Updated: Apr 26
My default medium of choice is acrylic paints, but I didn't start using them till about four years ago. They always scared me! After having quite a lot of experience with acrylic paints, I want to tell all the budding artists out there why they need to try acrylic painting today!
1. It’s easier than you think
It’s a common misconception that watercolour is childish and easy, and acrylics or oils are more difficult and for real grown up artists. Nothing could be further from the truth. I think why this is believed is because watercolours are so difficult that the final result ends up looking childish, whereas acrylics and oils are so easy that even with mediocre skill, they look very professional. In my experience, I find watercolours extremely difficult to control. They require planning and care to get it right. Acrylics however are easier to control, and work even with limited planning. You don’t need to stay within the lines, you don’t need to carefully control the water to paint ratio. You can just experiment and go on painting, and it still ends up looking great!
2. You don’t need a lot to start
All you need to start acrylic painting is a canvas board, a couple of tubes of paint, and a brush. You don’t need different types of solvents or mixers. They are diluted using water, and are generally not a complicated medium to use.
3. It’s not messy
I would not recommend starting with oils. I myself have not gotten to the point where I’m comfortable with them. They require solvents and mediums that I’m not so well versed with. Moreover, I don’t know how to clean tools, and I find the smell really strong. Acrylics, on the other hand are not as messy. You can wash everything out with just water, and wipe with tissue. It’s less overwhelming.
4. It’s extremely forgiving as a medium
The best thing about acrylics is how forgiving they are. You don’t need to stay within the lines, because literally everything can be corrected. You get a do over like no other medium. Paint over and start afresh if you are really unhappy with your whole painting!
5. Results are quick!
Acrylics as a medium are very quick. There are other medium like coloured pencils, that are inherently slow. Even oils, while they can be quick while working, they take days if not weeks to dry. I wouldn’t particularly call that fast. With acrylics, you work fast, and you get the results fast too! Which is very rewarding and fulfilling.
6. It's easy to learn
The best way to learn a new medium is to experiment. Saying that, like everything else in the world, there are hundreds of tutorials on YouTube for beginners, which can easily get you started. If you want to know the best ones out there, and more resources to help you out, let me know, I know a bunch.
7. It's Fun and vibrant
Acrylics are vibrant and bright, and have lovely buttery consistency. While they dry a little matte as compared to oils, they can still be made to look colourful and bright very easily. Just layer up, and you’ll love dragging that brush across the canvas.
I hope I was able to inspire some of you to give acrylic painting a chance.