Can you apply acrylic paint to wood? Will the paint bring out the natural beauty of my woodcraft? Technically you can use it, but you have to understand acrylic paint well before taking any action. In this article, we’ll talk about forms of acrylic paint, how to apply acrylic paint on wood, the best ways to keep your Acrylic Paints moist, factors to consider while purchasing Acrylic Paints for your projects, as well as the advantage and safety measures taken when using acrylic paint.
What is acrylic paint?
Acrylic paint is a non-toxic, fast-drying paint made of plasticizers, silicon oils, stabilizers, deformers, and acrylic polymer emulsion. It is water-based paint, but when it dries, it becomes water-resistant. Like oil-based paints, Acrylic paint can be applied with rich textures and can be combined with other mediums to achieve excellent results because it is synthetic.
Today, Acrylic paint has become a popular choice globally as they are readily available, rich in color, and you can use them indoors on a wide variety of woods. The beauty of working with acrylic paint is that it is easy to work with and can produce incredible results in the hands of a passionate carpenter. Acrylic paints are found in two forms, and they include.
Forms of Acrylic Paints
1. Artist Quality Paint
It is a form of acrylic paint with a higher concentration of smooth pigments. It also has the most comprehensive color choices and is expensive compared to student-quality paints. Examples of acrylic artist quality paints include Zinsser paint and Sennelier artist Acrylic set.
2. Student Quality Paints
It has a more affordable price range than the artist’s quality, and it is well known for large-scale painting and underpainting. It has many color shifts, but it does not cover a wide surface area on the wood.
How To Apply Acrylic paint On Wood.
Steps Taken When You Want To Apply Acrylic Paint On Wood
1. Gather All the Materials Needed For Painting Process
Before you begin to paint, you need to gather all the tools you require in your woodwork. The necessary materials for painting include:
- Wood Primer
- Paint Palette
- Paper towels
- Acrylic paint brushes
- Acrylic Paints
- Brush Basin filled with water
2. Prepare your wood
Due to the natural texture of the wood and its flat cuts, it is easier to paint and bring out a beautiful piece of art. But to get excellent results, you need to prepare your wood surface.
While preparing the wood surface, take the following actions
- Wipe clean the surface of the wood using a moist piece of cloth
- Lay the board on the table or a flat area.
- Using sandpaper or a sanding sponge, sand down the wood to achieve a smooth surface.
- Dust off any excess grains with a piece of clean cloth
3. Apply a thin layer of wood primer
When you apply acrylic paint on a wood surface without a primer, then there is a high possibility that you will not get what you desired from your project. To avoid that, you need to apply a thin layer of Gesso or KILZ Premium Wood primer and allow it to dry for an extended period to get a smoother wood surface.
4. Add a base layer
After applying wood primer:
- Squeeze some of the paint on the palette, depending on your choice of colors.
- Fill the bowl with enough water.
- Use paper towels to clean the dirty brush to avoid mixing colors.
5. Paint the wood Surface with acrylic paint
When applying acrylic paint on wood, Use a flat paintbrush to apply paint on the board. Allow the paint to dry thoroughly and apply again depending on the brand of acrylic paint you are using And dip your paintbrush often in water to keep it clean and soft.
6. Apply A sealant
After applying acrylic paint to your wood, you must use a sealant to protect your woodcraft from chipping and peeling. Liquitex acrylic and Mod podge finishes are considered the best sealers as they bring out the natural beauty of your work.
Like unstained wood, you can apply Acrylic paints on stained wood and bring out excellent results. Many people use Acrylic paints on stained wood surfaces because it’s a popular technique, and it replaces the original color of the wood with the new color giving your wood products a stunning look. Below are steps that you should follow while applying acrylic paint on stained wood.
Steps you should Follow While Applying Acrylic paint on stained wood
- Start by sanding down your stained wood with 150 grit sandpaper to achieve a rough surface.
- Add shellac or an oil-based primer to your wood to protect its surface. When priming, you should use a foam roller or foam brush to achieve beautiful results.
- Leave your wood to dry, and then wipe it with a dry piece of cloth to remove the remaining wet spots. But do not use a paper towel to wipe the wood surface.
- After priming your wood, take a new foam brush and apply three coats of acrylic paint.
- Allow it to dry over the sun for an extended period. During the drying period, inspect the wood to see any clumped paint residue that needs to be removed. If there is any, remove it with a dry piece of cloth before the paint dries completely.
- After the wood has dried, you need to apply a Polycrylic protective finish to protect your wood from peeling. While applying the finish, you can use a piece of cloth or an aerosol spray.
Though artists find it more enjoyable working with acrylic paint due to its fast drying time, sometimes the paint can be too frustrating, especially for beginners, as the paint on your palette and canvas can dry faster than usual when exposed to open air.
Also, check: How to Remove Acrylic Paint From Wood
To ensure that you bring out the attractive look of your wood objects, you have to follow proper guidelines. Below mentioned are tips that you can use to make your acrylic paint stay wet for a more extended period.
Looking to get into the world of wood carving? we have prepared a beginner’s guide on wood carving that you should check.
Best Ways to keep your Acrylic Paints Moist.
1. Use a Spray Atomizer
To keep your acrylic paint moist, you can use a small spray bottle filled with water. Spray the water on your palate to keep your paint moist.
2. Use a Stay Water Palette
An excellent example of a stay water palette is the Master Sta-Wet premier Palette. It comes with a sponge layer inform of an acrylic film that helps keep it moist for a more extended period when mixed with the paint.
3. Work with Paper Towels
Take some paper towels, wet them using water, and then squeeze your paints on them. Transfer the pigments on a palate and mix them using a paintbrush. Spray your paint as required to keep it moist.
4. Spray your Palate with Liquitex Palette Wetting Spray
Instead of using water to spray your palate, you can use Liquitex palette Wetting spray to keep your paint moist. The spray contains components that slow the drying rate of your paint, hence making your painting more manageable and more enjoyable.
5. Paint with Golden Open Acrylics
Rather than using regular acrylic paints, you can use Golden Open Acrylics as it is specially formulated to stay moist for an extended period.
6. Work in a Cool Place
To reduce the effects of the sun on your paints, you can choose to work indoors or work in the morning and evening hours when the sun rays are not intense.
Factors To Consider While Purchasing Acrylic Paints
Before purchasing acrylic paint, there are some things you need to put into consideration to ensure you make the right choice. Here are the factors to consider while choosing quality acrylic paints.
There are two grades of acrylic paints, student’s quality, and artist’s quality. Artist quality has a high concentration of finely grounded pigments and a smoother consistency, while student’s quality is cheaper but not the best option for good results.
The paint can resist fading when exposed to sunlight. Most acrylic paints lack fugitive pigments, making them have a higher permanence rate than other paints.
Acrylic paints are available in many colors. You can choose to start with an Acrylic Paint Set as it saves your money and your time.
It is the thickness or consistency of the paint. The viscosity of your paint depends on the type of wood surface you are using and the style of your paintings. It would be best to use heavy body acrylics for beginners as it is easy to thin with water to achieve the acrylic medium needed.
Though some brands are better than others, the taste is always a matter of personal preference. It might be a bit difficult to buy a brand that does not work around your budget, so you are encouraged to buy a brand that you can afford, and later you can experiment with different brands to see the ones that work for you.
6. Drying Time
Acrylic paints are always the best preference as they have a faster drying rate. But sometimes, they can be super annoying when exposed to open air as they dry faster than usual. If you want to extend your acrylics’ drying period, you can choose to work with a retarding medium or buy interactive Acrylics.
Advantages of Using Acrylic Paints on Wood
Compared to other paints, Acrylic paints are the most used paints due to the following reasons.
- You can use it on any wood surface.
- It has a faster drying rate which helps you save time.
- It is water-soluble before use and water-resistant after it dries
- It is less toxic hence safe around children and pets
- It is affordable.
- You can mix it with different mediums to achieve different textures and colors.
- It is durable and vibrant.
Safety Measures to be taken while using Acrylic Paint
- Wear protective clothing to prevent paint spillage from reaching your hands and feet
- Do not eat, drink, or smoke while painting to avoid accidental ingestion
- Some acrylic products contain toxic chemical substances, so you should keep them away from children, and young students should work under your supervision.
- Do not over-thin acrylics with water. You should use 30% or less water while mixing the acrylics.
- For effective results, use Professional Quality products
- Use different brands of acrylics to see which one works for you.
The beauty of woodwork lies deep within the heart of a passionate carpenter. Every piece of wood needs to be painted to create something attractive. Many paints are used on wood surfaces, but acrylic paints and products are always the best preferences. With proper guidelines on using acrylic paint on wood, you can bring out fancy and attractive wood products.