Acrylic or Oil?

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When we look at wall painting closely, we notice that one gives a certain impression that is different with the other one. This could be attributed to the paint that was used. Although before or during the age that is much older than what we are in now, you couldn’t see variation in the reflection of the paint. And this is because only oil paint was known during that time.

Then, came acrylic paint. It gives less luminous effect. So if you are looking more for a matte look, you can opt for this kind of paint. Others prefer oil than acrylic while some are just used to use the latter. The thing is one is more sought after the other depending on the need it is supposed to serve. The time allotment for a wall painting to be fully cured, ‘say for a rush project, will be best satisfied by an artwork using acrylic paint. Count a couple of hours or a day or two then you have a masterpiece ready for art exhibition.

As all visual artists who know wall painting know that oil paint in this situation will not be part of the solution to address the immediate need. It takes weeks for oil paint to dry.

Nonetheless, renowned artists of yester years and to-date were and are loyal fans of oil paint. Aside from the fact that acrylic was not introduced yet to painters, it has also been known to all artists doing wall paintings that art creation can still be altered or enhanced while in the process of doing finishing touches and this is possible only with oil paint. As we notice when we checked on art online or in physical shops, it is very seldom that a wall painting of whether it is an Asian art or European is not created with intricate details. These details along with blending of colours are most of the time done from different trials, modification, or enhancement. This can be very difficult if acrylic is used because the paint dries too fast. It seems that no extra time is allotted to alter mistakes or unsatisfactory result.

The a priori mentioned is the exact opposite when you use an oil paint. An artist can rectify the mistake or can do more touch-ups until he gets what he thinks is the best for the art piece. ‘Say after a few days, he thought of making a portion darker in colour, he can still go back to altering the paint because the wet paint still allows the artist to blend colours. Or better yet, if the artist could not get the desired effect of the piece he is creating, he is still given time to study and learn how to go about it until he feels satisfied with the outcome.



The author, Shannon, is the co-founder of Artyii, an online sale platform of Asian emerging artists. He specializes in acquiring quality wall paintings at good prices for art lovers worldwide. He has also assisted those who were looking for artwork for sale and those who loved to buy art online.

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