Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Prima Water Soluble Oil Pastels & Gelatos

If you recall yesterday I was talking a bit about Prima's Water Soluble Oil Pastels.   Well, last night in the middle of the night (of course) I was thinking about how they behaved and suddenly it occurred to me that I should compare them to Gelatos.  At the time when I was experimenting with them vs. the watercolor crayons and such I just couldn't figure out why they seemed familiar.  They seemed familiar because Gelatos are very similar in consistency and how they behave...or so I thought. 

So today I pulled out a couple Gelatos and the PWSOP's...

They do seem very similar but side by side the Prima's are still have a much more creamy, smooth and softer consistency.  They go on the paper (watercolor paper) easier and as you can see below blend better too.

Above wet, below dry.

I wanted to see how various other mediums looked over top of both so I used Memento Dye Ink to stamp the word love; Sharpie to write hello; drew a line across each color using a Prismacolor pencil; 123 with an alcohol marker and ABC with a pigment marker.  Both were very similar but I could tell a bit of a difference between the stamping - Prima's were a bit darker and more saturated.  When writing on the Gelato side (with most of the writing tools) that it felt like I was writing in wax, I did not get that sensation with the Prima side.

One issue I always have with Gelatos is that even after they have dried they leave a coating that can be easily rubbed off - which if it's on a one time use card is no biggie but if you're using it in a scrapbook album, art journal or planner it could become an issue very quickly.  The small piece of paper below the test colors was rubbed vigorously over both the Prima & Gelatos.  As you can see the Gelatos side easily smudged onto the scrap of paper.  I had to really work to get anything off of the Prima side.

Size Wise - Size isn't everything BUT I will tell you that you get far more medium with the Prima's than you do with the Gelatos.  Now to be honest I had never unscrewed the Gelatos all the way to see how much there actually is in the tube BUT I did today.  I used one of my new sticks that I hadn't yet used and the medium inside the tube measured 1 3/8" x 3/8"; the Primas measure 3 1/4" x 1/2".  So you're getting more than double with the Primas once you factor in length and width.

Finally the biggest difference between the Prima WSOP and Gelatos is price!  This is a very important factor (to me anyway).  I did some checking and the Prima Water Soluble Oil Pastels are priced anywhere from 13.00 - 20.00 for a package of 24 colors; the Gelatos on the other hand are approx. 7.50 - 12.00 per set of 4 colors (regular size - not the double stick).  That works out to about $45.00 and up for a set of 24. You can get a set of 36 Gelatos for around 50.00 - 60.00 if you look around.  I'm not sayin' the Gelatos isn't worth the money or anything but if you're looking for cheaper alternatives I'd say these Prima WSOP's are the way to go.  

Just FYI - both the Gelatos and Primas can be used very similarly for many techniques - they can be chopped up and mixed with various mediums (gesso, modeling paste, etc.) to create colored mediums,  they can both be colored directly onto stamps,  used as a watercolor paint directly from the tube/stick, etc.  


  1. Thanks for this informative post. Now I know I'll be buying the Prima instead of Gelatos. My pet peeve with gelatos is the smudging. Once again you are enabling me. ;-)

  2. I'm always trying to find the perfect art supplies,and never yet to find them.You sound like Me....talking to Myself....always comparing mediums. Enjoyed the info.,I do have Gelatos. Never tried the Primos , I don't think.They will be My next try.

  3. Thank you for the information. I found it very helpful. Maybe when Tim Holtz' Distress Crayons start hitting the market, you can compare those as well.

  4. Thanks so much for the reply to my questions following the first post! I should have realized there would be more info in this second installment! Patience eludes me all too often-LOL!


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