Color Bursts vs Brusho Crystals

28 Sep
Brusho vs Color Bursts

Color Bursts vs Brusho

I have both the Color Burst and the Brusho Crystals products in the shop. Both appear to be very similar type of products, but I wanted to do a head-to-head comparison on them so I really knew what they both could do.

Color Bursts are concentrated microfine watercolor powder. Brushos are watercolor ink crystals. Similar but not exactly the same. Both can be used in similar ways.

I started with using a watercolor paper (140lb hot press), since they are both watercolor products. I tried them both with sprinkling on the paper first, then adding water, or spritzing the paper with water and then adding color. Both ways work great – it probably depends on the effect you want or how you like to work or how entertaining you find the process. You can go in and blend them further with a brush if you like.

I also tried both of them on glossy photo paper, which offers up another look for you. Both gave great colors and created interesting effects.

I tried them on silk fabric as well, since I know lots of people work on fabric. They both bled nicely into the silk, although they needed quite a bit of water to do so. However, even after drying and heat-setting, they both bled a lot of color when I got them wet again. Definitely not permanent on fabric – even if heat-set. But if you were using a fabric in a mixed media piece that wouldn’t be washed, you might like the results, especially if you were trying to color match something.

I also was able to mix both with small amounts of water and create my own liquid water colors. So if you want to paint something directly, or create a wash of color, or make a spray – it is pretty easy to do. The Brushos do take longer to dissolve in water (which was true no matter which process I was using).

Both also mix well with other mediums. If you like to use a glaze, or gel medium, or fiber paste, or any of those types of things, you can get nice color mixes.

Both do reactivate with water once they are dry. This is common for watercolors, so you just need to be aware of it so you can use it wisely in your projects. You can see I was able to pull brush strokes of color from the original color splotches. Of course, you might want this effect. 🙂

Both are easy to write on with pens or markers once dry. So I am envisioning some beautiful Zentangle® pieces.

As you can see, both offer similar results across the board. The colors are vibrant and blend nicely. The effect you get when sprinkling with water is fun to watch. The main differences are the packaging and the powder vs crystals.

I like the Color Bursts packaginging better. It shows the color right on the label vs the white label with just the color name printed on the Brushos. Much easier to just grab the one you need when you are working. I also like the Color Bursts tips that lightly poof out a very small amount of the powder when you use it. The Brushos have an open top which you can shake out the crystals you want, or dip with a brush or pinch with your fingers. While that gives you more options, I found it was harder to control the amount of crystals. Mostly I ended up using way more than I needed, so there was more waste (you can always punch a couple small holes into the cap so you can use it like a shaker).  I thought the closed bottle with a small tip of the Color Bursts vs the open bottle with the Brushos was better. If you accidentally tip over the Color Bursts, they don’t spill everywhere. Plus if you are working with numerous colors and have all your bottles open, you have to be careful about spraying water into the open bottle of the Brushos. It felt like there was more risk of waste or spillage with the Brushos. However, there are quite a few more colors available in the Brusho crystals than the Color Bursts. Since they are very similar products, I think you could easily mix and match the colors you wanted from each product’s palette and use them in your art.

I really enjoyed using both products and seeing the ‘magic’ results that happen when pigments meet water. I can imagine different ways to use these products to create effects. Plus they are lots of fun, and isn’t that the most important thing? 🙂

There is still more experimenting to be done of course, but this offers you a quick reference to the two products. Both products are available from the shop.


Let Your Inner Artist out to Play

Blue Twig Studio – 5039 N Academy Blvd – Colorado Springs, CO 80918



7 Responses to “Color Bursts vs Brusho Crystals”

  1. Lelia Guilbert September 28, 2015 at 5:33 pm #

    I wonder if mixing either product with Golden Gac 900 would make the color permanent on fabric? Of course there are other water color products that work on fabric. Inktense pencils and blocks may be the better choice for textile artists.


    • Deb Prewitt September 28, 2015 at 6:34 pm #

      I didn’t experiment with Gac at all, but I did mix with a glaze and that seemed to make the products permanent – at least on paper.


  2. Barbara Simpson September 28, 2015 at 5:35 pm #

    Thanks Deb for the color comparisons. I’ll let you know how my experiments turn out. Barbara Simps


    • Deb Prewitt September 28, 2015 at 6:35 pm #

      Please do Barbara. I like hearing about what experiments other people try.


  3. terzae November 19, 2015 at 2:25 pm #

    I’ve been adding these to my TextureScapes, and will be including their use in my upcoming classes. They are so much fun! Additionally, I used them in my recent submissions to the upcoming miniature show. I sprinkled them on dried rose petals that I had sprayed with water and vinegar for an interesting effect.


    • Deb Prewitt November 19, 2015 at 2:49 pm #

      that sounds cool – glad you like these products


  4. Playful Pandora March 26, 2017 at 3:30 pm #

    Thank you for this!! I’ve had my color burst powders for ages but forgot them. Dug them out today to color swatch and had some questions… you answered them!


I love to read your comments

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Royalty Free Images
%d bloggers like this: