How can I thicken acrylic paint?

Join 500,000+ Artists

Its' free and it takes less than 10 seconds!

Join the #1 Art Workshop - LevelUpJoin Premium Art Workshop

Results 1 to 13 of 13

Thread: How can I thicken acrylic paint?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Long Island, NY
    Posts
    748
    Thanks
    4
    Thanked 80 Times in 77 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0

    How can I thicken acrylic paint?

    Whenever I use acrylic, especially with flat, cel-shaded colors, I end up waiting for a long time for every layer to dry. I'm thinking of using clear Elmer's glue to thicken it. Do you know any other ways?

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  


  2. Hide this ad by registering as a member
  3. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Hudson River valley, NY
    Posts
    16,212
    Thanks
    4,879
    Thanked 16,669 Times in 5,020 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    What are you tryng to do, exactly? Do you want (a) faster drying, (b) better coverage, or (c) a thicker paint layer?


    Tristan Elwell
    **Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial

    Crash Course for Artists, Illustrators, and Cartoonists, NYC, the 2013 Edition!

    "Work is more fun than fun."
    -John Cale

    "Art is supposed to punch you in the brain, and it's supposed to stay punched."
    -Marc Maron
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    CT, USA
    Posts
    2,452
    Thanks
    110
    Thanked 1,082 Times in 231 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Thickening it means it will take LONGER to dry.
    Most Illustrators who use acrylic keep a blow-dryer next to their desk.
    Lay a wash, blow dry, lay a wash, blow dry, etc.

    - Dan Dos Santos
    www.dandossantos.com
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to DSillustration For This Useful Post:


  6. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    1,972
    Thanks
    1,331
    Thanked 1,923 Times in 757 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    If you use Liquitex gloss impasto gell it will dry quicker. The matt gel dries slower.

    From Gegarin's point of view
    http://www.chrisbennettartist.co.uk/
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  7. #5
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    518
    Thanks
    113
    Thanked 114 Times in 65 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    If you're painting on masonite, stop. Smooth wood has advantages in other areas, but it doesn't absorb the paint very well or at all. More absorbent surfaces, like canvas or illustration board, seem to allow the paint to dry a lot faster.

    Do you Mentler?

    Booting up a new sketchbook.
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  8. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    New Haven, CT
    Posts
    2,083
    Thanks
    323
    Thanked 968 Times in 519 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    I'd look at the brand of paint you are using, and the surface you are working on. Not all brands are equal. If you really want to thicken the paint buy something intended for that purpose. There are several brands that make a variety of mediums for acrylic to give it all sorts of qualities. Golden in particular I remember having a huge variety of mediums, including thick gels.

    Then again, as Dan mentioned, thicker doesn't mean faster drying. A thinner layer, will tend to dry more quickly, and a good brand will still be opaque even thin (depending on color of course- some colors are just transparent by nature). Changing your support could possibly change drying time too, depending on what you are already using. A blow dryer is probably the most fool proof and direct method.

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  9. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Long Island, NY
    Posts
    748
    Thanks
    4
    Thanked 80 Times in 77 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Low coverage is the problem. For example, it took dozens of coats of yellow just to cover up some pencil marks. Thanks for mentioning that some colors are transparent. I thought it was just my cheap brand.

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  10. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    522
    Thanks
    76
    Thanked 177 Times in 139 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Yellow seems to be a color who's pigments are predominantly transparent. Cheap brands of paint also have lots of inert pigment and fillers that make all of their colors more transparent. If you could allow it in your process, creating an underpainting in a neutral color plus white, it won't matter of the coverage of the yellow because the value is already under it.

    "A drawing is not necessarily academic because it is thorough, but only because it is dead. Neither is a drawing necessarily academic because it is done in what is called a conventional style, any more than it is good because it is done in an unconventional style. The test is whether it has life and conveys genuine feeling."- Harold Speed
    [[Sketchbook]]
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  11. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Lisbon, I think...
    Posts
    912
    Thanks
    69
    Thanked 153 Times in 107 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    You can get a bunch of Acrylic Mediums for different textures/results which you mix with the acrylic paint before applying it on the canvas.

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  12. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    645
    Thanks
    24
    Thanked 54 Times in 51 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Eminkey2003,

    I use acrylic paints for all my work projects. Liquitex is preferred but really I use all brands. So do you want your application to dry faster or get better coverage? Like DS has said a hair dryer is the tool of choice when it comes to faster drying times yet if you’re trying to create an effect ( ie the detail in rocks and boulders) I find carpenters wood filler works pretty well. Still have to paint over it though….and it may take several coats to get the desired color.

    Another thing. If you are experienced in working with acrylic paints you know that the colors, when dry aren’t the same as when first applied wet. A good coat of varnish will restore the colors to the look they had when you first put them on.

    Sorry if I’ve posted things that you already know. I’m just not aware of the level of experience of your art.

    Bruce

    Experiment/ test/ acquire knowledge……“Would be my motto, if I had a motto.” Mr. Universe/Serenity

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  13. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    2,060
    Thanks
    323
    Thanked 458 Times in 338 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    It should say on the tube whether the color is opaque or transparent.

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  14. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Toronto, ON
    Posts
    1,569
    Thanks
    1,169
    Thanked 1,191 Times in 516 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  15. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    New Haven, CT
    Posts
    2,083
    Thanks
    323
    Thanked 968 Times in 519 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Yeah, some colors can't really get away from being transparent, at least in artist's paints. You may be able to find a crafter's acrylic paint that is more opaque, since they are often more concerned with coverage, but it will not be as pure as an artist's paint.

    Have you tried painting white (which many whites are opaque) over the area first, then yellow over that after it dries? That would still take more than one coat, but you might get away with only 2.

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

Members who have read this thread: 0

There are no members to list at the moment.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •