If you have a talent and passion for art, painting can be a great hobby for you. It allows us to creatively express ourselves, relaxes our mind and body, and helps memory skills. There are many painting techniques and colours that you can use, and if you’re a beginner, it can seem like a daunting task.
You’ll need to choose the type of colour that you want to use and what essential supplies you need. Art supplies shops offer a great variety of options that can be overwhelming, so you need some kind of a guide to get started.
Why Choose Acrylics to Start Painting?
Generally, there are three choices when it comes to colours or mediums: acrylics, oils, and watercolours. Watercolours are considered to be difficult to work with because you don’t have the experience to control them. The water is moving in all directions and mistakes are harder to cover up. Oil painting is exposing you to hazardous materials, so you need to be careful where you paint. Oils dry slowly and are harder to clean. Acrylics, on the other hand, are very simple to use for painting and the supplies that you worked with can be easily cleaned.
What Do You Need To Start Acrylic Painting?
Acrylic paints are synthetic, water-based paints that dry fast. They can be blended like oils, get a darker colour when dry, and are permanent once they’re dry. They allow you to quickly paint layer over layer because of their fast drying time. You can use them on their own or dissolve them in acrylic mediums or water. This makes them more economical and even the mediums are easy to work with. They can be cleaned with water while still wet.
Acrylics are used with brushes, rollers, and other painting tools for applying them on various surfaces like canvas, paper, wood, rocks, plastic, and others. They come in small or bigger tubes, jars, and bottles. The neutral colours like black or white run out quickly, so you want to get larger quantities of them and save more money.
Pigments are colourants that need to be mixed in something else. And that can be acrylics, oils, polymer clays, and others. You can use paint pigments to impart colour and for colouring many other materials like ink, fabric, plastic, and of course, paint. They are grounded into a powder that can be used with a binder or dry. They’re pearlescent or matte and aren’t toxic. You can buy artist pigment from art suppliers in any colour that you need.
Instead of using acrylic paint, you can make your own with pigments. This way is cost-efficient because you’ll make more paint with less money and you’ll have the exact colour you want. You’ll need to mix a powdered pigment with a binder and a solution to get acrylic paints. You’ll need an acrylic base which is paint with no pigment. It’s white and comes in a tube. Add the chosen artist pigment to a plastic container together with the base and mix them with a wooden spatula. You need an appropriate solution for the pigment like water or alcohol. To slow down drying, add an acrylic retarder.
It’s best if you do this in a ventilated area and with a mask. In this way, you don’t breathe in the paint pigment. You can combine different colours to get unique paint.
Quality Brushes and a Set of Knives
For building confidence and skill in acrylic painting, you need good brushes that’ll make your work easier.
- Round brushes are brushes with a rounded and pointed edge. They allow you to add different details with good control;
- Filbert brushes are flat with a rounded edge. They are especially good for blending;
- Flat brushes have a square edge. They are used for long strokes or thin lines;
- Angled brushes have an angled edge that’s good for creating different lines and curves;
- Rigger brushes are long, round, and thin. They’re excellent for thin lines.
Knives allow you to spread thick paint over the canvas or mix larger quantities of paint on the palette. They create different effects and add texture to the painting. You can buy a plastic set that’s good enough for beginners and later on you can invest in a set of metal knives.
Canvas, Paper, and Easel
Canvas for painting is very practical because it can be found in different sizes, from small to large, and it’s pretty affordable. Canvas is made of linen or cotton and can have different texture depending on the technique of weaving. Canvas panels are more affordable than those stretched on a frame. Also, they’re easy to carry around because they’re light.
You can use paper that’s specifically made for acrylics or you can use other types of paper but it needs to be heavyweight. The acrylic paint can go through thin paper. You need a paper that’s durable, so it doesn’t tear, acid-free, and not too smooth or oily.
There are different types of easels. They are used as a stand for your canvas. The most common ones are A-frame easels. They have three legs in the form of a triangle and are easy to store. H-frame easels are stronger than the A-frame because their base is more stable. But they aren’t easy for storing and take up more space.
Palette and Apron
Palettes come in many different shapes like round, rectangular, kidney shape, etc. They can have holes for the paint or no holes. They can be made of safety glass, plexiglass, real glass, wood, and other materials. Real glass is dangerous to work with because it can break easily but safety glass is made in a way that won’t shatter everywhere if it breaks. Since there are a lot of different types, it’s best to go to the nearest shop and see which one fits you best.
Aprons can be made from different materials like cotton, nylon, rubber, leather, and others. You need a good one that’ll protect you from the paint and that’s easy to wash. Rubber and nylon are frequently used when working with liquids and paints. More pockets can come in handy for keeping brushes, paints, and other essentials for easy reach.