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Need Help with Washes...


Thor
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Hi,

 

Working through the Learn to Paint Kit #2. I am trying to use Brown Liner to wash the lettering on Laurana's scroll. When it is wet, it looks perfect (right after I apply) as the lettering is dark. However when it dries all the lettering doesn't come through. I picked up some Future Acrylic Floor Polisher, but I'm wondering what the ration would be to add to the MSP Brown Liner and if there is a different technique I should use to apply it? Right now I am just using the Brown Liner and Water in a 1:1 ratio.

 

Thx!

 

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You don't want to add Future to your MSPs (it has been reported for awhile that they don't play nice together).

 

I add MSP flow improver and a little MSP brush on sealer to washes and glazes to help them behave better. 1:1 seems a little concentrated for a wash, I think my brown washes are closer to 1:2 (or more water even). I'll normally take a drop or two of paint, 1 drop MSP flow improver, 1 drop MSP sealer and add water until I like the way the wash looks as it clings to the sides of the wells in the pallette.

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You also might want to try painting the base color of the scroll on the non writing parts it might make the writing pop. As for your washes I think they might be too thick. Thin them out a tad 3:1/ 4:1 and drop a little liquid soap in there with it if you don't have the MSP flow improver.

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You also might want to try painting the base color of the scroll on the non writing parts it might make the writing pop. As for your washes I think they might be too thick. Thin them out a tad 3:1/ 4:1 and drop a little liquid soap in there with it if you don't have the MSP flow improver.

 

Surely you don't mean 3 or 4 parts water to 1 part liner? If he's using 1:1 liner to water, that's pretty thin already, as the liners are so fluid.

 

Sometimes you'll want more opacity for detail work or darklining than when washing with the same color. Try adding less water to the liner to make the color more concentrated. Or once the lettering dries, just go over it again to darken the lines.

 

I can't quite tell from the picture, but if your primer is at all fuzzy, it will sort of soak up the color and leave you with that faded look. When that's the case, sometimes a couple of coats of the brush-on sealer will level the surface enough to work on.

 

--Jen

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I may be way off base, but here is my 2 cents worth. ::):

 

Too keep it simple; let us assume the letters are regular ink on regular paper. When you are reading, there is a sharp contrast between the two and this makes it legible. You spill coffee on it and drop it in the mud, it may still be readable, but not washed out. (As the ink is assumably water-resistant). In proportion to the miniature, if you had your coffee stained paper, then one could see from 10 feet that there was writing, regardless if it is legible. Yet, on the miniature's scroll, there might be a question if there is any writing.

 

Looking at the miniature in the photo, remember that a wash covering the scroll might do two things to the writing on it:

 

The first is that it would actually diffuse the sharpness of the original. The nature of the wash is a light film that is clear when wet but might cloud when dry (hence the opinion of thinning it further). The muted colors of the wash blend automagically, and a little of the original shows through, and a little does not. Normally this is the great power of the wash.

 

However, if the wash color and the writing color are too close, the letters would be diffused into something little more than a shadow. "Pops when wet, washed when dry" might bee a catchy little mantra to help one remember.

 

A good solution to this problem is either (as stated before) to thin the wash further (which might be a less dramatic effect than you want) or to darken the scrolls writing/use a lighter wash. Do the writing dramatically compared to the color of the scroll. Naturally, the wash would mute the writing, but the heart of the contrast would endure. Usually letters three shades darker (or even lighter) than the background, two darker (or lighter - depending on the direction of the writing) than the wash, works (but remember - going dark to light works better than light to dark). Washing does not even have to be the same hue (Red Letters - Blue wash - Purple Letters when dry). If you are looking for a more "weathered" look to the scroll, then either the second problem's fix would work there, or alter the base color (white + brown wash = tan paper / yellow + light brown wash = tan paper).

 

The second problem is "pollution". Remember the ink on paper example, where we assumed the ink is waterproof? Some additives and mediums bond with the paint in a way that creates a weakness. Depending on ingredients, "Gunk" might be your enemy here. Once the acrylic is dry, reintroducing water to it might "open" the paint again. This means it reverts to a state of complete wetness as if it just went on. Touch it with a brush, or have a little too much water weighing down a spot and it is absorbed and looks like a wrinkle! The writing is gone! Poof!

 

Unsealed, there is no difference whether the writing was dry or not. This is much like "wet blending", but concerning the scroll this might be called "wet blanding". :rolleyes: (Sorry, I joke. Too much at times)

 

If this is the case, sealing the writing on the scroll might help - just the writing, not the whole thing. Add a coat to the writing, or use waterproof ink for the writing, or some other creative device to keep the writing intact and apparent. If it is waterproof when dry, the wash would still cover it, but not reactivate it.

 

 

The solution is easy if you have defined the problem, and it is possible one or both of these are the problem you face.

 

For what it's worth, I really like the miniatures you painted, and they show promise and good work. I believe in some way you have breathed life into them!

 

Good luck - HTH

 

::D:

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If that picture shows a wash of Brown Liner on the scroll, you are thinning it way too much; it's coming off more as a medium brown, and should be much darker. Thicken your wash a bit. Remember that you will probably have to touch up the scroll a bit with your base and highlight colors for the parchment. The way to minimize this is to do a *selective* wash; i.e., only put the wash over the letters, not over any other part of the scroll. ::):

 

Hope that helps!

 

--Anne ::D:

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I'm curious what problems people have had with Future and MSP.

 

I've been using future with mine and haven't seen any problems. This is the first I've heard of it, actually (but I'm not around this forum a whole lot).

 

Not to de-rail the thread, but can someone elighten me as to what's happened in these cases? Might help me prevent a possible future (pun intended) problem.

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The person who formulated the paint says "Don't do it", so I just took that as gospel. I'm sure Anne will weigh in and state what happens.

 

The problem with FF in ANY paint is that it makes it shiny. If you want a smooth matte finish, then you don't want FF! I've used a lot of different things in Gunk. The cheapest I've come up with that is still matte is Modge Podge Matte. It's basically glue that dries matte, so it's also good for flocking. Won't be shiny when it dries.

Edited by Cerridwyn1st
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Actually, I wasn't the one who said not to do it. ::): Around the time of the very first MSP release someone used it and got horrible separation/spotting/gunky issues. It's possible that this was an isolated incident with a bad batch of paint, because some of those first batches turned out to be bad ones! It was never really determined what the issue was. If you have been using Future and MSP's together for ages and have had no problems, then I say Huzzah! And I hope it continues. ::):

 

--Anne ::D:

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