Gum Arabic Powder for DIY Watercolor Paint Making Supplies 1oz Jacquard

Kimberly Crick


This plastic jar of Gum Arabic powder contains 28g/1oz of pure dried tree sap powder from Acacia Senegal and A. Arabica. Gum Arabic is commonly used as a transparent binder for watercolor paint. It's primary function is to adhere the pigment to the paper, while still remaining workable (not waterproof). When you apply pigment powders with just water to paper, once the water dries the pigment will rub off just like sidewalk chalk. The Gum Arabic is the reason watercolor paints do not rub off on your finger once dry.

You may also add other ingredients to your watercolor paints if you choose, such as honey and glycerin for easy re-wetting, ox-gall or Golden's animal-free watercolor medium for flow, and a preservative like clove oil for it's anti-mold properties. When using only Gum Arabic and no preservatives, I recommend using purified water to avoid introducing mold and bacteria to your paints. Once mixed, the paint should be stored in an air-tight jar or poured into an empty plastic pan to dry.

This is an easy way to make your own watercolors or calligraphy ink from any finely ground powder you may have. This includes grinding up old chalk pastels, charcoal sticks, or using ready made professional pigment powders. It works really well with shimmer metallic dusts like Pearl-Ex brand typically marketed to polymer clay artists. Mica powders typically re-wet very easily from dry, even when only mixed with Gum Arabic and water. The ratio is typically 1 part Gum Arabic to 4 parts pigment powder, but can be adjusted as you see fit. Adding too much Gum Arabic may add a subtle glossy finish.