My fascination ( obsession? ) with paint pouring continues. I am hooked on this! No two pieces are alike and watching the paints as they interact is hypnotizing and meditative. Seriously, I had a really bad day last week and doing some paint pouring completely changed my mood.
What's that picture at the top? It's actually the inside of the cup I used for this technique called a "dirty pour".
My simplified explanation of the dirty pour is you layer your paints in the cup vs a clean pour where you pour each color individually. In either process you need to mix each paint color in its own cup.
- Surface to paint. I used an Artist Panel ( aka a piece of wood they get to charge more for)
- Paints and flow additive
- Stir sticks
- Paper towels or rags
- Lots of stuff to cover your work surface
I got out some paint colors to play with. I had someone in mind for this if it turned out OK and I didn't have to smash it with a hammer, so I went with her colors.
For my first couple of pours, I used Liquitex Pouring Medium, but at $16.99 a bottle ( before 50% off with an additional 20% off total purchase coupon from Michaels) that's going to get a little pricey while I learn how to paint pour. I'd seen something called "Floetrol" mentioned as a good alternative. This is available at the HW store. I went looking for it but they only had a bigger size than I wanted to get (because what am I going to do with it if this piece turns out hideously ugly and the aforementioned hammer smashing was needed?) BUT they did have this Zinsser Paint Booster stuff shown above that I bought for $7.85 at Lowes.
Looked like the same contents as the Floetrol to me and MUCH bigger than Liquitex for half the price. SOLD!
I had a few of these "Artist Panels" in my stash from when Aaron Brothers Art and Frame was going out of business ( RIP AB! I know you're inside Michaels now kinda but I really liked your stores. Sniff) but basically, it's a piece of wood.
I decided to play with this vs a canvas this time.
Prepare your paints! So one thing you want to do is make sure you have all your mixing etc. done before you pour because well, you'd have nothing to pour? I've been playing with a ratio of 2:1 paints to additive. The Paint Booster stuff is thin so I think I may up this to 3:1 for the next one.
Mix each color in its own cup. I have found I like the wide craft sticks the best for mixing. Personal preference. No rules!
These are the colors I ended up going with. You can see for this 8x10 surface, I didn't need to fill each cup. Now it's time to prepare your pour. Take a clean cup and pour in your first color. Add pours of your other colors, color by color. Again: no rules!! Some people do it making concentric circles ( pour each color dead center of the last). Other people drizzle and drop their color layers. I did everything. Pour. Circle. Circle. Drizzle.Drop. Drop. Repeat until you have enough paint that it looks like you'll probably cover your surface. For this size piece I filled my pour cup a little more than half full.
The next step is , and this is the part where if you didn't protect your work surface then you still have time ...."paint pourer lift that cup". Your paints will take off and go making their way across the surface. You can help this along by tilting your panel in whichever direction is needed for the paint to spread. This is where you want to have gloves on if you haven't up to this point.
Since this isn't an exact science with precise measurements I had leftover paint. So I thought I'd use the same colors to do a clean pour. I didn't take pictures but this was done by just drizzling the remaining paints since I didn't have enough to do layered puddles. The flow additive really made a difference and the paints flowed much more freely than with the Liquitex (which could have been more to do with me not using enough additive). Blah blah blah...I love the result!