No heat and no silicon either this time…

still on the no heat trials I decided I’d do one with no silicon too.
I did a swipe and usually I get better cells than this, I don’t know if its because there’s no silicon or that maybe my paints were a bit too thin. I don’t think it was the paint, usually if its too thin I get a lot of runoff and I didn’t with this. I have had good results before without silicon but then i used torch, so I think its just the combo of both on this occasion. I could probably do the same again and get totally different end result – that’s the beauty of fluid art for me, so difficult to predict.
One thing I notice from the final dry painting is that the metallic red has taken over and i can see other colours, lines and shapes below it but they just can’t seem to break through it, next time I’ll either leave it out of use just a small amount.
I’m not really happy with the painting as it is but I think it’ll make a nice background for a silhouette of something, bare trees maybe?


Painting without using blowtorch or heat gun

There have been discussions recently on facebook groups about possible breathing issues/poisonous fumes when using torch or heat gun. I don’t always torch, sometimes I want a “less busy” painting, to just enjoy clean lines of colour, but notice the cells still appear. I thought I’d do a video showing how you can get cells using floetrol even if you don’t torch. I used spray silicon, but have done works without silicon and still ended up with a few cells.
I’m using some new fluorescent paints, and as they are transparent I’ve picked a couple of opaque blues. Original plan was to use black, but I didn’t have enough premixed so I used white, then realised I didn’t have enough of that so used black too. From end result I used too much black/white not enough colour. I also didn’t mix enough paint and tilting to cover canvas lost me some of the cells.
I looked a couple of hours later hoping the fluorescent paints would have burst through but not as much as i hoped so i pulled through some paint on a lolly stick, the remnants in the cups, to add some vibrancy.

As a painting its a bit meh….the canvas was an old one and even though I checked level as normal it was a bit loose and paints pooled in centre losing some of the lovely shapes. It’ll probably be one for adding extras to once dry. As an experiment though to see how you can still get interesting effect and cells without torching it works.

A still taken from video, just out of cup. My paint looks a bit thick, they were new to me paints, and next time I’ll make them thinner. You can see how there are some great shapes and cells, but I didn’t mix enough paint, plus being a bit thick, and when i tilted, even though i was careful I lost lots of the cells.

About 2-3 hours after painting, I wasn’t happy so used leftovers in paint cups and dragged lines through with a mixing stick. This is the result next morning almost dry. If I hadn’t been doing an experiment I’d probably have mixed a bright colour and swiped it, paint was still wet so could be altered.

Testing Fairy Liquid against silicon.


I wanted to see if I could still get cells with fairy liquid instead of silicon. ( in US fairy is same as what you call Dawn I believe, stuff those like me who don’t have a dishwasher use!!)
I used 3 3×3 inch canvasses, all new ones, and marked them so i knew which was which. I added a few drops fairy to one, silicon to the second and nothing to third for a control.
All paints were my usual mix of paint, floetrol, and water. I did make the fairy one a bit thicker as the fairy i was adding was a 50/50 fairy water mix.
I tried to keep same amounts and add each colour in same order. I tried to only add a drop of silicon but with such a tiny amount of paint that was still too much i think and i don’t like the result that much, though it does go nicely with the others.
I really like both the fairy and the control one, and i may well use Fairy again. There aren’t any big cells but it seems to make what for me is a nice reaction with the paint. I’ll be interested to see how it works on a larger painting.
Dry pics, ( I brought them into house, ones is studio taking weeks to dry.)

Testing pva for waterfastness as a Resin type finish.

I’ve been looking for a resin type finish, tried Liquitex Pouring Medium, which looks good – not as good as resin but close. Its easier to use but works out expensive so I’ve tried PVA this time.

the LPM was fine with water and has dried with no marks.

the PVA, a fail, surface is tacky and absorbed water even when cold water used. that’s not camera/light glare, it’s where the pva has absorbed water and gone cloudy…

It looks fine at first glance, if I’d been a bit more careful in application it would be better, but what I really wanted to test was how it reacts with water once dry.
Resin and the Liquitex PM were both fine, even with boiling water, but this…well. Fail.
Even with cold water it softened and marked and as for boiling water, it went tacky and lifted really quickly.
I’m convinced there’s no place for it as a final coat, maybe with a varnish over it might be ok? I’m not going to use it that way but might be worth trying.

What did occur though is the thought – what about those who use it as a pouring medium? Is there any likelihood it will lift/soften in the same way? I’m guessing if work is varnished it won’t be a problem but its something to be aware of it you don’t/haven’t varnished.
Of course you’re not going to be pouring boiling water over your work as I did here for the experiment but we do hang art in kitchens and bathrooms, both of which can get quite steamy and moist air. Something to be aware of maybe. I can’t test that, I haven’t any successful ones I’ve used glue in, that’s why I gave up with using it as a medium, but perhaps someone that uses glue/PVA can confirm if they’re ok in rooms like this or not? .

Quick video pouring water over Liquitex Pouring Medium used as a final coat. 



I’d used Liquitex pouring meduim as a poured coating on this 6x6inch canvas, when i was trying to get a resin effect without the difficulty of resin working. Its good, but still not as good as resin, and to be honest works out very expensive that way for us here in the UK. I can only get it in litre bottles, thats largest size avaialable, and its around £29 for that. Now if we had those fab gallon tubs at $45 that I saw on sale in US this week…..BTW a gallon is about 4.5 litres – you can see why I weep when I see US prices. Anyway, I’d seen other use PVA in this way for a coating, but hadn’t got round to trying that. My carpenter brother and I were talking about painting and he said PVA will go tacky again in contact with moisture so its not a good idea to use it that way and it made me think about whether the liquitex would do that. So, first poured some cold water on and moved it arouind and then -0 well, I thought I’d go for it and pour on boiling water….and left it there for a couple of hours. the boiling water did seem to soften it a very little but no tackiness, and no fingermakrs so didn’t affect the actual coating, and now a few days later it looks the same as it always has. I will try this with PVA sometimes, right now though the studio is Freezing, its around 4c here in daytime and I’ll need to bring some stuff into the house to have a hope of the PVA drying enough to try this out. Might brave the cold later today 😉 then can try this next week once its dry.

Golden Primaries Trial

Golden gave me some samples, among them hansa yellow, pyrrhole red and pthlalo blue. I decided to use these in a negative space painting – and really try to be strict with myself because I fail miserably often with this, using too much colour. Its on a 10 x 8 inch canvas and I’m using little shot cups to mix, total colour for my dirty pour including some white is about 1/3 of a cup – and worked well!
the video shows the process, I’ve premixed the colours, trying to keep it short…usual mix, paint, floetrol, water, silicon. Usually i use 1:1 paint and floetrol but the golden colours are so intense its more like 1 paint to 3 floetrol and could probably go even less. Golden do say their fluid can be diluted 1 to 15 for pouring…..These aren’t fluid but a kind of soft body paint – as in the paint is soft body, not for painting on soft bodies – each to their own though 😉


just red, yellow and blue, but I have greens, browns, violets in the final piece.

I also wanted to try a fun challenge, a painting using grey, silver, gold, pink and either white or black. I chose black but TBH it was a disaster. the silver is several years old and as I discovered, gone pretty lumpy. I thought I’d got lumps out but as final work shows I haven’t….

But as always its a learning experience, I would either chose white next time, or a lighter grey, or perhaps less black and grey, have them as accent colours? I might do this again just to see if i can get it better.
I used the run off from both to pour over some rocks for Norfolk Rocks, fun thing where people hide rocks for kids to find…And then the tray with that run off got used for some dips. Some predictably were awful, greyish brown sludge by the end but two came out pretty well.  I bought a few fridge magnets so might cut the best bits and put into them.

colours used plus white

I forgot I did a couple with some new fluorescent paints, ordered a few but so far only got green and yellow – but new paints won’t wait 😉 so used a couple of others and did one dirty pour flip cup, and one just a pour.

sadly lost that fab out-of-cup look.
dirty flip cup pour
same colours but poured from cup along canvas. I didn’t like the centre so poured quite a bit to get rid of it.

Some swipes and some “pull” paintings – or perhaps “push ” might be more accurate…

I’d been pretty fed up of all the fails – downside to experiments is that lots of them Just Don’t Work – and while I expect that, its still frustrating. So I’ve had a few days of back to basics, just paint, floetrol, water and silicon. Done a few dirty pours then Monday I wanted to do a negative one with metallic paints and try to mimic peacock tail colours….sadly the green dominated, I used gold, blue, green, yellow and purple, but though I only had minimal green I think the blue and yellow combined too much and I ended with a green painting. I like it – but its not really what I wanted.
I used a bamboo skewer to pull out some of the edges, and to try to shape some circles in the green and dipped in to add a little more colour. the photo is while its still wet – they’re taking ages to dry lately, outside in my shed.

I had a bit of dark blue and purple left, so I decided to try something on the resin coated paper. I tipped it over a piece of card, dropped in a bit of non diluted gold and cerulean blue, spread round with palette knife and pressed another piece of card over the top, pressing down really firmly. then peeled back card. It reminds me of encaustic painting when I use an iron, where as I lift the iron the wax collects in shapes. I carried on with a couple more bits of card, then decided to try it on two bits of board. I scraped out all the purple and gold I had, squeezed on more of both straight from tube, plus cerulean blue and repeated above process. I did it a few times before I was happy. Not sure what I’ll do with these but it was fun 😉 I couldn’t resits a bit of glitter over them too….

The resin coated card

Still on the metallic theme i tried a swipe yesterday, its on canvas 20 in by 8 in. I poured lines of colour, dark purple divided into two and metallic medium added to one, same with the cerulean blue, a dark blue, magenta, pale pink, and gold, with some oyster pearl added to the pink and magenta. then white at both ends. And…. swipe – I loved the way it was straight away but the pic is about an hour later and somehow the cells lose some of their definition. I think maybe I have too much paint – I’ll try with less and see if that helps.
I’m hoping the metallic shows up more once its dry, and noticed as it was drying that some of the darker colours and the gold were slowly popping through. I like this one even though it wasn’t as crisp as I’d like.
Today the plan is to clean silicon of some dry ones ready for varnishing. and tidy my work space and add fresh paper….no painting, but somehow I think one might just sneak in 😉
I’ve put a recent card one in a frame and its hanging in my kitchen.