What Paint?

Last week I taught a painting workshop and I know that when it comes to acrylics, the range of colours, paint types and especially mediums, can be both breathtaking and bewildering. As a bit of an aide memoire for my students and also hopefully of interest to you too, here's a bit of info about what we used and why.

We used jar colour (Seacryl by Seawhite) and fluid colours (Golden Fluid by Golden Paints). Jar colour is great, it's got a thick buttery consistency and covers opaquely. The Seacryl paint is a student grade paint, but I find it's great for everyday use in the studio. I often use it for printing and sketchbook work. That said, if you can afford it, it's always preferable to buy the best quality paint you can afford. My favourite is Golden. I just buy a few colours and mix. I've posted a list of the colours I'm using at the moment at the bottom of this post if you're interested.

Since I started using them a few years ago I've fallen in love with Golden Fluid acrylics. And no, I'm not sponsored (I wish!). The colours are extremely intense and the runny consistency of the paint suits my painting style. I like to mix them with glaze medium, or if I want a thicker paint, with a bit of matte gel.

I did read recently that you shouldn't mix and match brands of paints and mediums. I didn't know that, and always have done so. Maybe there are questions of the longevity of the paint film. Have to say, I'm not really interested in whether my work will last for hundreds of years! Previously I've been using either Golden or Liquitex matte gel as an additive to the paint mixture, or as a collage adhesive. Just recently I've tried Jackson's Matte Gel and I really like it. The consistency is very nice and the price is even better, about half the price of the big brand names.

Finally in class we used Jackson's Fluid Matte Medium. I use it in a similar way to glaze medium, but you can also use it to pour acrylic skins. I've tried this with limited success so far - more experimentation is needed.

I should just say, this is by no means exhaustive, it's just a run down on the products we used and that I find give good results for the type of work that I do. You can get all of these products online of course.

Thanks for visiting today. I'll be back with more on acrylic painting soon.
Bye for now,

The Seacryl paint colours the students used:
White, Black, Primary Cyan, Primary Magenta, Primary Yellow, Yellow Ochre, Phthalo Blue and Cadmium Red.

The Golden paint colours I use:

Raw Umber, CadmiumYellow Medium, Burnt Sienna, Ultramarine, Quinacridone Crimson, Mars Black, Titanium White, Zinc White, Yellow Ochre, Phthalo Blue, Cadmium Red.

The Golden Fluid paint colours I use (well I have quite a few, but the ones I use most):

Quinacridone Crimson, Transparent Yellow Oxide, Phthalo Blue, Carbon Black.


  1. I too have heard that old furfy about not mixing brands but I think it is an urban myth perpetrated by the manufacturers to make us stick to just one, preferably their, brand. I am not Picasso or Matisse, just your everyday painter/textile artist and have never had any problems mixing brands.

    Have you read Michael Wilcox's "Blue and Yellow Don't Make Green"? If not, I would recommend it. He writes about watercolours but I think what he says would apply equally to acrylics and I think it would be great for students.

    Keep up the good work. I love seeing what you and Amelie have been up to.


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