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bobsart
09-22-2008, 03:32 PM
What are the pros and cons of using a drying retarder in your paint? Has anyone had any bad experiences with it? If not, any particular brands you might want to recommend...........or should I just learn to paint faster?

thanx bob:confused:

thebrush
09-22-2008, 03:37 PM
You don't need to learn how to paint faster just smarter, i have been painting with acrylics for the past 8 years and after awhile you get to know how to handle your paint. Good LUCK

sveldstra
09-22-2008, 03:45 PM
I have a slow-dry blending fluid that I use alot, if that's the same thing. I use it to dilute the colours so I can add multiple layers and build the colours up where I want them. I find it makes blending so much easier and I save alot of time and paint not having to mix each shade individually. The only negative I've encountered is that it puts a gloss coat on the finished product that made taking jpegs for reproduction purposes in the studio, much more difficult, (too much reflection from the sheen). But when I asked other artists they told me the solution was simple, do the photography outside in the shade. It works like a charm. I use a product called Liquitex made in France, but haven't tried any others since I like how this works.

Linee
09-22-2008, 04:15 PM
My spritz bottle of water is never far from my hand. When I feel a bit of tackiness in the paint, I give the pallet a squirt. Works for me. I store unused paint on the pallet in a plastic container with a wet, wadded piece of paper towel.

susme48
09-22-2008, 05:12 PM
For some reason, I don't like using water...but I also use Liquitex slo dri blending gel...love it! It still does not keep it from drying too long...and sometimes still not long enough....:lol: Oh, and I am NOT an expert....pretty new to painting.

jocelynsart
09-22-2008, 05:22 PM
Oh man that stuff, I hate it. It makes the paint gummy and yucky and it changes the properties of the acrylic, properties I actually love and work with. It is so un necessary in my honest opinion.
It does not dry crazy fast, especially if used more impasto and not so thinned down. You can blend it and you can use it partially dry in a drybrush or rubbing manner, to almost tint your surface with pigment. There are many ways to use this medium without needing it to dry slow. Using a blending fluid (Liquitex and Golden both have one) does cause it to dry a bit slower and I find that is good enough.
I never even used a blending fluid till last year and the faster dry did not bother me in the least. Glazing and dry brushing worked fine for me to blend and work in the way I love, in a traditional representational manner which requires shading and blending with the paint. Acrylic dries faster on canvas as opposed to a hardboard gessoed surface, as well.
It's not a matter of painting faster, it's a matter of altering painting methods. Adapt your technique and strokes to work With this faster drying medium.
Acrylic should nto be over thineed with water as it can disturb it's makeup and ability to adhere permanently to the surface. I'd never use more than about a 70 paint 30 water ratio. Blending fluid pretty much eliminates the use of water.
The spray water thing I've never done. I put out only small amounts of pigment at a time, on a ceramic plate palette.
Jocelyn

Aires
09-22-2008, 05:39 PM
Jerry Yarnell and others routinely use a spray mist before beginning a painting so the canvas doesn't grab and waste a lot of paint and make the brush drag. It also keep the pigments on your palette from skimming over. The key is a very fine mist aersol sprayer so you get a bare mist, not really wet and never runny. The mount of mist is not enough to cause problems with adhesion but it takes time to recognize a bare sheen of moisture on the canvas.

susme48
09-22-2008, 05:41 PM
Jocelyn....question please? what is it that you hate? and what would the dif between a blending gel and a slow-dri blending gel be? I hardly ever use water, which, as you say, thins the paint, since I like the paint thick. I have tried a retarder, and I hated it....it dried even glossier than the rest of the paint...and I did not like that at all...I have been using what I have left to add a gloss like on eyes or water, if I want a slightly shinier look. Most of the mediums I have purchased are liquitex, because that is about all that is carried within 100 miles of where I live. I usually only use the slow-dri now on portrait work, where I need to go back on work on things for a bit longer than on landscapes.

I have to admit I like being able to paint fast, and not wait forever for layers to dry...:)

jonesbf
09-22-2008, 06:09 PM
I used a retarder briefly, but was never comfortable with how much to use. After a while you just get used to the paint and can pretty much control it with just plain ole water.

OkeeKat
09-22-2008, 07:05 PM
I only use water and liquitex heavy body paints.. I use the spritz bottle very often as I mix my paints with brush small amts at a time and paint thin. guess its similar or is glazing. just doing my own thing.. but it seems to work for me.

Bill_E
09-22-2008, 08:41 PM
I've used it when I needed a little extra time for blending, but always sparingly. I keep a small jar of it mixed 5 parts water to 1 part retarder. To be honest though, with options like Golden Open or Interactives, if you really want extended drying time, that may be a better option.

objectivistartist
09-22-2008, 10:32 PM
After a while you just get used to the paint and can pretty much control it with just plain ole water. Exactly - used it way back 30 years ago, but found that with my detailing, it was not needed... now, with the new Golden, for skies can see using that to get that Parrish grading of blue, instead of unsuccessfully using retarders [but then, I use acrylics for my picture window murals - 4'x8' - and that probably explains the lack of success, meaning too large a space to work with]...

Bright Eyes
09-22-2008, 11:11 PM
I mix in the slow drying medium with the atlier interactives. It works great for me. Mixing water in with the paint while it is on the pallet keeps it from drying faster as well. And never underestimate the use of the handy dandy spray bottle!

jocelynsart
09-23-2008, 07:24 AM
I hate the Retarders for acrylics. The slo dri or blending gels are fine.
Retarders change the chemical makeup of the paint, and the blending gels don't.
Jocelyn

bobsart
09-23-2008, 10:37 AM
Thanx experts!!!!

I have to get serious with acrylics. After many years of oil painting, the wife has lost her tolerance for the smell of linseed and terp. Since I paint in the basement near the washer and dryer, she claims the laundry comes out of the dryer smelling like solvent..............she was right. When she does the laundry on days I don't paint, no smell. Didn't notice it before since I'm retired now and am painting more.

I"ve heard that retarder changes the chemical characteristics enough to affect adherence and permanence. So I came to those who know.

Great info:clap: :clap:

susme48
09-23-2008, 02:00 PM
Thanks for asking, I learned alot too!

Jesse Riggle
09-23-2008, 05:03 PM
I use retarder a lot when I paint. I have the Golden brand. I enjoy working with it.

Typically, if I use retarder it is only for one pass of a painting. Though, I don't use it all the time.

When I do use it, I just squirt some onto my palette and mix it in with the paint as I go, also using water and fluid matte medium. It does tend to make the paints more transparent, so it is best to not try to work off a white surface. And I find letting it dry overnight before trying to paint on top of it is key or sometimes you'll end up rubbing the paint clean off in spots.

Once it is dry it does not seem to have any adverse effects on the paint, no weird texture issues or binding issues. Also realize it only extends the working time of the paint so much. Maybe 10 - 15 minutes of real wetness (but that is a good stretch longer than straight acrylics) and then it will be sticky for an hour or so.

I say buy a small bottle and play around with it. Maybe you'll like it, maybe you wont. I am actually a bit surprised that the consensus (of this thread anyway) is that is is worthless.

jocelynsart
09-23-2008, 06:51 PM
I would say, yes good advice, give it a try first. I personally hate the stuff ( I hated what it did to my paint and that it remained sticky and such). I have tried it in the past 3 times, but there no saying you won't find it works well for you. I find I work well enough and am happy enough with acrylics the way they are, fast dry and all. It is not an adhereance issue, it's what it changed in the paint for me; transparency, stickiness, less easy to blend, too tacky wet for too long, etc.

AMuse
09-23-2008, 07:45 PM
I use palette wetting spray by liquitex and if I need the paint on my canvas to stay wetter for blending I just spray right onto the canvas. it doesn't extend the "wet" time for eons just for a little while, and doesn't add much to the paint, although if you use it alot for a painting it will take away some gloss.

JamieWG
09-25-2008, 12:36 PM
Thanx experts!!!!

I have to get serious with acrylics. After many years of oil painting, the wife has lost her tolerance for the smell of linseed and terp. Since I paint in the basement near the washer and dryer, she claims the laundry comes out of the dryer smelling like solvent..............she was right. When she does the laundry on days I don't paint, no smell. Didn't notice it before since I'm retired now and am painting more.

I"ve heard that retarder changes the chemical characteristics enough to affect adherence and permanence. So I came to those who know.

Great info:clap: :clap:

Bob, the new Golden OPEN paints will give you that extended working time without having to add anything to the paint film. Give them a try. You won't look back! ;)

Jamie

BeeCeeEss
09-25-2008, 11:13 PM
I've tried using retarder and also hated the way it made my paints feel like working with tar. You also have to be careful not to use too much of it since it is an additive rather than a medium and too much can prevent your paints from drying at all.

In recent months I've discovered Liquitex Slow-Dri Blending Medium, as others here have mentioned. It's wonderful stuff and, since it's a medium (not an additive) you can use pretty much as much as you like. If you work some into your paints on the palette, it will keep them moist and usable for an extended time. It makes the slow, smooth blending of paints on your canvas or painting surface much, much easier. It will make your paints a bit more transparent, depending on how much you use. You can also brush it onto your canvas first, then paint into it. Another plus is that it keeps the paints from drying quickly on your brushes so you don't have to be so concerned about constantly rinsing them out.

The new line of Golden Open Acrylics is a great boon for oil painters who are trying to make the switch to acrylic painting. I really love them. I still use my regular acrylics, but it's great to have the Golden Opens for doing large areas or portraits, etc. where I want beautiful, soft blending.

I often brush water onto my canvas or paper to pre-wet it before I brush my paint on. It just helps the paint go on a little easier and further.

You also might want to get some flow aid to add a bit to your water and it will make your paint flow much more easily off your brushes. This is especially helpful when you are trying to do fine detail work. A lot of folks find that acrylics don't want to flow easily off a fine brush. The flow aid will help with that. Just mix it in your water according to the directions on whatever brand you buy.

I often use my fluid acrylics like watercolors and the addition of flow aid to the water will make the washes level out and go on very smoothly.

Sorry if I got a bit off topic about the retarder, but I just wanted to pass on some tips to another oil-to-acrylics convert. Happy painting!

Beverly

thebrush
10-07-2009, 01:42 PM
Just give it some time my friend and you will be able to control your paint and you wont need anything but the paint that come right out of the tube. Have fun

Flopka
10-07-2009, 02:41 PM
Call me crazy, but I use 99-cent bottles of craft-paint blending gel.

aspenman
10-07-2009, 03:05 PM
Give the Atelier Interactive Acrylics a try AND try to speed up your painting a tad - I use a palette knife - goes on real quickly!!!!

mickeyw3340
10-07-2009, 03:49 PM
I also use the Liquitex Pallette Wetting Spray. The tiny thumb operated push style spray nozzle gets clogged all the time. Pain in the Old Kister...! I use it in a larger bottle with a hand operated trigger style sprayer. Works great just like mentioned earlier in this thread.

IanArt
10-07-2009, 06:20 PM
If you learn to glaze for a colour gradient rather than working wet on wet you will actually want the paint to dry faster (believe it or not). I keep a hair dryer around at all times for this very reason.

Ian