View Full Version : What makes Acrylic do this?

04-30-2001, 11:58 PM
Does anyone know how many times you can layer Acrylic paint on top of itself before it cracks?
I thought you could do it several times with no ill effect and have never had the problem before until lately. I had a painting that I didn't like so I sanded it down and painted over it it but yes it cracked. Any thoughts on why?
It was only about the second or third layer.

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

05-02-2001, 11:12 PM
Only once Tammy

I had a completed piece that was set and I'd used acrylic varnish on it. As I studied it I wasn't happy with part of it so I watered a glaze to mute part of it. Hairline cracks but no lift off. It was on primed untreated hardboard so it should have been very stable. I blamed myself for too thin glaze and dirty water. I kept the piece for about five years and it didn't get any worse, but I threw it away regardless.

Still a mystery I'll watch this post and maybe we'll both learn.

Good Paintin http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/wink.gif


05-03-2001, 12:06 AM
Surprised to learn this, Tammy. How soon after painting did it crack? Did you paint that last layer very thickly (don't know if that would have anything to do with it or not, but it's all I can think of)?


05-03-2001, 01:50 PM
Hi Tammy,

I am not certain either why it would have cracked. Did you re-gesso before painting over the sanded surface? Only a few possibilities I can think of...

- if the paint layer that you applied was very thick on a flexible canvas, it could crack, but acrylic is flexible and still should not crack...

- if the sanded surface was not wiped clean of particles or if it was sanded too smooth the paing could crack...

- if the paint had a higher than 15% amount of retarder or other additive perhaps it could crack...

- if the paint colors themselves were old or are defective in some way the paint could crack.

I have painted in layers for years with no cracking issues, stretching sometimes, but not cracking.

Interesting problem. If you do solve for "x" please let us know of your discovery and solution.


L. Diane Johnson (http://www.LDianeJohnson.com/) NAPA, PSA
2001/2002 Plein Air Workshops (http://www.LDianeJohnson.com/workshops/)