This is a very special paint, a genuine carmine lake produced from Peruvian Cochineal, a scale insect which lives on the prickly pear cactus. The red colour is due to the presence of Carminic acid.
This has an incredible and long history as a lake pigment in paint, from the Aztecs to the Renaissance this paint has been present. It would be of great interest to a painter pursuing historical practices/materials or engaged in research/restoration.
Largely now replaced by synthetic crimsons such Alizarin or Quinacridone, this is the only natural crimson available. It is some hue, so deep and very beautiful, I have always been impressed by Alizarin Crimson but really the depth of this is on a another level. It is a strong tinter and the tints are high chroma purples and lilacs.
However it is not regarded for it's lightfastness, so please be aware of the tendency to degrade over time, this can be extended dependent on how it is used.
Pigment - Natural Red 4 - Cochineal
Opacity - Transparent
Binder - Linseed Oil