Tag Archives: materials

The Gold Rush of 2014


I am fond of adding metallic gold to my work but I’ve had a hard time finding a material that is both shiny and easy to use.  Gold leaf is beautiful but expensive and messy to work with.  This is my quest to find a paint product that mimics the gold leaf look.  Below is my labeled swatch chart showcasing seventeen different metallic paint/ink products that I tested.

Metallic Gold Paint Chart

GOLD PAINT:  For this test, I applied two coats of each product.  You can see each gold swatch has a distinctive gold color.  My favorites are both of the Golden Acrylics, the Daley Rowney liquid acrylic, the Versatex screen printing ink, the Martha Stewart and Folk Art craft acrylic.  These paints are easy to apply and impart a lovely sheen.  I dislike the Blick acrylics which have a strange plastic quality that makes it difficult to get a smooth, even application.

For a silver paint, the Utrecht silver acrylic (I’m sure Golden has a good one too) is the clear choice.  The Blick version is too gray and not reflective.

For textured gold, Martha Living has a nice Glitter finish.  The Metallic finish is less impressive, as the particles in the heavy gold paint seemed to dull the sheen.  Golden’s mica flake acrylic paint is a unique product with the flakes suspended in a gel medium that dries clear.  It comes in two size flakes, small (seen here) and large.

If you are looking for an oil base paint, Rust-oleum’s Metallic Gold Paint covers well with just one coat but has strong fumes and used only when wearing a respirator.

I’d love to hear any other products people have used that they recommend.  Thanks.

My Consumers Report…FrogTape® vs. Painter’s Tape

My Consumers Report…FrogTape® vs. Painter’s Tape

I’ve been looking for a method to create crisp, sharp edges on canvas.  I’ve used standard blue Painter’s Tape in the past, but with poor results and lots of under tape paint bleed.  Along comes a new product…FrogTape®.  FrogTape® is advertised as the only painter’s tape treated with PaintBlock® Technology. PaintBlock is a super-absorbent polymer which reacts with latex paint and instantly gels to form a micro-barrier that seals the edges of the tape, preventing paint bleed. I decided to conduct my experiment on gessoed cotton canvas.  Here are my results:


On the top line, I painted directly over the two different tapes with (1) undiluted Golden’s acrylic tube paint and (2) the same paint heavily watered down.  While the FrogTape® was better at preventing bleeding, neither did a good job.

Don’t despair!  I discovered a better method to prevent paint bleed.  The trick is to paint one coat of gel medium (I used gloss gel as it dries totally translucent) over the tape edges, let dry, then paint as usual. Both the FrogTape and the painter’s tape work well with this method (though the painter’s tape had some gel bleed that could add an unwanted ridge at the tape line.)

Have you conducted any artists material experiments that you would like to share?  I would love to hear about them.