Color Spotlight: Quinacridone Burnt Scarlet (PR206)

Daniel Smith – Quinacridone Burnt Sienna

A single pigment, transparent red-brown. (I am constantly misidentifying this as ‘Quinacridone Burnt Sienna’, so I’m lucky there is no color by that name.) Other brands may call this Brown Madder.

Note that as of 2023, this color is discontinued and being replaced in most lines (e.g. Winsor & Newton has replaced their PR206 Brown Madder with PR179).

Experiment Results

Gradient: A lovely even smooth gradient from a deep red-brown to a light red glaze (not pink, not orange, not peach). Moderate tinting strength; difficult to get extremely dark.

Opacity: Transparent.

Granulation: Not granulating.

Glaze: Deep brown glaze, darker than the masstone I was able to achieve.

Quin Burnt Scarlet experiments page 2

Salt: Moderate reaction

Droplets: Strong reaction

Comparison to Other Brands

Winsor & Newton – Brown Madder (PR206)

This color is no longer available. I found it to be fairly similar to DS, perhaps a bit weaker.

Comparison to Other Colors

Perylene Maroon (PR179)

DS Quin Burnt Scarlet vs Daler Rowney Perylene Maroon (PR179)

Daler Rowney’s Perylene Maroon is a similar hue, but QBS is a bit more orange. Some brands’ Perylene Maroon is even less orange-toned and more bricklike.

Deep Scarlet (PR175)

DS Quin Burnt Scarlet (PR206) above vs. DS Deep Scarlet (PR175) below

These colors are very similar in hue, strength, and value range. QBS is slightly more orangey and lower chroma (more brownish, less bright). See more in my post What’s the difference between Deep Scarlet and Quinacridone Burnt Scarlet?

Color Mixes

Nickel Azo Yellow

Mijello Mission Gold Green Gold (PY150) + Daniel Smith Quinacridone Burnt Scarlet (PR206) on Wonder Forest paper

I got a much deeper color out of QBS than I usually can on the end of this gradient; I think I got a chunk of dry paint stuck on my brush! This is not typical.

These mixes look nice to me; a classic Quin Gold hue. Some companies do use a PY150/PR206 mix for their Quin Gold!

Transparent Brown Oxide

DS Transparent Brown Oxide (PR101) + DS Quinacridone Burnt Scarlet (PR206)

The middle brown hue of TBO pulls QBS into the mahogany brown space.

Carbazole Violet

DS Carbazole Violet (PV23) + DS Quin Burnt Scarlet (PR206) on Wonder Forest paper

A muted sunset combo, with mixes in the dull maroon area. A bit muddy.

Prussian Blue

Holbein Prussian Blue (PB27) + Daniel Smith Quin Burnt Scarlet (PR206) on Wonder Forest paper

Nice muting of Prussian Blue to blue-gray, and QBS to dark maroon. The middle tones are dull browns, not gray.


DS Quinacridone Burnt Scarlet (PR206) + DV Cerulean Genuine (PB36) on Wonder Forest paper

Now here are some nice grays, with interesting flecks of bright blue granulation!

Phthalo Green

DV Phthalo Green (PG7) + DS Quinacridone Burnt Scarlet (PR206) on Wonder Forest paper

It feels like these are close to, but not quite complements. Or perhaps it’s possible to get an even gray, but I just didn’t manage it. Muddy mixes in my eyes.

What Others Say

Its luminous dark glow is beautiful by itself and useful in warming other colors. If mixed with blues in darker washes, Brown Madder does not go muddy like Burnt Sienna. This is a very effective color for painting rocks, deep-lake water and deep-autumn foliage, and for darkening fleshtones.

Zoltan Szabo, Zoltan Szabo’s Color-by-Color Guide to Watercolor, p.24: “Brown Madder” (1998)

Made with PR206, this can replace Brown Madder in many palettes, or provide a transparent alternative to Indian Red. It is also a convenient colour to use for shadows in scarlet flowers. 

Jane Blundell

TOP 40 PIGMENT  Quinacridone maroon PR206 is a lightfast, semitransparent, moderately staining, dark valued, moderately intense earth red pigment… a very attractive color for botanicals, portraits, or landscapes. It is an unusually versatile neutralizing complement with a wide range of blue and blue green pigments, from iron blue (PB27) to viridian (PG18). It adds a slight granular texture to the phthalocyanines and complements the granular texture of the cobalts; it creates evocative dark mixtures with dioxazine violet, hansa yellow, and indanthrone blue. Its major drawback is its relatively weak tinting strength; other dark pigments can overpower it; for that reason I prefer perylene maroon (PR179). An excellent glazing pigment to cut the saturation of cool hues or to build warm shadows; very easy to handle overall. See also the section on quinacridone pigments.

Bruce McEvoy

My Review

I like this a lot! I often like my earth colors to be granulating, but the transparent non-granulation of this one makes it a lovely smooth mixer. I much prefer its mixes to those of Perylene Maroon. They both mute cool colors (making, say, blue in to blue-gray), but Perylene Maroon does so in a way that I find muddy and ugly and Quin Burnt Scarlet does so in a way that I find natural and beautiful. (I bet most people wouldn’t see any difference at all, and it may all be in my head, but that’s where I live, so.)

Perylene Maroon mixes (left) vs Quin Burnt Scarlet mixes (right)

I also prefer this to Indian Red/Lunar Red Rock, which have an opacity that I find quite harsh.

As McEvoy notes, this has a slightly lower tinting strength than I would ideally like which makes it a bit difficult to mix with high-strength colors like Phthalos.

Generally I have tended to replace this in my palette with Deep Scarlet, especially since PR206 is now harder and harder to find.

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