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Fine Art Appraisal

The Usage of Watercolor Paintings Over the Years

The unique style of watercolor paintings has made it a widely enjoyed and appreciated form of art practiced around the world. How was its value achieved over the years? Keep reading to learn more about why and how these paintings increased in popularity among fine art appraisal professionals and artists throughout history.

Ancient History

Watercolor paintings have a beautiful, rich history. This method of painting was used in cave paintings when water was mixed with pigments to create paint. As time passed, more types of paint were developed. However, this specific style of painting remained popular because the colors were easier to work with, and the transparent layers created unique artwork. They are made by utilizing pigments placed in a water-based solution and are usually painted on paper. According to My Modern Met, they are well-known for the transparent layers created using this technique.

Middle Ages

During the Middle Ages, watercolor paint was used to create manuscripts and maps. People quickly discovered that it did not require many fine movements with the brush, making it easy to paint manuscripts. Painters began to dabble with watercolors at this time, but they were not as frequently used as they would become later in history. Manuscripts in particular paved the way for watercolor’s usage throughout Europe.


Although watercolors were not considered extremely well-known throughout Europe, China enjoyed many watercolor paintings. The first ones were often painted with fingers on silk and other luxurious fabrics. Many of these pieces today are preserved in museums if they are discovered. After China began to expand and meet visitors, different countries, such as Japan, followed suit.


These special paints dramatically rose in popularity during the Renaissance era in Europe. During this period, artists began to enjoy various types of art, from famous sculptures to paintings. As art appreciation continued to grow, so did watercolor painting. It was often used on parchment paper and was no longer reserved for manuscripts. Many of the works we love from Europe today were created during the 14th to 16th centuries.

Today, watercolor paintings are one of the most accessible and engaging forms of practicing art. Looking for fine art appraisal experts to help you procure and value gorgeous watercolor artwork? Contact A.A. Fine Art today to learn more about our services and get the assistance you need!