugar. Although most paints now have arabic gum, some manufactures still use h
oney as either enhancer or a binder, and Tswetik is our favourite brand of honey-based watercolurs.
Tswetik a children’s grade paints, however even established artists use them for their open-air sketches, because colour match, convenient plastic case in palette and non-toxicity, so you can pour used water into a river with no guilt.
Some examples of works you can find here.