Experimenting with Acrylic Flow and Mod Podge: Part 2

Untitled design (1)

Let the Acrylic Flow experiments continue!  The results from my first experiment yielded “interesting” results, but not at all what I was wanting in terms of flow and the gorgeous POP of cells.


For my second experiment I reworked the base ratio of Mod Podge to paint to water.  In the first experiment I went with a 50/50 ratio of MP to acrylic paint and then thinned it to what I thought was a good flow consistency.  Sadly the paint was too thick and I ended up with rocky terrain paintings rather than the gorgeous flow that I wanted.  I headed back to YouTube to research “recipes” and consulted with my knowledgeable friends.  Then I decided upon the formula: 2/3 Mod Podge to 1/3 water (mix thoroughly) for the pouring base.  2/3 paint to 1/3 base + 3 drops of silicone (mix thoroughly).  Additional water can be added if needed to create the “perfect” flow.  Armed with this formula I once again gathered my cups and set to work mixing paint!

I decided to use neons for this batch.  Of course purple is in the mix (big surprise, right guys?).  My blue was created from 3 different paints (Apple Barrel, Folk Art, and a shimmery one that I can remember the brand) since there wasn’t enough of any one of them to mix.  I also made 2 cups of white this time and left out the black (it seemed to muddy the colors in my first experiment).  NOTE: Clear plastic cups allow you to see if all of the components have been mixed together.  Time to paint!!  YIPPEE

I began layering the colors in a new cup (see experiment one for photos if needed).  White went in first, then purple, then pink.  a small squirt of silicone (sorry there is no exact measurement for a “squirt”).  3 more paints followed by another squirt and then finally 3 more layers of paint (alternating colors as you go) and a final squirt of silicone.  I used a plastic knife to “cut” into the paint mix…please note DO NOT MIX or STIR!  Simply cut through the paint layers 2-3 times and then set the knife aside (I scraped the excess off on the side of the cup).  Time to do the flip: Place the canvas on top of the cup, hold both components and FLIP!  Let the cup rest for a minute or 2.  This allows the paint layers to flow down.  When you can no longer wait to see….(drum roll) lift the cup (OOOOOOO…AAAAAAAAAA)

The colors were amazing!  And right away I begna to see the magical cells forming.  WooHoo!!  Tilting the canvas up and down, side to side, corner to corner and the paint filled the canvas surface stretching the color and cells at the same time.  I was mezmerized by the freeform nature of the technique…and could hardly wait to try a second one.

Before I moved onto a new one I pulled out the heat gun and ran it over the surface, tempting out any hidden cells.  NOTE:  I learned after the fact that using a heat gun may actually bake the surface, forming a film.  I also learned that it can “burn” the paint.  A better choice for coaxing out the hidden cells is to blow lightly over the surface using a straw.

Next up, using the colander.  As I said before, I watched a lot of YouTube videos with various techniques and tools.  One that caught my eye involved pouring the paint into a colander and lifting.  The paint flows through the holes in the colander and forms a chrysanthemum looking design.  Not sure if I did it correctly, but mine DID NOT come out that way (ooops).

I poured the paint into the colander, waited a moment for it to flow through, and then lifted to reveal…..mush.

Hmmmm, not what I was expecting.  I think more experimentation with the colander might be beneficial, but not right now.  Back to the gorgeous pour for the next canvas…

I found a 2pk of inexpensive journals at Ross and decided to pick them up along with some more canvases.  I used painters tape to shield the pages from the pour.

Ready to pour…

Bolstered by the results on the first, I decided to do the second one.  It turned out even prettier than the first!  The yellow and pink paints blended nicely together and formed an orange that didn’t come through on any of the otehr pieces.

By now the sun was hot and I was running out of things to paint.  I decided to use all of the leftover paint and pour the paint onto the canvases rather than lifting the cup.  I filled the cup with layers just as before, set my last 2 canvases on the table and began to pour…

The results were just as beautiful as the other.  Cells began to form once the canvases were tilted and the paint spread.  this process yielded one of my favorites of the day!IMG_0426

Of course as I said before all of the pieces I painted on this day had the heat gun applied over the surface.  I noticed the next day that many of the pieces had a crackled look to them…kind of cool (I think), but not what I thought was going to happen.  So I turned it over to my panel of experts and here are their takes:

  1. It’s called “crazing” and it happens when your pouring medium is too thick.  Good to know…I guess the pour that I thought was thin enough wasn’t.  Note to self: make sure it pours off the spoon in a thin stream
  2.  It was suggested that the heat gun dried the Mod Podge too quickly and lead to crazing.  It was also suggested that any glue-like product may add to the crazing as it dries.
  3. OR some white paints craze when heated.  It was suggested to use a kitchen torch instead of a heat gun.  38472430_842294499491777_48135390703386624_nMy heat gun is now safely tucked away, but this is still my favorite from the day.

I had multiple friends weigh in with using Floetrol as a flow medium rather than the Mod Podge.  In the fairness of experimenting, Floetrol will be in my next post.  Keep watch for the next post as well as my next Creative PaperClay blogspot (creativepaperclay.blogspot.com) where I plan to use one of my acrylic flow canvases as a base for a mixed media piece.

Until then, thanks for visiting.


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