If you’re getting into art, there’s a good chance that at some point, you’ll be looking to try painting on canvas. It’s a discipline that has a long tradition for artists, and there’s a lot to consider before you embark. I’ll run you through things to consider here, but it’s best to stress that the one thing you should do is get messy and try! You’ll learn more from doing than you will reading about it, trust me!
If you’re interested in starting to paint on canvas, you have a couple of standard options to choose from: oil paints and acrylic paints. Personally, I have tried both over the years, and each is its own distinct things, and brings its own unique challenges. Both mediums have their own unique characteristics and advantages, and which one you choose to use will depend on your personal preferences and goals as an artist.
It’s a good idea to try out both mediums and see which one you prefer, as there is no one “best” medium for everyone. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the differences between oil paints and acrylic paints, as well as the pros and cons of each medium, to help you decide which one is right for you. It may also be that neither is right for you, and you’d rather try something else like Watercolor or Gouache.
Oil paints are a traditional medium that have been used by artists for centuries. They are made from pigment suspended in oil, and are known for their slow drying time and rich, saturated colors. One of the main advantages of oil paints is that they can be blended and manipulated on the canvas for an extended period of time, allowing the artist to create a wide range of effects and textures. Oil paints also have good lightfastness, meaning that they will not fade or change color over time when exposed to light.
On the other hand, oil paints can be more difficult to work with than acrylics due to their slow drying time, which can be frustrating for some artists. They also have a strong odor and require the use of solvents for cleaning brushes and thinning the paint, which can be hazardous to your health if not handled properly. Oil paints can also be expensive and require a longer time to fully dry and cure, which can be a drawback for artists who want to work quickly or complete a painting in a short period of time.
Acrylic paints, on the other hand, are a relatively newer medium that was developed in the 20th century. They are made from pigment suspended in a water-based acrylic polymer emulsion, and are known for their fast drying time and versatility. Acrylics can be thinned with water or modified with a wide range of mediums to create a variety of effects and textures. They also have good lightfastness and are resistant to fading and yellowing over time.
One of the main advantages of acrylics is their fast drying time, which allows artists to work quickly and complete a painting in a shorter period of time. They are also relatively easy to clean up, as they can be thinned with water and do not require the use of solvents. Acrylic paints are also generally more affordable than oil paints and are widely available at art supply stores.
However, acrylics have some drawbacks as well. They can be less forgiving than oils, as they dry quickly and cannot be blended or manipulated on the canvas for an extended period of time. Acrylics also tend to have a slightly less luminous and vibrant appearance than oils, and may not be as suitable for certain styles or techniques that require a high degree of blending or subtlety.
Overall, both oil paints and acrylics have their own unique qualities and can be used to create beautiful paintings. Whether you choose to use oils or acrylics will depend on your personal preferences and goals as an artist. It is a good idea to try out both mediums and see which one you prefer, as there is no one “best” medium for everyone. Ultimately, the most important thing is to find a medium that you enjoy working with and allows you to express yourself creatively.