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Old 10-06-2017, 11:22 AM
old_hobbyist old_hobbyist is offline
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Are acrylics akin to house paint?

I have been painting in acrylics for some time. A few years ago I joined a local plein air group. Iíve stuck with acrylics even though several local professionals told me to switch to oils to avoid the rapid drying issue.

Earlier this year I attended the Plein Air Convention [PACE]. The demos and the expo products were essentially for oil painters. During a sit-down with several demonstrators, I asked why acrylics were unacceptable for outdoor painting. The primary reasons were that they fade, crack, decompose, delaminate and flake off.

One demonstrator whose demo at the show sold for $$$ said that he always told his patrons that acrylics are cheap plastics akin to house paint. Another said that customers at the tony galleries where her work hung where astute enough to recognize that acrylics could never be archival.

With all this negativism against this medium Iím about to abandon acrylics.

Any comments?
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Old 10-06-2017, 12:36 PM
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

Hi Jim,
I'm sorry you had such a backlash at the plein air event.

While it is true that only a small amount of people plein air in acrylic, some do and they do it well.

Quote:
The primary reasons were that they fade, crack, decompose, delaminate and flake off.

I disagree with this. Acrylic paint is not especially fragile.

But the fast drying time is extremely challenging outdoors where you already have such an abundance of problem-solving to do. And unlike gouache it doesn't re-open as you know. I think that is the main reason people don't generally use it, not because it is an "inferior substance", because it is not.
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Old 10-06-2017, 12:46 PM
ragtopcircus ragtopcircus is offline
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

I am pretty sure that a friend who does a LOT of large, commissioned murals uses acrylic exclusively. There are certainly pigments to avoid for outdoor works. Some that may be lightfast are sensitive to moisture and/or alkaline surfaces such as concrete and limestone.

That said, I thought plein air was about PAINTING outdoors, not (generally) about exhibiting outdoors (except for murals). Actually, I would hesitate to use oil for a mural unless it could be sheltered long enough to properly cure.

It may be true that galleries and their customers are biased against acrylic. Customers are of little concern to me at the moment though, so I wouldn't know. Oil and acrylic are different, of course, both in handling and optical characteristics. I am working on adding oil to my repertoire, but not to the exclusion of acrylic.
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Old 10-06-2017, 12:50 PM
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

If Acrylic is non-archival plastic, then why all those oil paint artists use it as an acrylic primer for all their oil paint masterpieces? They use 5-6 layers of their preferable GAC-100 acrylic gesso even to prepare toilet paper for oil painting purpose! They use their GAC-100 on wooden panels, Aluminum, Dibond, Copper clad panels, Plywood and MDF However, they are thinking, that GAC-100 is more solid and archival over time than whole solar system.

I think, that oil paint is so poor and chemically unstable, that it will always crack and delaminate. I hate acrylic paint, but to save my own oil paintings I do compromise. I added acrylic paint into oil paint to make my oil paint to be more flexible, less yellow, less shrinkable and less sink-in material. I add plastic into oil but nobody can say how much or where it was added into my paintings.
I also use acrylic warnish instead of Dammar varnish to add into my painting mediums. And I use Alkyd plastic with Titanium White. Local Professionals will be glad to see how my paintings once will turn into oleo-plastic dust over time. They will try to sit on river coast to watch my decomposed paintings floating into waves in the far future.

Last edited by Gigalot : 10-06-2017 at 01:22 PM.
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Old 10-06-2017, 01:35 PM
cb3 cb3 is offline
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

Acrylics are NOT a fragile medium. The problem OR benefit is the faster drying time over oils. Both are wonderful, but have different handling characteristics.

Golden Open is an acrylic line that stay open longer. Where I live its hot as heck! Oils make more sense when paint outdoors.

Oil paints are still the king of the painting mediums as far a collectors goes. People ask for that more than acrylics because that what they know - they are less familiar with Acrylics so SOME look down on it. They are both great mediums.

I've seen people love a painting thinking its oils, but think less of it when they find out its acrylic. Now its subpar.
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Old 10-06-2017, 02:06 PM
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

A technical article by Golden

http://www.justpaint.org/aspects-of-...artist-paints/

Old-hobbyist, I know that you have been posting acrylics here for 10 years. I have a couple that I painted 40 years ago. I suspect that is just the tip of the iceberg.

I like to drift back and forth between mediums and am trying acrylics again at this time. I will say that I enjoy the open time with oils. However, I love the way that you can wait a short amount of time and make major adjustments to acrylic paintings.

I have posted a couple Golden Open Paintings here recently and enjoyed doing them. They have a very different feel than oils. I like both.

Old Hobbyist, I know that you are accomplished with acrylics. You could certainly handle the switch. I am not sure why you would want to do so.

Gary
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Old 10-06-2017, 02:34 PM
p_nathan p_nathan is offline
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

I think house paint is an acrylic base. But! "acrylic" is a pretty broad term.
Too, artists tend to select pigments that are long-term lightfast.

Golden has an essay on mural pigments....

http://www.justpaint.org/selecting-t...ural-pigments/

And a house paint company provides an essay on house paint composition....

https://www.dunnedwards.com/colors/s...-in-your-paint
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Old 10-06-2017, 02:56 PM
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

It is amazing how ill informed some folks can be. Perhaps the folks at your convention meant well, but they are wrong with pretty much everything they said - so there is absolutely no reason to be concerned about your acrylic paintings. At least as far as I know.

I don't paint plein air, but if I did I would use acrylics. Because they dry fast and you can use water to thin and clean. As far as the fast drying time, rapid drying is no more an "issue" than slow drying. They are different characteristics that have various pluses and minuses.

Acrylics haven't been around for centuries as oil paintings have been, so no one can know what might happen to them after a hundred or more years, but I haven't seen any evidence that they are any more fragile than oil paintings, which also, by the way, can fade, crack, delaminate and flake off!

I would completely ignore what those folks said - and, if you so desire, go back and educate them. They seem to need it!

Don
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Old 10-06-2017, 04:54 PM
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

Houses are usually painted with "LATEX" paint.
Artists use "acrylic" paints.
http://www.differencebetween.net/obj...d-latex-paint/
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Old 10-06-2017, 05:12 PM
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sidbledsoe sidbledsoe is offline
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

Quote:
Originally Posted by old_hobbyist
I have been painting in acrylics for some time. A few years ago I joined a local plein air group. Iíve stuck with acrylics even though several local professionals told me to switch to oils to avoid the rapid drying issue.

Earlier this year I attended the Plein Air Convention [PACE]. The demos and the expo products were essentially for oil painters. During a sit-down with several demonstrators, I asked why acrylics were unacceptable for outdoor painting. The primary reasons were that they fade, crack, decompose, delaminate and flake off.

One demonstrator whose demo at the show sold for $$$ said that he always told his patrons that acrylics are cheap plastics akin to house paint. Another said that customers at the tony galleries where her work hung where astute enough to recognize that acrylics could never be archival.

With all this negativism against this medium Iím about to abandon acrylics.

Any comments?
The very best scientific evidence is that acrylics are, and in the long term, will be far more durable and "archival" than oil paints which have proven to be problematic at best.
Oil paint is in fact, oil paint too, and just as akin. Artist type oil paints will not hold up outdoors on houses like either acrylics or alkyds.

Do not listen to the oil paint adoring, acrylic paint hating, haters, it is simply foolish.
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Last edited by sidbledsoe : 10-06-2017 at 05:14 PM.
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Old 10-06-2017, 05:22 PM
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

Quote Sid:
Do not listen to the oil paint adoring, acrylic paint hating, haters, it is simply foolish.

I could not have said it better.

derek
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Old 10-06-2017, 06:49 PM
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

Acrylic paint is fool's oil paint. The working properties of Acrylic is awful! It wean from the normal use of paint, after acrylic, people will never reach proper technique because they will be trapped into easy impasto or "fast drying" dead end. Acrylic paint teach us to apply paint layer on paint layer to correct mistakes which can't be corrected. That "fool's multilayered technique" is nothing when compared with real oil paint technique. Painting process turns into chaotic conglomeration of meaningless numerous layers of paint. After that chaotic teaching, any oil painting did with such attempts will be deteriorated and decomposed.
Acrylic is the worst paint for artists who will try to study serious oil painting after acrylic mess.
But acrylic chemistry is superior to oil chemistry. 70 years of acrylic history is a history of perfection and stability. Except varnishing and dust resistance. It is problematic to re-varnish acrylic and it is non-removable trouble.

Last edited by Gigalot : 10-06-2017 at 06:51 PM.
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Old 10-06-2017, 07:22 PM
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

I'm surely not much of an acrylic "enthusiast", primarily because I can't tolerate their fast-drying, nor can I abide the differences in color between their wet state, and their dry state! The fact that they dry to a different value than wet REALLY drove me nuts, and I could not effectively deal with that characteristic, because I found it impossible to match a fresh color to one that had already dried upon my canvas. With oils, I can easily do that.

However, as much as I detest working with acrylic paint, I truly see nothing wrong with their appearance, nor their longevity. Layering of acrylics is nothing compared to the layering I perform on most of my oil paintings, so that is not any sort of negative characteristic, at all, in my opinion.

Acrylic paintings can be effectively varnished using the same type of varnish as that recommended for oil paintings.

So....although I choose not to work with acrylic paints, as far as I am aware, they can be made to appear quite similar to oil paintings, and their longevity should be quite appropriate, as well.
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Old 10-06-2017, 10:32 PM
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

Bill I respect your opinion and thanks for your mature and knowledgeable reply.
Unlike the vitriol and insulting gibberish I hear from those who hate acrylics, you are a gentleman.
It takes years to learn how to use acrylics properly and some get quite good at it to the point where the process is almost the same as working with oils. I have been quite successful in both mediums. I have animosity for neither.

Last edited by Dcam : 10-06-2017 at 10:42 PM.
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Old 10-06-2017, 11:06 PM
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Re: Are acrylics akin to house paint?

I think that if it's reasonably archival (which acrylics are) and gives you the results you want, go ahead and use it no matter what anyone else thinks. Every art medium has its benefits and limitations.

Anyone disapproving of acrylics would be truly horrified to discover that there are artists using actual house paint for their paintings. I recently happened across two of them online, Casey Vogt and Abel Pracas.
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