Why are paintings varnished
Sealing acrylic paint - the right way!
So that you can still enjoy your picture for many years to come, the right final treatment is one of the most important steps in painting. In the following we explain how you can seal acrylic paint and thus secure the brilliance and luminosity of your painting for the future.
Good reasons for carefully sealing acrylic paintings
Acrylic paints are comparatively insensitive. In contrast to oil paintings, for example, final protective layers are not necessarily required for acrylic paintings. Nevertheless, it is advisable to also seal pictures created with acrylic paint.
There are two main reasons for this:
- Sealed acrylic paints are thus additionally protected from harmful external influences
- A varnish makes it possible to unify the surface of a picture or - with the appropriate tools - to change it.
The right tools for sealing acrylic paintings
There are various aids for the final treatment of paintings. Finishing varnishes and varnishes are mainly used for sealing acrylic paintings. Both are applied in as thin layers as possible on the well-dried picture surface.
Finishing varnishes protect acrylic paintings from dust, dirt, fingerprints or moisture. In addition, the appearance of the picture surface can be determined with it: optionally glossy, silk-gloss or matt. Some products contain special UV protection. The UV protection protects the varnish from aging, not the colors. It is therefore advisable to use acrylic paints that are as lightfast as possible right from the start.
It is important to seal acrylic paintings that are completely dry. With thin layers of paint, this is usually possible after 72 hours; Acrylic paints applied in pastose form should only be sealed after one to two weeks.
In contrast to the re-dissolvable final varnishes, top varnishes dry permanently, which means that they cannot be dissolved with the organic solvents commonly used in art painting. Lacquered acrylic paintings are more scratch and shock resistant than varnished ones.
The right tools for sealing acrylic paints
If you want to seal acrylic paint, you can use different tools to do this:
- soft, wide varnish brushes for applying varnishes or lacquers,
- special fixators / atomizers for applying fixatives,
- Spray cans or pump sprays for spraying fixatives or varnishes as well as
- Spray guns or also
- Paint rollers for applying paint.
Here's what you should pay attention to when you want to seal acrylic paint:
- Remove dust and debris from the acrylic surface before sealing.
- Make sure that both the varnish and the acrylic painting are at room temperature.
- Matt or semi-gloss products in particular should be shaken well and for a long time before use.
- Varnishes are usually sprayed "in a cloister" from a distance of 30 - 40 cm onto the vertical or slightly inclined acrylic painting. "In a cloister" means that several layers are sprayed one after the other from rotating directions (e.g. first from right to left, then from top to bottom, etc.).
- Always change the spray direction only outside of the image area in order to achieve a homogeneous surface without visible transitions.
- Varnishes contain volatile organic solvents and should therefore only be used in well-ventilated rooms.
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