Question regarding glazes/washes and wet palettes
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Thread: Question regarding glazes/washes and wet palettes

  1. #1

    Default Question regarding glazes/washes and wet palettes

    Recently I've been trying to up my painting game and learning how to blend. As we are all aware this requires considerable thin paint, working mostly with glazes and washes.

    The problem I am having is that when I thin down paints to a glaze or a wash consistency, even with the wet palette, the paint will still dry up in a matter of minutes. I might get 10 minutes tops with the paint when thinned down to this level. The "globs" of paint I put on the palette are workable for hours. But once I draw some paint away from them to make a glaze/wash I'm working under the gun.

    Is this normal?

    What I can say is that it is rather frustrating, especially when I mix paints.

    In case it is not here is some information on what I'm using/tried in the hope someone can help me out here;

    I thought it was maybe my light drying it up but I ran into the same issue even when I moved the palette off to the side.

    I've tried using both a sponge and a microfiber cloth, same issue with both. I tend to saturate to the point where a little bit of water is flowing out of the sides of the sponge/cloth.

    I'm currently using the P3 Palette paper (because, for whatever reason, the only baking paper I can find locally is a baking paper/foil hybrid). When I lay the paper down and smooth it out there seems to be too much water collecting on the top of the paper and I have wipe it off with a paper towel.

  2. #2

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    It does sound odd. Especially as it sounds like your palette is too wet. The effect I would expect with too much water is for your globs of paint to eventually become too runny to use.

    How much glaze/wash do you mix up at any one time. If your puddle of glaze/wash is too small that could explain why it is drying. I have had that happen. Another thing I have had happen is that when mix paint on the palette my brush has made a small tear in the baking paper. Small enough that you don't notice when it happens. But you'll be painting away and suddenly you have no paint left its all dry/gone because the sponge has sucked it all through the paper. I have also had the issues with drying in an air conditioned room. This particular place no matter how wet I run my palette I only get a couple of hours painting before all my paint is dried out due to the dryness of the air.

    Maybe snap a pic of the palette with the dry spots and post it up so we can see whats going on.

  3. #3

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Stewsayer View Post
    It does sound odd. Especially as it sounds like your palette is too wet. The effect I would expect with too much water is for your globs of paint to eventually become too runny to use.

    How much glaze/wash do you mix up at any one time. If your puddle of glaze/wash is too small that could explain why it is drying. I have had that happen. Another thing I have had happen is that when mix paint on the palette my brush has made a small tear in the baking paper. Small enough that you don't notice when it happens. But you'll be painting away and suddenly you have no paint left its all dry/gone because the sponge has sucked it all through the paper. I have also had the issues with drying in <b>an air conditioned room.<b> This particular place no matter how wet I run my palette I only get a couple of hours painting before all my paint is dried out due to the dryness of the air.

    Maybe snap a pic of the palette with the dry spots and post it up so we can see whats going on.
    Hmmmm....this could be the culprit. Since it is the middle of the summer here I'm running the AC constantly and my room isn't very big although I do keep my door open so that the air doesn't become too stale. Unfortunately turning off the AC isn't really an option as I live on the second floor and will bake without it.

    It could also be that I'm not making enough of the glaze/wash at the time. Sometimes my puddles are a little small. I'll try large ones tomorrow and see if I can get some more working time out of them.

    Out of curiosity just how wet should the paper feel? In some pictures I've seen of wet palettes the paper looks more saturated than mine after I wipe off the excess. The paper itself feels cool when I touch it and it is stuck on pretty strong to the cloth/sponge.

  4. #4

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    I think it depends on the baking paper that you're using. The big thing is you don't want any air bubbles under it. Mine works best when the top of the paper is dry but cool to touch. I make sure my sponge is wet enough that water pools around my finger if I press it, that's before I put the paper on the top. Usually this means there is no water pooled around the sponge in the lunchbox I use.

  5. #5

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    The paper I'm using is the P3 palette paper and after applying it to the palette is behaves like your paper...cool to the touch but dry. Paint spreads out slightly when I initially put it on.

    I tried moving my light source higher up, using larger puddles...still running into the same issue. This becomes a particular problem with shading. With base coating, unless I'm using a custom mix, it isn't too much of an issue since I can just thin out more paint. And highlighting isn't an issue because it requires the least surface area to cover so I often have a highlighted coat done before it dries out. But with shading, due to the extra finesse blending requires, it has started to become both a major stumbling block and a source of frustration.

    As an additional experiment I took some Army Painter Quickshade (the dropper bottle version, not the dip) and put a few drops into a dry plastic palette I still have. The Quickshade remained usable and wet far, far longer than any glaze/wash I made on the wet palette. So I guess it isn't too dry in my room. I'm so very confused...

    Maybe it's a sign blending isn't for me.

  6. #6

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    I never mix my paint fully diluted on the wet palette. Not because I've had trouble with it drying out, but more because I find that diluted paint runs and end up spreading out all over the palette, running into other paint puddles etc. Instead I prepare the dilution I want each time I load the brush. Might seem a hassle, but during a paint session I often want to use the same paint with different dilution rates, so it is very convenient. As the paint is a bit thicker on the palette it doesn't spread out thinly, and it keeps workable for as long as I need it.

    You could try that approach and see if there is any difference.
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  7. #7

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    Try this: it's what I do. When preparing our wet pallet, get your sponge or cloth sufficiently wet (I use a stack of microfiber towels), then put your paper on top. Smooth it out, getting rid of air bubbles. Let sit for a minute or two. Now, flip the paper over. Get rid of any air bubbles on this side, and wipe off any excess water that formed with your hand. It's okay if there's a little bit of water on the surface, no big deal. Now you can paint and dilute as normal. Now that your paper is saturated on both sides, it should be okay. Make sure to cover the pallet when not in use. In extremely humid temps, your pallet can still dry out in a day if you don't add more water when needed. Get back to us if this worked.
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  8. #8

    Default Dry well vs wet pallete

    I've used both !! I myself like the use of a 15 pot small dry well PALLETTE just as the saturation of water on a wet P/ the dry well holds the paint in the recessed pots stay wet longer and for even longer when adding drying retardant. I get all my colors - mistimes- shades -highlights prepared and because its 15 Lil pots I can prepare a mudstone for the mudstone for the mudstone and step up the highlight 5 diff color gradations and so fourth . Basically it works the same way . But I like the wells as I can get it to the perfect consistancy. And I have again 15 wells of multiple shades highlights and mistimes further divided up even more. Adding a drying retardant (I use reaper and a p3 flow improver. ) with this it will eventually dry out whereas a wet PALLETTE will hold over a few days. But I've seen my dry well colors last for a whole painting session for me which is 8 hrs or more. I learned which one i like by trying them both . And although the wet PALLETTE I favored at the beginning of my career I now won't deter from my trustee 15 well dry PALLETTE . I blend much better. But try em both . And then make a decision. IMHO . Good luck.

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