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pigments/paints brushes grounds
 
  Elements of Art
  Principles of Design
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Paints are made by mixing fine natural
or synthetic powders suspended
in a vehicle, a relatively neutral or
colorless substance that acts as a binder.
acrylic paints ARE...
made with synthetic pigments suspended in a synthetic water-based vehicle.
Acrylics can be used on almost any surface, but cannot be applied over oil colors.

ADVANTAGES
They can be used on nearly any surface, including unprimed canvas.
Can be made into washes.
Are non-toxic because they are a water-based medium.
Dry quickly.
Do not yellow over time.
Once applied on a surface, have a high degree of flexibility, therefore adapt well to contractions and expansions of a surface.
Can be used as an under painting for an oil painting.

DISADVANTAGES
They have a plastic-like appearance.
Vary from transparent to opaque depending on the pigments.

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OIL paints ARE...
made with natural pigments suspended in a linseed oil based vehicle.
Oil paints are traditionally used on canvas.

ADVANTAGES
They have a high ability to reflect light, therefore are very bright and appear rich in texture.

DISADVANTAGES
They can be used on a limited selection of surfaces, which need to be primed.
are toxic and must be used in a well ventilated environment.
dry extremely slowly.
yellow over time.
are not flexible and when applied on a surface they crack over time.