Color Spotlight: Isoindolinone Yellow Deep (PY110)

Holbein – Isoindolinone Yellow Deep (PY110)

Yellow-oranges made from PY110 have many possible names, including Isoindolinone Yellow Deep (Holbein, shown) and Permanent Yellow Deep (Daniel Smith). I like the Schmincke name, Yellow Orange, because it’s simple, descriptive, and easy to spell. This color exists in the liminal space somewhere between a deep, orange-toned (warm) yellow and a light, yellow-toned orange.

Experiment Results

Gradient: In mass, it’s a fiery yellow-orange, and diffuses to a warm glow. Glazes to a pumkiny orange.

Opacity: Looks 100% transparent to me.

Glazing: Achieves a very vibrant orange in glazing.

Comparison to Other Brands

Schmincke Horadam – Yellow Orange

Schmincke Horadam – Yellow Orange (PY110)

This is an older Color Spotlight that I painted a long time ago, so it’s kind of terrible for that reason. I think the color is good. (Schmincke gives me a lot of hard edges in general, though.)

Comparison to Other Colors

Hansa Yellow Deep (PY65)

DS Hansa Yellow Deep (PY65) vs Holbein Isoinodolinone Yellow Deep (PY110)

See What’s the difference between Hansa Yellow Deep (PY65) and Isoindolinone Yellow Deep (PY110)?

Mission Gold – Yellow Orange (PO73, PY65)

Mission Gold – Yellow Orange (PO73/PY65)

A slightly oranger hue with the same name, made from a mix of Pyrrol Orange (PO73) and Hansa Yellow Medium (PY65).

Color Mixes

Cobalt Blue

Yellow Orange + Cobalt Blue
Holbein Isoindolinone Yellow Deep + DV Cobalt Blue (PB28)

I like PY110 Yellow Orange as a sunset horizon color, but the problem is that it doesn’t mix in nice way with a neutral blue like Cobalt. I find this gray kind of ugly. A teensy bit does neutralize the blue just enough to make it blackish, which is nice for night skies.


Holbein Isoindolinone Yellow Deep (PY110) + Winsor & Newton Viridian (PG18)

A small amount of PY110 is a great mixer with Viridian turning it from a bright blue-green to a more naturalistic and yellower leaf green. This mix is a great granulating Sap Green alternative.

Commercial Mixes Using This Pigment

Daniel Smith New Gamboge

A mix of PY110 and PY97 (Hansa Yellow Medium), New Gamboge was the canonical warm yellow to me for a long time because it is in the Daniel Smith Essentials starter kit.

Daniel Smith New Gamboge: Gradient, opacity, glazing, and color mixing tests

I struggle to tell the difference between plain PY110 unless they’re right next to each other, then I guess I can see that New Gamboge has some yellow mixed in (making it more of a “warm yellow” to PY110’s “sort of orange”).

PY110 Yellow Orange on the left, DS New Gamboge on the right.

What Others Say

TOP 40 PIGMENT… My 2004 tests suggest it may be the most lightfast deep yellow pigment available…. PY110 is a beautiful warm yellow, with a hue between hansa yellow deep (PY65) and benzimida orange (PO62), but it is more transparent, slightly darker valued, somewhat more active wet in wet, and with a larger hue shift toward yellow in tints. It provides superior landscape green mixtures with both green or blue paints. For those concerned with paint lightfastness, toxicity and transparency, PY110 may be the optimal choice for a deep yellow paint, superior even to nickel dioxine yellow PY153.

Bruce MacEvoy,

About Daniel Smith New Gamboge:

New Gamboge was a fun one to have for painting the cottonwoods at their peak, when the leaves varied from a lighter yellow (often painted with Hansa Yellow Medium)  to a deep golden color that New Gamboge was perfect for. Interestingly, New Gamboge is a mix that also includes Hansa Yellow Medium, which might be why they work so well together. I also found myself adding New Gamboge to stone mixtures much more often than the Hansa yellows, because I wanted that rich and deep yellow tone. 

Claire Giordano, Fall in the Southwest: Favorite Colors

My Review

PY110 (or the PY110 mix that is New Gamboge) is handy in mixing up bold oranges or even just using as a warm yellow/light orange on its own. Lightfast and nontoxic, it’s an excellent choice for a paint. I have generally moved away from using bold yellow-orange and toward earthier, muted yellows which I believe, counterintuitively, look nicer in sunset skies; but a color like this has a great use case in warmer palettes, such as autumn or desert. That said, I tend to use PY65 in those cases.

On my palette? No.

Alternatives: It main direct competitor is PY65, which I slightly prefer. For sunny golden hour paintings, I often find that an earth yellow is more useful (e.g. MANS, Naples Yellow Deep, Quin Gold).

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