Back in the day – before Sheer Heaven became better known for making inkjet transfers than anything else – back in the Summer of 2004 in fact, I discovered that Sheer Heaven made a perfect watercolor palette for traveling.
I was not an art journaler yet. That would not come along until two years later. I was still in a state that many of you will be familiar with – collector of blank journals and frustrated to still be an artist journal wannabe.
I published an online magazine then and wrote an article about this amazing discovery.
Several folks have asked me recently to republish this information, so I dug up the photos and here we go . . .
Two things about Sheer Heaven make this idea work. Sheer Heaven is impervious to moisture, and it has a lot of tooth.
Therefore, you can pile up a deposit of watersoluble pigment on the good side of Sheer Heaven – using either watercolor pencils, or watercolor crayons, which deposit more pigment more quickly – and take your entire color collection with you inside your journal!
To use the palette, you just moisten the patch of color with your waterbrush to pick up the paint. Sheer Heaven will act just like a paint pan. It will not warp or tear with the moisture, will not soak up the color like paper would, and the Sheer Heaven tooth won’t allow the wet color to spread or run on the palette.
You can even put away your palette sheets wet. The back side of Sheer Heaven is absolutely smooth, so any wet color that offsets on the back of the sheet above will wipe right off with a damp paper towel.
You can create specific Palettes on separate sheets . . .
Maybe you have a certain set of colors you use for landscapes or people, or a coffee toned palette you use in coffee shops. Maybe you want to group all your reds, or blues, on one sheet. The beauty of this system is that you can use as many small sheets as you want, arrange colors however you want, and repeat colors on different sheets.
The palettes work perfectly for most color sketching you want to do.
You can refill the color spots . . .
When your color runs out, the tooth of the Sheer Heaven will still be there, so you just scribble on more color.
You can dilute and mix colors easily . . .
The smooth back side of each sheet is perfect for diluting or mixing your colors to your heart’s content. You could even carry an extra sheet (recycle a transfer leftover) just to use as a mixing palette.
Best of all, you can carry as many sheets as you want in a simple envelope in your journal – or they can be tucked in a pocket if your journal has one.
I made this envelope from Sheer Heaven (using an envelope template I found online) and painted the palette on front using the color from the sheets inside!
If you don’t have any Sheer Heaven, here is where you can find it:
NOTE: Transfer leftovers can be recycled into palettes, Just use the trimmings that still have the surface intact. Part of the Sheer Heaven tooth does transfer with an image. That is what holds the liquified image together during transfer, in fact. But, you can use the trimmings to make palettes, because the surface is still there.
NOTE to my Travel Journal students: Use a Blossom pocket to hold your palette.