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There are several folks that have/do paint with craft paints. I have painted with 'em myself....although, I don't any longer.

 

I will say this: If you have a choice between buying 10 colors of craft paint, or 3 colors of vallejo or reaper---buy vallejo or reaper (or any other high pigment paint).

 

The craft paints aren't as conducive to pro techniques as the more expensive paint. If you are serious about painting, it's best to start working thinned paint now.

 

The craft paints are thicker (because of fillers and such), and have a lower pigment count. I can personally tell a HUGE difference in the way the paint works relative to craft paint...some folks would deny this difference.

 

The quality of your tools WILL make a difference in the end product; however, they WILL NOT make up for bad technique.

 

Make your own decision, of course....but consider your goals first.

 

Do you just want to paint...or do you want to learn to paint well?

 

Kev

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Fuzzy one, I paint with Apple barrel, Americana, Delta Ceramcoat, and Folk Art paints. I do ahve a few bottles of Reaper pro-paints but my budget is also fairly tight.

 

I find these paints work fine, as long as when you thin them you use more extender than water with them than you would with pro-paints. It seems to work better that way. Some people complain of the paint getting to grainy as you thin it. I've only had this happen once, and it turned out it was a bad batch of paint to begin with. I personally like the wide color range I get with craft paints, it saves a lot of mixing. I only mix if I am layering or making custom colors now.

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I'm in the same boat as Enchantra. I wish I could afford the higher-end stuff...but alas, I cannot. Take Kevin's advice and get the high quality stuff if you can afford it. There's no sense in putting yourself at a "disadvantage" if you can help it.

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I was just wondering how common is it to start with Apple Barrel paints? Thats all I can afford, I know it isnt like the other modeling paints, but how is as a beginning paint? Any pros and cons with it?

Craft paints have larger grains and less pigment strenght. You get much less coverage once thinned. I have found it less durable as well. I would also recommend buying fewer good paints instead of craft paints.

 

Buy/find some airtight containers to store paint in. Buy a few core model paints. I recommend Vallejo. Black, white, red, yellow, blue, and maybe a flesh tone for simplicity. Mix a few shades you like and store them in the empty containers. See, I have a ton of Vallejo paint, but what it comes down to is that I'm too lazy to mix my own paints all the time or mix shades and store them. I'd rather pay $3 dollars for a shade of brown than bother mixing black and yellow and storing it. Basically, I'm lazy.

 

With black, white and the primary colors, you can mix anything except metallics. That's 5 paints. At $3 a bottle, that's only $15. You will be much better off with the good paints. Besides, if you buy cheap paints you will replace them anyways as soon as you can afford to. You'll also find that while being forced to mix paints, you will learn a lot about colors and color theory and it will help immensely down the road when you are working on more advanced techniques.

 

I have a lot of craft paint and it has all been delegated to terrain painting. None of it is allowed to touch my precious minis. I agree with everything Kevin said. You will never know how good you are if you are limited by poor supplies. It becomes difficult to tell whether something is a result of your doing or a result of bad supplies. It is easier to learn new techniques with good brushes and paints. They help you achieve a certain result where poor supplies will hinder your efforts.

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I am a visual arts minor, so mixing paints really isnt the issue (other than skin tone from scratch--that is such a pain in the butt!) . I am going to replace them eventually with the good paints, but I serously dont have the money now. When I do replace them, I am going to use them for other stuff, I am constantly repainting stuff around the house (stupid apartment, not let me paint the walls ::(: ) So its not like I am not going to not use them once I replace them, I was just wondering if the techniques where any different, fading problems or something like that. I just want the DL on these paints.

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While I don't personally care for most of them, I know at least one multiple Golden Demon winner who paints exclusively with craft paints, including Apple Barrel. I still use several colors from a number of those lines simply because there is nothing else out there that is precisely and indisputably "THAT color".

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Well, I'll throw my opinion in here, I use a few craft paints (The ones from Dick Blick) and they're ok, but they need to be thinned, and when you do thin them, they need multiple coats to cover well. This isn't all bad if you do a lot of wet blending, I'm too impatient though, and I don't like to do 5 coats of red to cover the black primer. But, The finished product I can tell where I used the craft paint instead of the good paints, but it probably has more to do with my painting style and less to do with the actual paint.

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I'de suggest just replacing perhaps one colour at a time with something good, like Reaper Pro or Vallejo paints (Vey reasonably priced from www.albinorhino.com). Just the "Essentials", like black, white, brown, green, etc.

 

Just start small is the key. You'll find that $2-$2.50 a bottle is really not that much at all. Save getting a soda, and add that $1.50 to your $0.44 you already saved for a new bottle of Apple Barrel paint. It's amazing how much you can save by just limiting yourself.

 

I remember I mowed lawns to get my first starter set of Vallejo, back in March 2003. ::P:

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While I don't personally care for most of them, I know at least one multiple Golden Demon winner who paints exclusively with craft paints, including Apple Barrel. I still use several colors from a number of those lines simply because there is nothing else out there that is precisely and indisputably "THAT color".

 

I'm not sure if it's who you are talking about...but I believe Honza uses 'em, too...(if memory serves)....and he does "just fine"... ::D:

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I have to agree with most of the people... it's much better to start with good quality paint. I think that some people can get craft paint to work nicely, but it takes a lot of skill in my opinion.

 

I started with craft paints and almost quit because everything came out chalky and grainy. I couldn't seem to thin them right and thought I didn't have enough skill to paint well. When I switched to Vallejo, I saw a major jump in improvement right away.

 

Buy just the essential colors in good paint and work up from there as you can afford. I think you'll end up happier. I see paint lots on Ebay all the time for cheap. I bought 18 Reaper pots for like $14 with shipping not too long ago. Good deals can be had.

 

GM

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I also started out using craft paints since I hadn't really painted with acrylics before, and wanted to start modestly. The last mini I did had a mix of craft paints and vallejos (I neglected grey tones when I purchased my vallejos ::(: ). I noticed disturbing graininess in areas that I was using grey tones (mainly the NMM) while the vallejo areas are much smoother.

 

Technique wise, you'll need to thin the craft paints a bit more but it is really easy to over thin. I would include an acrylic extender medium to help bolster the binders that you'll be diluting as you thin. Also, I have a bad habit of laying down a glaze of color, and, instead of waiting for it to dry, start applying a second and third coat right away (probably because I had thinned to the point where I wasn't noticing any color change and I'm over compensating). That tends to lift up paint (the first coat that hadn't dried yet) and muck up the surface. Let the first coat dry ::):

 

Hope this helps

Thanks

AWhang

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