Masterson Sta-Wet Palette

In this post I’ll be talking about my palette of choice and why I like it.

I use the Masterson Sta-Wet Palette. Unfortunately, it comes only in 12″ x 16″. I would prefer a larger one for the studio, but it’s perfect to take to class or plein air painting.

It holds 12″ x 16″ piece of glass

I like to mix my paint on glass because the paint moves around very easily and it doesn’t absorb any of the oil like the disposable sheets do. You can get a piece of glass that fits perfectly at Home Depot.

CAUTION: Put duck tape on the edges of the glass before putting it in the palette! I have a friend that was taking out the glass to clean the inside of the palette and she didn’t have it taped up. There was blood… Please put the tape on as soon as you get the glass. You’ll lose 1/2 of mixing surface around the edges, but at least you won’t lose a finger. It’s also a good idea to wear gloves while handling the glass.

The glass is really easy to clean.

I haven’t found an easier surface to clean. Even when the paint is dry, a sharp razor blade will take it off with ease. I’ll talk more about this in a later post.

It lets me choose the color of the mixing surface

Having glass as the mixing surface allows me to put anything underneath it. So, I paint a 12×16 canvas panel with an even, light, neutral grey and put it underneath. I don’t like mixing on a white palette because it’s hard to judge the colors of the middle/dark values and they appear to be too dark compared to the white palette. I also, don’t like to use those wooden, brown palettes because they favor the warmer colors. A middle value and neutral color works best for me. But, if you prefer something else, you have the option of making it any color.

It keeps my paint wet

This palette is air tight and keeps my paints wet for a while. If I add some clove oil around the edges of the palette (not directly into the paint), they’ll stay wet even longer. When you get a new palette, it could be really tight and hard to open. The trick is to start at a corner and peel it open.


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