a personal art course, but with too many words and not enough drawings

Posts Tagged ‘Acrylic

‘Sticky’ acrylic paints

with one comment

Helpful notes on acrylic paint from Ilaekae of the ConceptArt forums. I went searching after noticing that my acrylic-painted Sculpey dinosaur was still sticky after a week.

I think what you’re questioning isn’t a “drying” problem as much as it is a natural tendency for many plastics to be “sticky” or “soft” to the touch. The copolymers used in painting don’t become “hard” the way an oil painting or varnish does, especially in heavy straight applications, but have a through-and-through softness that is normal to the medium. That’s why your fingernail mark pops back out to some degree, and why you can make a mark in the first place. This causes problems with dirt and nicotine/smoke in the air collecting on the paint surface faster than with varnished pieces and oils. It also causes MAJOR problem if acrylic paintings are stored face to face, or pushed up against each other front to back. NEVER stack paintings on canvas panels on top of each other–the weight of the pile will make them stick together enough to damage them when you try to separate them. This isn’t as big a problem when additives (sand, glass beads, dirt, etc.) are added to increase the texture/thickness of the paint since it breaks up the slick uniform surface.


Written by krysjez

October 23, 2010 at 6:08 pm

Posted in Painting, Tips

Tagged with

Which acrylic medium should I use?

with one comment

This is what happens when you set me loose on the internet while I’m studying for my SOVA (Study of Visual Art) exam tomorrow.

I love the Winsor & Newton web site because there are a lot of good articles on both artmaking and the history of art materials. As can be expected the articles usually refer only to W&N products, but many of the basic products can be found in other manufacturers’ catalogs as well. Today’s post is a  handy diagram from their guide to acrylic mediums page:

Some other products mentioned that might be useful to you in your own work:

Due to its creamy consistency, I often use it instead of white paint because it blends so much easier…I prefer it to Titanium White…

  • My hero James Gurney uses acrylic matte medium to seal his pencil drawings first before beginning to paint. As the chart shows it “decreases gloss” and “reduces consistency” if you mix it with your paint.

I’ve been trying to do a bit of impasto in the middle of a painting but the impasto effect is proving ridiculously hard to achieve. I could use some of that modeling paste about now…

Written by krysjez

July 2, 2010 at 3:59 pm

Quick Update

with 3 comments

Well, it’s been quite some time since I last updated here.

I’m currently working on an acrylic painting, despite swearing never to touch acrylic again at the age of 12. Sigh…for various reasons I can’t show images of the painting right now, but here’s a photo from the studio:18052010145 An upturned table (only this kind of table, unfortunately) makes a very good brush holder + tape-sticking area + place to store bottles of paint + place to keep water! If you spill the water it gets contained by the table edges.

On other fronts, my grand plan for un-sucking my art remains pathetically unrealized. I’ve been trying to sketch more people from real life but my strokes are really horribly messy and you can’t tell what I’m drawing.

What the hell? I’m not that hairy.

— A subject

Written by krysjez

May 19, 2010 at 10:18 pm

Posted in Drawing, Painting

Tagged with , ,

Acrylics & Figure Drawing #3

leave a comment »


My new (ish) set of Daler-Rowney System3 acrylics. I think I mentioned them before.

flickr13-01-10-2 (Small)

First try. Pretty bad huh…the apple texturing is all right though. Just drybrushed a bit of red on. For my second try I even did a charcoal drawing to try to work out the values! Not that it was much use in the end though…I don’t know what happened to the painting. I either threw it away halfway or lost it. Though one thing that the painting did for me  was show how similar to oils acrylics can look. As some of my friends may know I am enamoured with oils, and this was one of the reasons why I decided to try making myself un-hate acrylics. I can’t say it’s been very successful though, but that’s also possibly due to the fact that I don’t paint very well.

 flickr27-01-10 (Small)  DSC08676 (Small)

Figure drawing last week (nude models ahead):

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by krysjez

February 28, 2010 at 9:48 pm

No-stretch anti-cockling solution for paper?

with 2 comments

I am too impatient to stretch paper before I use it. If a painting cockles, I turn it face down on a smooth, clean surface and wipe all over the back with a damp cloth. Then I put a drawing board over it, weight it down and leave it to dry. The cockling disappears as if by magic!

Terry Harrison, Brush with Acrylics: Painting the easy way

Gotta try this sometime. I’m really impatient as well, plus every time I try to stretch paper I just end up getting adhesive on my window and an unstretched piece of paper.

Written by krysjez

February 6, 2010 at 9:01 pm

Painting Knife

leave a comment »

My new painting knife: Brandless No. 6

While waiting for my turn to buy uniforms today at Beauty World I couldn’t stop myself from wandering into Art Lab and looking at the paint section. The staffer today was really friendly and helpful, a stark contrast to the staff who were there the last time I visited (a surly fat lady and an equally surly skinny woman).

I couldn’t help myself and bought a painting knife. A bit of backstory.

I bought a Winsor & Newton System3 starter set the other day, determined to make myself competent at acrylics (I have hated them since I first tried painting with them when I was thirteen). So far it has not worked. I mix paint with my brush, which means that the paint gets spread out pretty thin. With oils, this is still all right: I drybrush a lot when adding detail. However with acrylics, due to the larger surface area, the paint dries so fast that I can’t even finish painting a background before I have to mix a new batch. And naturally this scenario repeats itself with the second batch although I am working as fast as I can.

A palette knife or painting knife – palette knives don’t have the big bend in the middle, but both can be used for mixing – makes managing paint on the palette a lot easier. You can fold the paint in on itself to get a well-mixed color. You can scrape thin layers of paint together into a more substantial pile before you use it. They can also be used for mark-making as part of the painting, but for the meantime I just hope it doesn’t become another art white elephant.

Written by krysjez

January 26, 2010 at 5:32 pm