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ArtyHelen
03-22-2001, 04:22 PM
Hi all.

I recently decided I would like to learn to paint, having been strictly a Pencil Artist for about 20 years.

I bought a set of watercolours, but I used them really thick on my first attempt so it was kind of a waste of time using watercolours. http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/smile.gif

So I would like to try either oils or acrylics.

Thing is, I've heard that oils take ages to dry, and acrylics often dry too quickly.

If I were to ask you what is so great about acrylics,what would be your responses?

Thanx,

Helen

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ArtyHelen
03-22-2001, 04:24 PM
Oh, I probably should have added that I'm primarily into portraits.
Thanx.

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LarrySeiler
03-22-2001, 08:08 PM
I did acrylics for about 20 years, and mostly oils these past six years. I also have been putting out quite a few watercolors, Helen. Each has their place, time and purpose.

Acrylics have no odor...whereas oils are not always appreciated in the household. They are quick and easy clean up. Acrylics can be painted with mediums to appear thicker and impasto'ish and done on canvas...I have done a good number that appear as oils, and have had to correct a few galleries my work has been in to change the title card they put next to my work from oils to acrylics. In fact, I have one such "how-to" here on WC with acrylics that demonstrates this effect- http://www.wetcanvas.com/ArtSchool/Acrylics/Waterfall/

If you don't like what you are doing...or have made what you consider an error...within a few minutes you can simply paint it out. No scraping...no fuss. For this reason as an art teacher, I find acrylics very "user friendly" for my grades 8-12....the painting is never a lost cause unless YOU give up on it. Stick with it...and it will come around.

One thing I like with portraits is literally resting upon or laying across my board. Taping the reference within inches of the area (such as an eye) that I'm working on. With acrylics...there's no mess, thus, no problem.

I've done many wildlife conservation stamp design competitions which have deadlines, and I can finish an acrylic...spray varnish it that same day...and by day's end have it matted, shrink wrapped and in the mail off to its competition location. So...it meets deadlines conveniently.

You can also use acrylics like watercolors by simply diluting it to a wash consistency, with the advantage that you can work over it with subsequent layers and it won't lift up nor turn to mud like watercolors would.

I'll show you one example of a portrait I have done in acrylics. Understand now..its not that I don't like watercolors or oils, but you wanted to know what was good about acrylics! btw, for what its worth, I'd recommend Galeria acrylics which come moderately priced in 200ml easy to use spout plastic jars. -Larry
<IMG SRC="http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/22-Mar-2001/bobber_stare_down2.jpg" border=0>


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The Artsmentor

"Painting is easy when you don't know how, but very difficult when you do!" Edgar Degas



[This message has been edited by lseiler (edited March 22, 2001).]

leesmith
03-23-2001, 09:12 AM
Beautiful work Larry!

I love acrylics too, but want to try oils, Helen Van Wyk always talked about the happy accidents that occurred with the oils blending. She loved to use large brushes. I am so sorry she is not still alive; a wonderful teacher she was. She used acrylics for underpainting the entire subject in black and white values then used oils to glaze colors over.

I love acrylics for all the reasons you do. I've never yet pitched a canvas. I love being able to thin them for just a slight tint when trying to do delicate passages such as shadows in a child's portrait and to correct a passage whose color is not quite right. See through glazes or opaque application or impasto, acrylics do it all. The absolute best thing is the quick dry.

ArtyHelen
03-23-2001, 09:20 AM
WOW. Two replies, a quick look at your web site, Larry, and I'm sold! http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/smile.gif

I've even seen the Galeria ones at the local art shop, so that's great!

I suppose when I've bought them I can come back here and get advice on what colours to mix for skin tones, etc? Maybe I should try painting something other than a portrait first though... it's just that nothing holds my attention for as long as portraits!

Yours are incredible, Larry!

Thanx for your replies, Larry and leesmith!

Helen

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http://pencilartist.50megs.com

ArtyHelen
03-27-2001, 05:07 AM
I bought some paints yesterday and finished my first acrylic portrait today! I've put it here:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/Forum21/HTML/003517.html

I had great fun doing it, and can't wait to learn more as I go along! http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

Helen

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Visit me!
http://pencilartist.50megs.com

VictoriaS
03-27-2001, 10:52 AM
Good work, Helen!

So, how do you like acrylics? While I am still using watercolors and oils from time to time, I think acrylics are my favorite medium now.

Victoria

ArtyHelen
03-27-2001, 10:59 AM
I love them, Victoria! http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

The watercolors lacked control for the way I like to work. Oils - I've never tried, and they wouldn't be too convenient for me in a small flat with an inquisitive 8 year old. http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/smile.gif So acrylics seemed a better idea as a starting point for learning to paint. I already feel kind of familiar with them, having done just one painting! So I hope I continue to enjoy them this much! http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/smile.gif

Thanx for looking! http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/smile.gif

Helen

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http://pencilartist.50megs.com

LDianeJohnson
03-27-2001, 04:21 PM
Helen,

I think you found a "home" in acrylics. This first piece is a fabulous start. Enjoy exploring!

Diane

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L. Diane Johnson (http://www.LDianeJohnson.com/) NAPA, PSA
Plein Air Workshops (http://www.LDianeJohnson.com/workshops/)

LarrySeiler
03-27-2001, 08:41 PM
Looks good!! Your portrait that is! I think you are well on your way!

-Larry

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The Artsmentor

"Painting is easy when you don't know how, but very difficult when you do!" Edgar Degas

ArtyHelen
03-28-2001, 08:29 AM
Thanx so much, Larry and Diane! http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

Helen

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http://pencilartist.50megs.com

tammy
03-29-2001, 07:29 PM
Its funny. I did Acrylic mostly for 13 yrs, tried Oil this year and a half and now for the last few days have done nothing but Acrylic again. I guess old habits die hard.
I think I really like how you can treat Acrylic like watercolor without using watercolor paper. Now that I've done Oil, I don't like the fast drying time of Acrylic and they don't blend as well as Oil, but you can help that with retarders and stuff as the people above have said. Have fun most of all.

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Don't worry, its gonna be all right....
Tammy's Home for Artists (http://tammy.artistnation.com)

Keith Russell
03-30-2001, 08:32 PM
Greetings;

Although there are airbrush artists who use oil in their airbrushes, there has never been a ready-made oil paint to use in airbrushing.

There have been airbrush-ready acrylic paints for about twenty years.

Acrylic paints dry almost instantly when applied with airbrush to porous or semi-porous surfaces--which is perfect, since I hate waiting, before I can apply the next layer of frisket.

Acrylics also clean up with a relatively easy to use ammonia and water mix. Oils take heavy solvents, with many more risks--and expense.

Keith.

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Keith Russell
Synthetic Sky Studios
Science Fiction Fine Art
[email protected]
artkc.com/russelk.htm

Sumafra
03-30-2001, 09:40 PM
I gave up on oils years ago. Then I did watercolours for a few years, still do once in a while. But since I discovered acrylics they are my favourite. I use Golden Fluid Acrylics, they come in a bottle. I water them down and use them like watercolours, ie transparently and on paper. Except that I find acrylics easier to use, to manipulate, to spread on the paper.
Here is one I finished just last week:
<IMG SRC="http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/30-Mar-2001/Lily_lores.JPG" border=0>

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Suzette
"Art, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder" www.geocities.com/suzettefram (http://www.geocities.com/suzettefram)

[This message has been edited by Sumafra (edited March 30, 2001).]