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draggingsticks
06-02-2011, 09:35 PM
hi there, i have painted in oils for 12 years. i am thinking of switching to acrylics for easier clean up, less toxic, etc. I am really scared to switch, basically worried that i will suck at them. i was checking some of the brands out and seen the golden open ones and was curious about them since they had a longer drying time. any help would be awesome, where to begin etc. thanks.
here is my website to see what i do in oils. thanks
keith
www.keithwjohnson.com (http://www.keithwjohnson.com)

Artybo
06-03-2011, 08:50 AM
I was an oil painter and switched to Golden Opens and love them. It took only a tiny bit of practice to get the idea of working with them. I would suggest giving them a try with just a couple of colors, that way if you don't like them your investment is not astronomical.

ShannonTeague
06-03-2011, 09:46 AM
That's what I'm doing. I'm coming over from oils as well. I have a few tubes coming in the mail along with the mediums. I'm really looking forward to trying them out.

draggingsticks
06-03-2011, 10:01 AM
I would love to see your work in oil and then in the acrylic to see the difference if your up to it.

ShannonTeague
06-03-2011, 10:35 AM
I just ordered my paints today so it's probably going to be the middle of next week or later before I get them but once I get my first Open painting done I'll post them. I've worked primarily on portraits up to this point so that'll probably be the first thing I tackle.

draggingsticks
06-03-2011, 10:41 AM
awesome, i cant wait to see.

Einion
06-03-2011, 10:54 AM
i am thinking of switching to oils for easier clean up, less toxic, etc.
Just a bit on this: oil painting doesn't have to be more toxic, although the low-odour thinners ('OMS') are significantly safer than turps and most regular mineral spirits and can be used for this purpose it is possible to paint and clean up without any recourse to organic solvents. It does require some forward planning and possibly modifications to painting technique since anything that would normally rely on dilution in the normal sense is no longer possible.

I am really scared to switch, basically worried that i will suck at them.
Some nervousness is entirely appropriate :) Acrylics are noted for being a medium with a very steep learning curve and particularly if you come from a background of slow-drying paints their typical drying times can be a big shock. There are numerous previous threads on starting with acrylics and acrylics v. oils that would be worth looking at for more specifics.

i was checking some of the brands out and seen the golden open ones and was curious about them since they had a longer drying time.
A few prior threads on these and the Atelier Interactives as well.

One thing to note in relation to acrylics in comparison to oils is the lower pigmentation. This can be quite significant to some people and the Golden Opens have been noted to be a bit weaker than even regular acrylics so the contrast could be greater still.

Einion

draggingsticks
06-03-2011, 01:50 PM
thanks, the more i think about it the more i am to stay with oils,

OkeeKat
06-04-2011, 10:06 PM
I love acrylics, I did two paintings in oils. on my FB you can view the oils album, But I am more comfortable with acrylics.
Its all a personal choice what you get used to doing and getting the feel for each.
The acrylics dont smell and make as much of a mess as acrylics and much easier clean up.
I saw your website and love your work.
Some people do say the golden opens and the interactives dont dry as fast as others. I started with Liquitex and totally enjoy it and used to how it handles.. Keeping it moist as I work and never have a problem with drying, so much easier to go over an area you just worked again and cover well.
It just takes practice I guess if your willing to give it a try.
I think you might enjoy it, dont give in till you've tried it!! Good luck!

idylbrush
06-04-2011, 10:57 PM
Fear is a nasty little dog whose bark is meaner than its bite it seems. Don't let the name acrylics overwhelm your willingness to try them.

MrsG_SoCal
06-04-2011, 10:58 PM
Totally agree Kathie. It is all a matter of what you are used to and have worked with. I find oils much harder to work with since I have only used them a couple of times. Those times I find myself frustrated with the looooong dry time.

I'm sticking with acrylics, but it is totally a matter of choice - and practice. :D

gotpaint
06-05-2011, 03:33 AM
This is the first time I've posted but felt I really ought to jump in! I've been an oil painter for 20 years and over the last year developed some health issues that seemed to be directly related to the oils. I was devastated and the idea of painting in acrylics totally undid me. BUT, since I wanted to keep on painting I decided to take the plunge and just try to be open-minded. So, I started in January. I went directly to the Winsor Newton Artists' acrylics with their Flow Improver. Well, turns out that things are not so dire afterall. It's a new world but I find I'm getting more and more able to work with the acrylics in a way that sometimes duplicates what I did in oils. I'm not saying that I'm completely won over, but hey, I'm really enjoying the fast drying time (who would have guessed), glazing works great, you can blend with acrylics (didn't I hear somewhere that that wasn't possible). So, all and all the last five months have been a great time taking the leap. I love WN acrylics, they don't change color when they dry -- but, downside, there aren't as many colors as with say Liquitex. One other note, I found a great acrylic mixing guide from WN by John Barber. Okay, that's it. Have fun!

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 03:40 PM
I use winsor newton artist oil color, what brand acrylic would be the closest to that brand? the winsor newton acrylic line? or another. what other materials would i need? would i need to get new brushes since i used my brushes in oils already?

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 03:41 PM
I want something that has strong color and have heard that acrylics doesnt have the color strength or depth as oil. what about water soluable oils?

idylbrush
06-06-2011, 03:47 PM
Not unlike oils, acrylics take time and patience to find what is going to work best for you. There are no magic bullets. Buy a tube of this and that and see what is best for you.

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 03:51 PM
I want something that has strong color and have heard that acrylics doesnt have the color strength or depth as oil.

I don't feel that's true at all. Golden heavy body has very very powerful pigment saturation. It's like using car paint for me.

The only difference between Acrylics and oil for me has been that I learned to work much much faster with Acrylics, you're forced to do this. Unless you use Open Acrylics, but I hear the pigment saturation is a bett less for Open, even though I haven't tested this myself so I can't confirm this is true.

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 03:55 PM
is the golden heavy body a thick paint?

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 03:57 PM
is the golden heavy body a thick paint?
It's pretty thick yeah, it doesn't run at all like water paints or Golden fluids.

If you want fluid paints you should look at Golden fluids, ppl use it for airbrush and stuff.

It dries fast though, the best way to stop that is to use water and work fast. I have the Golden retarder and it works if you film is thick, but water works better.

Also, you can mix Golden OPEN, with Golden Heavy Body, no problem, you will get the drying time you like with that.

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 03:58 PM
what is the drying time for acrylics?

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 04:00 PM
what is the drying time for acrylics?
For a normal film it's 5 minutes or less.

Golden OPEN has a max drying time of 6 hours for a normal film.

If you mix OPEN with heavy body you can get the drying time you like. OPEN was too slow for me, Heavy body too fast, so I mix or sometimes I use a spray bottle (like for flower) to keep my paint wet.

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 04:02 PM
i am ready some a thread acrylic vs oil, artists talking about them, i wander what art buyers think, that would be very important too.

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 04:03 PM
Oh, and I'm daily whining to Golden to include MARS BLACK to their OPEN paints. They told me they can get any color from Heavy Body to OPEN so you can mix, the only reason (some) colors are in Heavy Body but not in the OPEN gamma is because of demand. I have found every major color from body to be available in OPEN too.

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 04:04 PM
wow 5 minutes is pretty fast, what do you do when you lay out your colors, wouldnt they dry up. I have a palette full of paint that has been setting out for a few days and most of the colors are still wet.

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 04:05 PM
i am ready some a thread acrylic vs oil, artists talking about them, i wander what art buyers think, that would be very important too.

I think it's just the way people think. People still think oil is 'the standard' or whatever. I feel it's not, the standard is now both Acrylics and Oil. Acrylics has proven to withstand time, Acrylics is used to restore oil paintings daily, it has heavy pigment saturation.

The only negative, is the drying time, but you really do learn to work around this, and you actually learn to work faster, which is (imo) good. Acrylics gives you an extra challenge, but that challenge eventually increases your productivity.

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 04:06 PM
i was thinking that you had 30 minutes with acrylics, five minutes is scary, could you use a mist bottle to keep spraying it.

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 04:07 PM
wow 5 minutes is pretty fast, what do you do when you lay out your colors, wouldnt they dry up. I have a palette full of paint that has been setting out for a few days and most of the colors are still wet.

I work in segments on the canvas, if I work on a big canvas I will work in an Alla Prima way, I don't use layers in acrylics, you can't if you want to keep the film open.

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 04:08 PM
ye i am so tired of taking 3 months to finish a painting. I think as soon as i finish the oil paintings i am working on i will make the switch. i think its for the better.

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 04:08 PM
i was thinking that you had 30 minutes with acrylics, five minutes is scary, could you use a mist bottle to keep spraying it.

Kinda depends on the film too, if you film is thick it increases drying time a lot. I work with a pretty thin film.

It also depends where you work, if you work in the summer it will greatly reduce drying time. Some people use one of those machines to keep the air moist, it increases drying time.

You can also use a flower spray bottle, just find one with a tiny muzzle and keep your canvas moist.

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 04:11 PM
http://www.goldenpaints.com/technicaldata/drying.php

This should give you a lot or actual info on drying times, straight from Golden.

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 04:12 PM
do you have a website to check your work out?

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 04:17 PM
Like a personal site? No, you can click on my name and search for threads I started though. I'm still going to school here, I don't feel I'm good enough to show off my stuff on a personal site.

Dcam
06-06-2011, 04:17 PM
Keith: Check out some of the fabulous works by our acrylic friends here and also the latest art periodicals. American Artist, International artist, The Artist's Magazine. It is getting hard to tell the difference between an oil and an acrylic. Acrylics will grow on you. It takes some skill and you have to make fast decisions. Funny, when you do acrylics for a while and you go back to oils......you can oil paint....BETTER.

Have fun. derek:)

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 04:25 PM
You can ask questions directly to Golden on this section too:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=483

Seven, who answers our questions, is really knowledgeable and cool.

Other brands have their section too.

Raymo
06-06-2011, 04:27 PM
I think once you start using acrylics and their ease of clean up, youll be sold. I love my acrylics and being able to get my fingers involved to adjust a stroke or two. Everything just washes right off. I bet the old masters would have loved them.

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 04:28 PM
do you know if i have to switch out brushes since they have been used in oils?

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 04:29 PM
@raymo, i know what you mean with clean up. oils is such a paint, i have ruined some brushes and several wooden palettes because i didnt feel like cleaning up, water would be so much easier.

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 04:31 PM
I think once you start using acrylics and their ease of clean up, youll be sold. I love my acrylics and being able to get my fingers involved to adjust a stroke or two. Everything just washes right off. I bet the old masters would have loved them.

I think so too, especially the messy ones. I have acrylics on my Canon and on my Keyboard, since Acrylics and the binder are non-toxic (unless you eat it!), messing up is not a problem.

The only paints in Acrylics you need to be careful off are of course the cadmiums and the paints like carbon black (for inhalation issues).

But I replaced all my cadmiums with pyrolle and phthalos.

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 04:32 PM
do you know if i have to switch out brushes since they have been used in oils?

Any oil brush will work with acrylics, although I noticed that most people tend to prefer more bristle brushes for acrylics. I have a set of synthetic soft and bristle brushes, I like both.

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 04:38 PM
Also, about brushes, you can't just leave your brush out in the open with acrylics, it needs to be in water the whole time unless you paint or the acrylics will stick to the hairs in minutes. Just keep a bottle /cup / whatever of water next to you and put your brush in it and it's fine.

Raymo
06-06-2011, 04:43 PM
since Acrylics and the binder are non-toxic (unless you eat it!)

I have a gal friend that used to toll paint and if she made a bad stroke she would lick it off the surface before it dried....:lol:....I told her she was a freak. She said it was easier than putting everything down and getting a wet cloth. :rolleyes:

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 04:44 PM
lol

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 04:45 PM
good thing she didnt use oils

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 04:58 PM
Keith: Check out some of the fabulous works by our acrylic friends here and also the latest art periodicals. American Artist, International artist, The Artist's Magazine. It is getting hard to tell the difference between an oil and an acrylic.
http://www.goldenpaints.com/artist/wap/artist.php?uid=64 Check her out too, she lives a few miles from me and people like her made me switch.

I think the only reason that acrylics has a tendency to have less high-end masters is because the medium is much newer and many of the older good painters are too set in their ways to change at this point. I think it has nothing to do with the medium itself.

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 05:08 PM
here is mine, www.keithwjohnson.com

Dcam
06-06-2011, 05:14 PM
Nice talking to you Keith:thumbsup:

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 05:24 PM
thanks, dcam

ShannonTeague
06-06-2011, 06:09 PM
do you know if i have to switch out brushes since they have been used in oils?

You don't have to, as long as you clean your brushes well between sessions. I have brushes that I've used for both oil and acrylic painting. One thing to keep in mind though is that if you are using a lot of water to thin your acrylics down you might want to make sure you are using synthetic brushes, since natural hog hair bristle doesn't always perform well with water. But if you are using your acrylics straight from the tube, or with a medium it's no problem.

Golden Heavy Body is a nicely thick paint. I'd compare it to some of the looser oils like Grumbacher. However, Golden also has a large range of gel mediums that can make the paint even thicker. Going to the Golden site is really worth a trip because there's a lot of information there. They're a very helpful company.

Acrylics can be kind of scary after oils, I know the feeling. If you are using a very thin application, you aren't going to have hardly any time at all before it is touch dry. The film can be partially reactivated with water or to a lesser extent, medium. The thicker your application, the more time you'll have before it goes touch dry. So a lot depends on your painting style.

I've found the quick drying time a little too fast for my tastes which is why I'm trying out Golden Open. I'm anticipating that it'll be just what I'm looking for. In a few days I'll know for sure. From the questions you've been asking, I'd really recommend that you buy a couple of tubes of Golden Open and try it out. You could just get a tube of black and titanium white and play around with it. Wouldn't cost you much more than $10-$12 and it'd be enough for you to decide if it's going to work for you.

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 06:15 PM
thanks shannon

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 06:19 PM
let me know how the open work out for ya

nolartist
06-06-2011, 07:08 PM
i use golden heavy body acrylics exclusively, but have wanted to give water soluable oils a try. You can view my website to see what I've done with golden acrylics.

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 07:13 PM
thanks nolartist

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 08:51 PM
I keep reading that oil paintings are more valuable and last longer, ugh, it just stays in the back of my mind . lol

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 09:08 PM
I keep reading that oil paintings are more valuable and last longer, ugh, it just stays in the back of my mind . lol
Sigh ><, misinformation spreading is everywhere.

http://www.goldenpaints.com/justpaint/jp12article1.php

"The weight of available evidence indicates that acrylics will prove to be more durable than oils, and oils have been around for 500 years. "

Golden also works with musea for restauration of oil painting, that is the musea by choice use acrylics to restore oil paintings instead of oil.

The person who used to live where I live now is a restorateur (SP? only know this word in Dutch) and he uses acrylics too.

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 09:20 PM
Also, read this where Van Gogh's paintings got ruined because oils yellow, while acrylics do not. If he would have had acrylics his paintings would have not been ruined:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2011/feb/14/van-gogh-sunflowers-yellow-paint

The university of Antwerp where they did this research is 2 blocks from here.

The oil gets oxidised and it turns yellow, since Acrylics don't use oil for their binder but a synthetic binder (acrylics) that can't happen.

draggingsticks
06-06-2011, 09:21 PM
thats interesting.

Goldeelocks
06-06-2011, 09:28 PM
Yeah, they have a stack of his oil paints too, once I get my new Canon I'm going to ask if I can take a picture of them, if I have the guts.

BeeCeeEss
06-07-2011, 11:05 PM
do you know if i have to switch out brushes since they have been used in oils?

You can use the same brushes that you used for oil paintings, however, be sure to clean/wash them out VERY WELL before you ever touch them into acrylic paints. Even a slight oily residue left in a brush from previous use with oil paints can cause you a lot of trouble with acrylic painting. You may find the acrylic paints are not adhering to the painting surface as well as they should or they may streak, run, etc. from a bit of oily residue coming off onto your painting. If money is tight, pick a few brushes to try with acrylics and clean the dickens out of them, then clean them some more! In the long run, if you decide to stay with acrylics for a while and maybe go back to oils from time to time, it's best to keep a separate set of brushes for each medium.

Personally, I like using hog bristle brushes with acrylics. Even the tube acrylic paints are not as thick as oil paints, so the bristle brushes going a bit mushy when they get wet isn't such a big issue. In fact, it helps them keep the paint moist on your brushes longer. I also use a variety of other types of brushes for acrylics. It all depends on what I want to do.

Important tips when using acrylic paints are: (1) always pre-wet your brushes with water before you begin using them to paint with acrylics. I dip mine in water then blot off the excess water. If you put an absolutely dry brush into acrylic paint and a little of it dries on the brush, you may never get it out. Acrylics do dry very fast. It's up to you to keep your brushes wet at all times until you are ready to quit painting for the day and wash up all the brushes that you used. Some submerge them in water. I prefer to place the brush tips on a wet sponge set in a shallow tray when they are not in use during a painting session. I rinse out any excess paint first before setting the brush on this sponge tray; (2) the paint can dry on your brush very quickly while you are just holding it and trying to make a decision about what to paint next or how do I mix that color? Dried acrylics can be very hard to get out of a brush.

Re: Keeping acrylic paints from drying out on your palette. There are a number of ways to do this. One of the most popular is using something called a Sta-Wet Palette. If you do a search on this forum, you should be able to come up with a number of threads that explain the Sta-Wet Palette system, so I won't duplicate it here. Another way is to fold up some paper towels into strips, dunk them in water, squeeze out the excess water and place them down on your palette (something like a porcelain butcher's tray works well as a palette for acrylics). Then squeeze out your acrylic paints onto the damp paper towels. Keep a fine mist spray bottle handy and spritz your paints every so often to keep them from drying out.

The Golden Open paints are a nice way to try acrylics but their pigment load is less than regular acrylics--and definitely less than oils. I've tried them and prefer my regular acrylics (I use Golden Heavy Body and Golden Fluid Acrylics). But I find the Golden Open Gel Medium very handy when used with my regular acrylics. Even with the Golden Open Acrylics, they will still dry lots faster than oil paints do. Thin applications dry faster than thicker ones do, too.

The type of surface you paint on will greatly affect how quickly the paint dries. If you paint on watercolor paper, for instance, it is very absorbent and your paints will dry out SUPER FAST! If you paint on a gessoed canvas or board, your paints won't dry out so fast--but it will still be very fast compared to oils. Get used to the idea that you won't have those long, long blending times that you enjoyed with oil paints. And you'll have to learn other methods to get those soft blends with fast-drying acrylics.

The toxicity issue with oil paints is mainly the solvents you use to thin paints and clean your brushes. There are ways to minimalize this risk as Einion has already mentioned. The ground pigments used in oil paints are basically the same used for other types of paints such as acrylics, watercolors, etc. Cadmium or Cobalt colors are still just as toxic when used in acrylic paints as they are in oils. Many paint manufacturers have chosen to eliminate these toxic pigments from their paint lines and try to duplicate their hues with other pigment mixtures. The key is to avoid getting paint on your skin and to avoid breathing in particulates from the painting process. If you thin acrylic paints to use in a spraying device like an air brush or spray bottle, or want to use a spatter technique, you are at risk of inhaling some of the airborne droplets of paint unless you wear a proper mask. Don't be lulled into thinking that the acrylic paints are completely harmless just because you don't have to use smelly solvents to clean up with.

I started out as an oil painter, then switched to acrylics many years ago. Frankly, I like to switch back and forth from time to time because I get bored with one medium after a while and want to work in another for a while. At the moment, I'm thinking of going back to oils for a while. But I'm sure I'll want to come back to acrylics after a long while doing oils.

Below, I'm going to post some other tips for folks who want to try acrylics after working in other mediums. I hope you find them helpful (sorry for the long-winded post).

Beverly


------------------------------------------------------

Some additional tips:

RE: Frustrations for beginning acrylic painters -- crossing over from other mediums

I think we've all been there when we started out with acrylics. I'm a former oil painter and I struggled for years to learn to get those nice soft edges and blends with acrylics. Unfortunately, back then I didn't have a terrific resource like the folks here at Wet Canvas to get advice from.

A lot depends on how you like to paint with acrylics, for example, since you were working with watercolors, do you like to thin down your acrylics into transparent washes and use them like watercolors? Or do you like to paint with opaque, thicker paints in acrylics?

The surface you paint upon also can determine what methods to use for blending your acrylics.

I often paint on watercolor paper, but I also use illustration board or canvas.

When I'm painting on watercolor paper, I usually begin with thin washes of transparent color. As the painting progresses, I often use thicker acrylics--anything from semi-transparent to fully opaque passages. I find that it helps a great deal to pre-wet my paper in the areas where I will be applying the paint. This will help to slow down acrylic's fast-drying traits. I also keep a clean, damp brush handy to do a quick softening of my edges before they dry. Once dry, the acrylics can't be rewetted, as you undoubtedly have discovered. I have found soft, fine-haired filbert brushes are especially good for doing these edge softening strokes, but you can use whatever type and style of brush that works for you. I'm right handed so I hold my damp blending brush in my left hand so it's ready for instant use. Even with the paper pre-wetted, the paints can still dry very quickly, so it's best to be prepared!

You can soften edges on heavier paints on watercolor paper this same way. Just keep the blending brush clean and damp--ready at a moment's notice. Rinse it clean immediately after each use so it's ready again when you need it. A little practice will give you the hang of this and a feel for how much time you have to work.

Another tip: it helps to have your colors premixed and ready to apply when you need to blend colors because your paints will dry so quickly once you've applied them to the painting surface that you don't usually have enough time to mix up the next color you need.

There are other handy methods for making soft blends with acrylics that work no matter what surface you are painting on. One is scumbling. You load a small amount of paint onto a brush and wipe most of it off onto a piece of scrap paper or paper towels. Then rub just the tips of the brush hairs or bristles in circular motions on your painting surface. Use a light touch. This method applies small amounts of paint that you can gradually spread out like a little transparent "cloud" of paint where you need it. More than one color can be applied over the dried layer of paint to get a blend of colors. The more you go over the scumbled area, the more opaque the paint will become. I find hog bristle brushes very good for this technique, especially old, badly worn brushes. Those are the best kind!

By the way, surfaces with some texture, like canvas or cold pressed watercolor paper, will actually help achieve good scumbling blends. I never liked to paint with acrylics on really smooth, slick surfaces.

Another method for softly blending one area into another is to paint the two colors (or tones) next to each other, then make a blend of the two colors (or tones). Use that blend of colors to do a slight scumble over the dividing line between the two colors. You can use a small brush to do this and make tiny x-shaped strokes back and forth over the area that needs blending. You can go over it as many times as you need to so that you will get a soft blend. If you need the blended area to be wider, you can mix different blends of these colors and keep applying them on either side of the first blend to get the blended area softened out over a wider area. This technique is especially helpful for softening edges between an object in the foreground and the background color. It works beautifully!

There are also some products that will give you a bit more blending time with your paint. I'll mention one I really love: Golden Open Gel Medium. I sometimes blend it with my paints (just a little) or I will brush it onto a pre-wetted surface and paint into it with my paints.

There are also retarders for use with acrylics, but I never recommend them to anyone. I find they make my paints feel like glue! I hate them. And you have to be very careful not to use too much or your paints may never dry. I think it best to avoid using retarders and find other ways to achieve soft blends. But that is my personal opinion.

I don't know if I explained these methods very well, but I hope it helps. I used to hate acrylics because I wanted them to behave like oil paints with all that long, slow blending time that oils give you. But I had to learn the hard way that acrylics would never work like oils and I had to learn to appreciate their own special set of characteristics. Now I like them for those same traits that used to frustrate me when I first began using them.

Just be prepared to put some time in with a lot of practicing and scrap paper or canvas to find the methods that work best for you. I hope you stick with acrylics. They really are rewarding once you can "make friends with them."

Horsa
06-09-2011, 12:51 PM
I am reading this thread with interest as I am thinking about adding acrylics to my bag of tricks.

A 5 minute working time sounds like a positively glacial drying time after doing sumi-e. The ink is fixed almost before it touches the paper, and there is no going back over it to correct a mistake.

I have been working mostly in watercolours and am intrigued by the idea of simply painting over the bits that don't work the first time. I can "correct" watercolour to some extent, but not as much as simply painting over.

Einion
06-09-2011, 03:36 PM
I use winsor newton artist oil color, what brand acrylic would be the closest to that brand?
That's not an easy question to answer, and some people will tell you that none of them are - oil paint and acrylic are so very different in certain ways that there's no acrylic paint that's truly like an oil paint in the way it feels and behaves (see previous point about pigmentation), although individual standards/fussiness does play a part in how close they seem to different people.

what other materials would i need? would i need to get new brushes since i used my brushes in oils already?
A couple of jars for water, a stainless-steel or nickel-plated palette or painting knife for mixing and a sheet of glass, glazed tile or piece of Perspex for mixing on. Maybe a stay-wet palette (these can be made at home using common household materials, see prior threads for details).

If you clean your existing brushes thoroughly they'll be fine, but you may find that brushes of a different type work better for acrylic paint. Because you're using paint that contains water and will be rinsing them in water as you work natural bristle brushes soften, so synthetic equivalents can work better.

I want something that has strong color and have heard that acrylics doesnt have the color strength or depth as oil. what about water soluable oils?
That second bit is basically just a bad rep, the reality is quite different. If anything, the common complaint with new users is that they're too colourful.

I wouldn't recommend water-miscible oils for various reasons.

is the golden heavy body a thick paint?
Not in the way you'll be used to from oils - that's one of the differences I allude to above.

As I mention in my previous post, there are numerous existing threads that are worth looking at for more specifics; you'll find many of the questions you've asked here along with previous answers to them.

Einion

draggingsticks
06-09-2011, 05:15 PM
thanks for the info about toxicity of acrylics, so basically, they are the same except for the oil clean up with turp. i use linseed oil to thin my paint. so if that is the case i will prob just stick with oils. the drying time sounds nice sometimes but i like taking my time, and yesterday i painted and left my palette out over night and the paint was still good to go for me to paint today.

FreeOrchid84
06-09-2011, 05:41 PM
thanks, the more i think about it the more i am to stay with oils,

Have you thought about switching from traditional oils to a water-soluble oil? The switch doesn't have to be to acrylics and some water-soluble oils are quite comparable to oils!

draggingsticks
06-09-2011, 05:53 PM
why wouldnt you use water-oils?



That's not an easy question to answer, and some people will tell you that none of them are - oil paint and acrylic are so very different in certain ways that there's no acrylic paint that's truly like an oil paint in the way it feels and behaves (see previous point about pigmentation), although individual standards/fussiness does play a part in how close they seem to different people.


A couple of jars for water, a stainless-steel or nickel-plated palette or painting knife for mixing and a sheet of glass, glazed tile or piece of Perspex for mixing on. Maybe a stay-wet palette (these can be made at home using common household materials, see prior threads for details).

If you clean your existing brushes thoroughly they'll be fine, but you may find that brushes of a different type work better for acrylic paint. Because you're using paint that contains water and will be rinsing them in water as you work natural bristle brushes soften, so synthetic equivalents can work better.


That second bit is basically just a bad rep, the reality is quite different. If anything, the common complaint with new users is that they're too colourful.

I wouldn't recommend water-miscible oils for various reasons.


Not in the way you'll be used to from oils - that's one of the differences I allude to above.

As I mention in my previous post, there are numerous existing threads that are worth looking at for more specifics; you'll find many of the questions you've asked here along with previous answers to them.

Einion

Einion
06-10-2011, 10:15 AM
why wouldnt you use water-oils?
Water-miscible oils are just a compromise, and provide barely any advantage (some would say NO advantage) over unmodified oil paint, while adding in a few disadvantages just for fun! :)

Lots more discussions on them in the Oil Painting forum.

Einion

ShannonTeague
06-10-2011, 03:13 PM
I'm not sure if anyone would be interested but I did some drying time tests with Golden Open paints and mediums. My results follow. From this bit of testing I can see that using various combinations of Open paints and mediums with Golden AGL and regular acrylic paints really gives you a lot of control over the drying time. That's a big plus for me since I have a lot of regular acrylic paint I'd like to be able to use with extended drying time. Here's my test results.

All applications were in thin layers so any thickness to an application will extend the drying time a good bit from the test results below.

Day 1
Temp about 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

Golden Open paint on un-primed paper
Dry with some tackiness at 15 minutes
Completely dry at 20 minutes

Golden Open paint on bristol board
starting to get tacky at 20 minutes
very tacky at 40 minutes
mostly dry at 45 minutes

Golden Open paint on paper with a primer coat of acrylic paint
some tackiness at 20 minutes
nearly dry at 30 minutes
dry at 40 minutes

Golden Open paint on paper with a primer coat of sludge gesso
very tacky at 20 minutes
mostly dry at 35 minutes

Golden Open paint on primed canvas
After an hour it was still wet. I stopped keeping track there. If I can't get it done in a hour, I shouldn't be painting!


Day 2
Temp about 55-60 degrees Fahrenheit.

I got my Open and other Golden mediums in today so this test will be with various mediums combined with Golden Open and Golden Heavy Body paints. As with the Day 1 test, all applications are in thin layers, and as such, thicker layers will extend the drying time considerably. All tests for this day were done on primed canvas.

Golden Heavy Body Paint with AGL (Acrylics Glazing Liquid)
Mostly dry after 20 minutes. Golden Open thinner easily reactivated the paint at 25 minutes.

Golden Heavy Body Paint with Golden Open Medium
After an hour the paint was tacky but still somewhat workable and remained so at 90 minutes.

Golden Heavy Body Paint with Golden Open Gel Medium
After an hour the paint was tacky but still somewhat workable and remained so at 90 minutes, though it was slightly more workable than the above sample.

Golden Open paint with Golden Open Medium and Open Gel Medium
Both samples were completely wet after 90 minutes and don't show any sign of tackiness. I suspect they would remain so for a good deal longer.

All mixtures on the palette on Day 2 showed no skinning after 90 minutes.

I found these tests quite encouraging since I could get a range of drying times by mixing AGL, Heavy Body Paint, Open paint and Open mediums in different combinations.

I also got to try out some of Golden's standard mediums which I like a lot. They offer a sampler pack of Soft Gel, Regular Gel (semi-gloss), Extra Heavy Gel (matte), Light Molding Paste, Coarse Gel and Clear Tar Gel. All the samples I did with regular acrylics and they were still wet after 90 minutes but that's to be expected I suppose with such heavy applications.

What it's shown me is that between Golden's Heavy Body paints, their Open paints, their normal mediums and their Open mediums you can customize the drying times and viscosity to just about anything you need. I guess you could say I'm definitely a Golden fan now.

Next step for me is to paint a portrait and a few still life's and experiment with drying times to see which I like.

BeeCeeEss
06-10-2011, 09:48 PM
Shannon,

That's a very informative list you provided. The best part is that you can mix and match the regular acrylics and their mediums with the Golden Open acrylics and mediums to find just the right working combination to suit your needs. I think you'll be very happy with them.

Keith,

I hope I didn't discourage you entirely from trying acrylics. They are certainly worthwhile and have many things to recommend them. One of the greatest is their versatility. You can use them like watercolors in transparent washes on watercolor paper or other absorbent surfaces. You can work with semi-transparent applications all the way up to fully opaque applications all in the same painting if you wish. If you find you are still curious, try just getting a tube of white and a tube of black and do some gray-tone studies. The Golden Open acrylics would make it even easier without much of a cash outlay.

There are also ways to maximize your productivity with working in oils. If you can spend months completing one oil painting (as I sometimes do) and if space permits you can work on 2 or 3 paintings at a time. Set one aside to dry a bit, then work on another, etc.

My vote on the water-soluble oils: tried 'em and hated 'em. Just my two cents worth.

I find (traditional) oil painting to be one of the safest of the mediums if you can eliminate the hazardous solvents. The paint itself is basically pigment combined with either linseed oil, walnut oil, or safflower oil (all natural plant products) and then packed into tubes. Using the paint straight from the tube or mixing it with a bit of linseed oil is a very safe way to work. The thing that most drove me away from oil painting was becoming very sensitive to the smell of the oils themselves and especially their smell as the paint was curing. It takes on a rancid smell that I find nearly intolerable. That's what keeps me painting with acrylics.

Both have their merits.

Beverly

draggingsticks
06-10-2011, 10:07 PM
Thanks for your post. I use just linseed oil to thin my paint and i have found a non toxic turp, so i will prob stick with oils. I work on up to 10 paintings at a time, my walls are covered but hey. I just now how they work and love that i don t have to worry about my paint brush drying to the canvas as i apply paint lol. sticking with oils but hey we can still all be friends.

Tammyr67
06-10-2011, 10:27 PM
Time for my 2 cents!

I have been painting in oils since 1979 (started when I was 11) I stuck with that medium exclusively until the folks at Wetcanvas inspired me.

I first tried Golden Open Acrylics and I HATED THEM!!! They got really sticky and nasty (in my opinion) I put the Acrylics away for awhile, figured they just weren't for me.

Then Jerry's had a small Windsor & Newton set for sale really cheap, so I figured I would try them out.

Well I LOVED THEM! They felt good, didn't get sticky, dried super fast. I found I could paint on a stretched canvas (I have always loved the bounce of a stretched canvas) and blend (not as easily as oils) but REALLY blend! The pigment was very similar to my oils (to me anyway) so the only difference was the fast drying time and the water cleanup.

I had someone ask for a PORTRAIT commission that they needed in two weeks! I couldn't do it in oils because of the time it would have taken me, but I was able to finish the painting on time with the W&N Acrylics and THEY LOVED IT.

Now I have the commissions lined up because of that speedy commission.

So my advice is try acrylics, buy them on sale and cheap; find a brand that works for you. It will be worth it!

Oh and I don't mix my brushes. My oil brushes are for oil, my acrylic/watercolor/gouache brushes are separate.

bluefish
06-11-2011, 10:48 AM
back in the late 50s, I found that the Mexican Muralist were using a new type of paint called acrylic....it was difficult at first to find but since I'm in the NYC metro area, I picked some up........never went back to oils.....have been painting in acrylics for +/- 50 years......they don't yellow, crack or fill my lungs with uncertainties......

you couldn't ask for a more diverse medium......before the advent of 'fluid and ink acrylics', we watered down the solid acrylics and painted in WC form....adding gels and calcium carbonate/marble dust allows wonderful pallette knife work....

plesae give them a try and maybe 50 years from now, you'll be telling someone they should give acrylics a try.....

'blue....' :thumbsup:

hummerseeker
06-11-2011, 10:44 PM
I've painted in oils for 30 years and just this past year and a half have dabbled in the acrylics, and I love them. At first I just wanted to see if I could use them instead of oils for the cleanup factor, but I still go to my oils for certain works. I tried to use them like oils at first, since that's what I know, and realized that I had to change my techniques and find ones that work better with the acrylics. Now I can pretty well go back and forth between the two without having to think too much about it.

Personally, I find it easier for some reason to do fine detail with acrylics than with oils, and I do like the faster drying times with the acrylics, and the ease of clean up can't be beat. I do keep separate sets of brushes for oils and acrylics, and I find that I do use the synthetic brushes more for the acrylics and gouache, and use the natural fibers for oils.

In some ways I think my experience using the acrylics has improved my works in oils. I can't explain this other than to say that maybe a light bulb or two went off subconsciously and it reflects now in both. Since I paint in my head before I ever put anything down on paper or canvas, I can get a pretty good idea of which medium I will go with for that particular piece. I guess it's an instinctual thing.

All in all I am really glad I tried the acrylics. Don't be afraid of them. After all, it's just paint.

Oh, and I love the Sta-Wet palette system. It works very well. Also a plastic container the size of the palette with a wet sponge and a tight-fitting lid will keep paint moist enough to save until later in the day if you have to stop your work for a while.