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Amorphis
04-12-2002, 06:31 PM
Hi all,
can anyone explain or give a brief description of what is different about certain whites? (Zinc, Titanium, and Flake are the ones I've heard of but there's probably more!) I work mainly in acrylics, and generally use titanuim white, for no specific reason at all.
Any insight would be appreciated!
Thanks

Einion
04-14-2002, 02:15 AM
Titanium White is the most common white in acrylics, it is completely lightfast, very opaque and the whitest white.

Zinc White is also available but only from two makers that I know of. It is relatively transparent so might be worth exploring for glazing effects or mixing transparent tints. It is also completely lightfast.

Flake White is not available in acrylics.

Einion

Amorphis
04-15-2002, 03:11 AM
Einion,

Thank you for the info, it is appreciated.

A

diphascon
04-15-2002, 09:35 AM
Originally posted by Einion
Titanium White is the most common white in acrylics, it is completely lightfast, very opaque and the whitest white./B]

"The whitest white" sounds cool. Do you mean it is the most neutral white? (you might well call it the "blackest white" then as well :D )

Originally posted by Einion
Zinc White is also available but only from two makers that I know of.


I was a bit surprised to discover it in the Daler-Rowney acrylic product lines.

cheers

martin

Einion
04-15-2002, 05:31 PM
Guten Tag Martin, yes Titanium White is usually the most neutral as well as being the most absolutely bright. Flake has a noticeable warm hue, like a touch of a yellow earth mixed into titanium, and zinc is usually cool.

Originally posted by diphascon
I was a bit surprised to discover it in the Daler-Rowney acrylic product lines.
Oh, that makes three makers then! I don't look at D-R's range as I don't think it compares well with other brands for a number of reasons so I missed this. The other two for anyone interested are Golden and Maimeri Brera, both of whom make better paint IMO.

Einion

Painted Melody
04-15-2002, 05:35 PM
Hi everyone,

I was thinking the same question! I am a watercolorist (with no white) now to acrylics -- and I was told to take my titanium and drop it into the nearest trash bin. The professor said to use Gesso white in our palette since titanium has weak covering power.

Since I have no experience I cannot say, but would appreciate any thoughts on this.

Thanks,

Jeremy

Patrick1
04-15-2002, 06:26 PM
I could be wrong, but I'm sure that titanium white has better covering power (opacity) than gesso because gesso often contains calcium carbonate (chalk) as its white pigment, which is less opaque.

Martin and Einion, funny thing, looking at my Golden color chart, the zinc white looks less bright than the titanium white (not surprising) but it also looks less cool than the titanium. Maybe it's only in mixtures that it's cool. Or maybe it's because it's somewhat transparent and thick layers paint of transparent paint look blackened.

Einion
04-16-2002, 10:32 PM
Originally posted by Painted Melody
I was told to take my titanium and drop it into the nearest trash bin. The professor said to use Gesso white in our palette since titanium has weak covering power.
Eek! Geez, art instruction should come with a warning label: Use Teacher With Caution! I definitely wouldn't do this Jeremy. Some Titanium Whites may indeed not be as opaque as acrylic primers but that doesn't mean they are interchangeable. Which brand are you using by the way? I have tried using "gesso" in this way myself in the past in the search for maximal opacity and you will be constantly fighting its nature (brushability, smoothness) while Titanium Whites are formulated to work with the rest of your paints. Tinting strength is also important, Titanium White's should be much better because of the higher proportion of titanium dioxide pigment. Do a few tests and see for yourself, I'm sure you'll agree.


Patrick, remember that opacity is related to pigment load and many acrylic primers, while they do use calcium carbonate or barium sulphate, which are less opaque, are packed with pigment for opacity but also to provide tooth.

Depending on the light I really can't see ZW as noticeably cooler than TW I must admit, but it is a fine distinction, the value difference is easy to see though (interestingly, do you find if you hold the chart just right you can make the zinc swatch disappear?) Its use as a glazing colour will exaggerate its cooler spectrum in practice I am sure, making it easier to see.

Einion

Painted Melody
04-17-2002, 01:16 AM
Einion, I am glad I read your reply before off to paint in acrylics. I guess I will hold off from chuckin the titanium after all :}

I use Finity (W&N), and recently added Golden to the palette. I don't really have a large palette.... i'm a very earth-toney kind of guy.. earth tones (yum) are my security blanket, love that ochre.

I recentlly bought cobalt green so I wonder how that'll work out for me

I appreciate the advice much :)

Jeremy

Patrick1
04-17-2002, 02:18 PM
Originally posted by Einion


Depending on the light I really can't see ZW as noticeably cooler than TW I must admit, but it is a fine distinction, the value difference is easy to see though (interestingly, do you find if you hold the chart just right you can make the zinc swatch disappear?) Its use as a glazing colour will exaggerate its cooler spectrum in practice I am sure, making it easier to see.



Not only is the zinc white sample, to my eyes, not cooler, but in my sample it is clearly warmer than titanium white; it has a slight brownish tinge; as though a tiny speck of unbleached titanium were mixed in.

Now looking at the paper the chart is on; that's what I'd call a cool white...a slight blueish tinge. Yes; at a certain angle the zinc white seems to almost disappear. Perhaps because it's noticably darker, closer in value to the paper it's on.


Question for anybody: do I really need to get a tube of zinc white?...

-is it that much better for gentle tints than titanium white? (couldn't I just use tiny amounts of t.w. instead?)

-would it make noticabley cleaner mixtures with cool colors than t.w.?

Einion
04-19-2002, 08:09 PM
You're welcome Jeremy, glad it was of some help. Let us know what you think of the Cobalt Green, it should work well with your palette. Gotta love those earth colours, I have all the traditionals - Yellow Ochre, Raw Sienna, Burnt Sienna, Raw Umber, Burnt Umber plus Red Oxide. FWIW I would stick to Winsor & Newton for earths, they appear better examples than Golden's for these colours with the possible exception of the Red Oxide where Golden's looks slightly more opaque and is arguably a nicer hue.


Originally posted by Domer
Not only is the zinc white sample, to my eyes, not cooler, but in my sample it is clearly warmer than titanium white; it has a slight brownish tinge; as though a tiny speck of unbleached titanium were mixed in.
Ah, that's interesting. I mentioned a long while back about Zinc White varying - usually cool but sometimes warm - as some sources indicate, but I didn't want to muddy the waters here by referring to it as this is considered a fault with the colour by most people and I doubted it occurred much today. The warmer examples are usually described as slightly brownish and the photos I have seen look that way. I'm surprised at this from Golden though, I would have expected their product to be more consistent. The swatch on mine is perfectly clean, very slightly darker-valued than Titanium in neutral light (like maybe value 9.9) and a little glossier.

And yes, the paper that Golden use for the colour chart is definitely a cool white.

Originally posted by Domer
Question for anybody: do I really need to get a tube of zinc white?...
-is it that much better for gentle tints than titanium white? (couldn't I just use tiny amounts of t.w. instead?)
-would it make noticabley cleaner mixtures with cool colors than t.w.?
IMO most people could live without Zinc White. I don't know for sure, never having used it myself, but I imagine small quantities of Titanium White will give the same masstone tint as ten times that much Zinc White (that's about the difference in tinting strength in oils and acrylics) but the two mixes won't have the same opacity. Of course adding acrylic medium to the TW tint will replicate this to some extent. There might be slight undercolour differences, but I'm guessing it would be inconsequential.

I don't know about the cleaner tints, I doubt there would be much discernible difference. I have two other manufacturers' Titanium Whites for example, with quite different opacities, handling and tinting strength to my Finity (one of them I am sure bulked out with an opacifier) and the tints are precisely the same for all three.

Where Zinc White might be useful is for what it was valued for in oil painting: glazing, to replicate atmospheric effects for example, and in acrylics we don't have to worry about it forming brittle films which are prone to cracking. Considering that true transparency is not exactly mimicked by bulking out with medium, like if you try glazing with a cadmium colour versus a genuinely transparent equivalent, I imagine it would work better for this and for any transparent tint you might want to use for similar purposes although how much better I don't know.

Einion

Patrick1
04-19-2002, 09:53 PM
Thanks.