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Topic: Adventures with Acrylic Paint Pouring  (Read 1835 times)
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craftADDchick
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« on: August 21, 2018 10:16:59 AM »


My sister and I had planned a trip to Quebec, but it fell through. Since we both had the weekend free, we thought it would be fun to try a technique that was new to the both of us. We hit the dollar store for most of the supplies (based on this video), dug through my sister's rather large collection of acrylic paints, and got started!

I wanted to make a little series of pieces that would match my bathroom, so I picked a series of colors for that:



I poured a little of each into a little paper cup, and thinned them all with a bit of Mod Podge (per the video I linked above). I then added some 3-in-1 oil to each cup and stirred it in.



Next, because I had 3 little canvases, I poured layers of each color into 3 separate cups (1 cup per canvas).




Then, I poured the contents of a cup onto a canvas, tilting the canvas to get coverage (the paint brush was for spots I missed... although there are still a few places that ended up with the white canvas still showing). We used wax paper lined cookie sheets, and cookie racks from the dollar store. My cookie rack was a little warped, but I had also bought a level (again, at the dollar store), so I used some popsicle sticks as shims to level the canvases out.



We left them overnight to dry (while we made cheese), and this was my first result:



We got a bit of cracking (called "crazing," I learned) and realized that we had A) probably used too much paint and B) dried them too quickly. And, if you notice, we didn't get any of the cool "cells" that we expected.

We did a little more research (using this video {we learned how to get cells}, this video {we learned what "crazing" is} and this video {we learned how to slow the drying to recuce crazing})

We made a trip to Home Depot to get some butane for my sister's torch, and picked up a spray can of silicone-based lubricant.

We also learned that you should use only a few colors, so I did my next set with only 4 (again, trying to get pieces that I could use in my bathroom):



I ended up with some decent cells, and 2 pieces that will go really well with my guest room!



But, while we got some really neat cells, we still had some cracking (we hadn't watched the last video above, yet).

I headed back to my sister's the next weekend, and we had time to try it again.

This time, I didn't bother trying to match the bathroom, and went very far afield from my usual color palette (cooler tones):



And, this time, my sister had some matte medium that we used, along with water, to make a pouring medium that we used to get our paints to a pourable consistency.

For this last set, I just used one cup, and poured multiple layers of each color in the cup. Then, I did the 2 pours from that. I think I went back to the first canvas (the one on the right) with some dribbles that were left in the bottom of the cup, which gave me that dark blob.



For this set, we reused the canvases that my sister did in the first 2 sessions (she hated her color choices), and we put them in the bathtub in the guest bathroom, and covered the tub with plastic trash bags in an attempt to have them dry more slowly. This set ended up with the most cracking. I'm sure that it didn't help that temps were in the 80's and 90's and it was humid as heck.

We ran out of canvases, but we're definitely going to be trying this again. I think I want to try a bigger canvas- it might help me get a thinner layer of paint. I have a couple of other ideas I want to try out, but I think we'll wait for cooler weather!
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« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2018 10:18:48 AM »

 Very pretty and so organic and flowy!
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« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2018 11:22:40 AM »

Thanks so much for sharing all that you learned! There are some really neat results here, even if they weren't quite what you were hoping for. It's inspiring and impressive that you two were so up for learning as you go and keeping going after not getting what you wanted.


The last set may have cracked the most because you were going over more acrylic paint. "Crackle" finishes that are done deliberately are basically semi-controlled adhesion failures, so you may get less cracking if you prepare your canvases with a suitable primer. Other things could be have a thinner layer and thin your paint with something like Floetrol which is specifically designed to thin latex and acrylic paints w/o compromising the dry coating. (... so, I was a decorative painting contractor in a former life...)
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« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2018 11:51:56 AM »

They all look so cool. Couldn't you just stare at those for hours? Amazing!
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« Reply #4 on: August 21, 2018 11:59:30 AM »

They came out beautifully, even if they weren't what you were going for.  Really lovely. 
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« Reply #5 on: August 21, 2018 07:00:41 PM »


The last set may have cracked the most because you were going over more acrylic paint. "Crackle" finishes that are done deliberately are basically semi-controlled adhesion failures, so you may get less cracking if you prepare your canvases with a suitable primer. Other things could be have a thinner layer and thin your paint with something like Floetrol which is specifically designed to thin latex and acrylic paints w/o compromising the dry coating. (... so, I was a decorative painting contractor in a former life...)

Thanks for the tips! I think the canvases were pre-primed, but you're right... going over an already painted canvas probably added to the problem on the last set. We didn't want to spend the $$ on a specific pouring medium (besides the Mod Podge we bought at the dollar store), especially since we didn't know what we were doing. There's definitely a knack to getting the right mixture, so maybe it's worth buying some Floetrol.

It was fun to play around with the colors, and I realized that I need to pay attention to the rules of paint mixing. Blue + Yellow= Green... which doesn't go with my bathroom Smiley

My sister didn't like her first two sets, and we poured over them for the third sets. But, my sister got distracted and forgot to add the silicone lubricant, so she didn't get a good result again. It's kind of funny, because she's the one who has the degree in art Smiley  I think she was too hard on herself with her first 2 sets. We'll be trying again once we get some more canvases (I need to watch for a sale).
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« Reply #6 on: August 22, 2018 05:44:54 AM »

I'm really curious about the Mod Podge and need to watch the video. Mod Podge isn't that different than white glue and white glue is often used as a lower cost crackle medium!
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« Reply #7 on: August 22, 2018 11:25:06 AM »

The first video that we watched had the goal of spending very little money on supplies (all bought from the dollar store), and he used Mod Podge, so we mostly copied the technique he showed (he didnt show the use of the butane torch, so we didnt know about that step Smiley ). I think one of the other videos used white glue and water.  But, now that you say that its a low cost crackle medium, itS no wonder that we got cracking!
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« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2018 12:12:21 PM »

Should you two decide to keep venturing, Floetrol is not very costly and you'd get a lot of these out of one bottle. Look at a paint or home store. Other paint extender media are likely to cost a lot more/oz or ml. Wink
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« Reply #9 on: August 22, 2018 12:38:58 PM »

I have been dying to try this! They turned out great. Thank you for all the tips.
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