After Tuesday evening’s art lesson, I was keen to put to practice at home some techniques we picked up involving acrylic mediums. Blending colours using Gel medium and a palette knife was on my list. And after discovering that acrylic paint is best mixed with medium rather than water, I thought I’d put that to the test too! So what to paint then? Something kawaii of course!
Go Crazy with the Blue!
I firstly drafted an outline of my Little One on my Mixed Media pad (Strathmore’s) in pencil. She’s holding a flower this time! Spring has finally resumed after a cold spell so I thought it would be an idea to use some bright colours and freely use flowers in my paintings again. Instead of using the three primary colours we had played with during the lessons to blend paint, I stuck to just blue. Actually, an ultramarine-type blue paint along with titanium white. Then I thought I’d add some flavour by combining that with some baby blue acrylic ink to experiment the effect. To properly blend, I poured the Gel Medium (Liquitex) from the plastic bottle and randomly spread in the two blues and white with a medium-sized triangular palette knife. I was careful to go only around the outline of the Little One, and thus for the edges, I switched to a smaller knife. How fun was that, and looks really cool too!
Fun with Acrylic Medium
I had a bottle of Acrylic Binder by Schmincke sitting in the cupboard. Apparently, it has a multi-purpose function of being an adhesive glue for, say, collages but is also the basis out of which acrylic paint is used. For instance, you can create your own paint by mixing binder with pigments. So I guess it logically follows that you can still mix binder with existing acrylic paints right? I gave it a shot. Painting felt smoother and helped spread the colours evenly, whilst giving a lovely glossy sheen. I also decided also to apply some modelling paste on Little One’s hair to give some dimension. The eyes were outlined with Molotow acrylic markers but filled in with paint as per above method. As for the paints themselves, I went for Talens Amsterdam Acrylic but for the pretty pink dress, I switched to Rangers Dina Wakley’s in Magenta.
Mixed Media Twist
Well you know me. At this point, I wasn’t satisfied with just finishing the piece as “just a painting” especially in this case. I still wanted to focus on the pretty blue-mix background so didn’t want to add to much. And I felt working on Little One’s dress may clash a bit and distract the background from attention so I left it as plain pink for a change with her kawaii white round collar. I did find some unused origami-paper cut outs in flower shapes. After gluing them on with the acrylic binder, I drew in the stem and leaves with Molotow acrylic markers. The eyelashes were also dotted in with the markers in gold. And now!
I had a lot of fun experimenting again. The background turned out wonderfully as the blending with the paint and gel medium worked really well. It’s not often that I use a palette knife like that, and I really love the effect. And using acrylic mediums in place of water is a great idea. The finish is much heavier with a more even coverage which is the desired result. I’m very happy. And so is the Little One!