View Full Version : What's the difference??

09-06-2004, 12:00 PM
:confused: I remember back in my school days, working with Acrylics briefly, but mostly with Poster Paints and watercolours. Now that was 150 years ago and I have never revisited any of those mediums, (except watercolours)so I hardly remember how they handled!!!

150 years later, I had my rebirth into art with oils and now watercolours. So my question is...............what are Poster paints, and what are they used primerly for? Is it the same as Tempra? If no..........what then is Tempra, and what is it best used for? And lastly, how do they both compare to Acrylics? I know acrylics have some kind of plastic resin (well I think) in its composition.

Just want to understand and who knows-maybe explore, somewhere down the road.

Thanks in advance to anyone and everyone who can clarify this for me.

09-06-2004, 02:01 PM
Poster paints vary in their makeup depending on who manufactures them, but they tend to share some characteristics - fairly uniform opacity, matt finish and smooth consistency. The ones we used in school when I was a child were water-soluble when dry - basically a crude type of gouache. These days some are acrylic or vinyl colours as they are waterproof when dry.

Some poster paints are sold as 'tempera colours' as you say, especially in continental brands I think, but this is very misleading as tempera should really only be used to describe a very old medium, pigments bound with egg yolk. I have some manufactured in the Czech Republic that are called this and they are gouache, as are most paints sold under this name as far as I know.

Acrylics are bound with a polymer emulsion and dry to a flexible plastic film. Unlike poster colour they tend to have a variety of opacities, from very transparent to quite opaque, and usually dry to a satin or semi-gloss finish.


09-06-2004, 09:37 PM
Thanks for taking the time to explain. It is much clearer now.