Quick product finder

Range Information

About Artists' Acrylic Mediums

As an artist we know that you appreciate the unrivalled qualities of Artists’ Acrylic, with its wonderful colour brilliance and no colour shift from wet to dry. Now Winsor & Newton are pleased to introduce a new range of mediums. These have been specially developed to maintain all the benefits you get using Artists’ Acrylic, whilst giving you ultimate control in your work and the ability to explore further possibilities to your heart’s desire.

The new Artists’ Acrylic Mediums range:
  • Maintain no colour shift from wet to dry when used with Artists’ Acrylic
  • Ensures no loss of colour depth
  • Offers excellent working characteristics
  • Gives you the control you need

Click on the headings below to discover more about the unique qualities of Artists’ Acrylic Mediums

Artists' Acrylic Mediums RangeArtists’ Acrylic Mediums
Maintains no colour shift
No loss of colour depth
Range details
Mediums usage map
Characteristics and Benefits
Primers
Gloss Mediums
Matt Mediums
Modelling Paste
Additives
Varnishes
Infinitely Versatile
Permanence
Clear label information

Artists’ Acrylic Mediums

Artist Ant Garratt working in studioWe’ve made good use of the extensive development and research carried out for our range of Artists’ Acrylic and applied the same developments in resin technology to our new range of Artists’ Acrylic Mediums.

When using Artists’ Acrylic, with no colour shift, unrivalled colour brilliance and depth of colour, you don’t want to compromise on this by adding mediums of other brands, which will dull your colours and cause them to shift.

By using the right acrylic mediums the possibilities are boundless allowing you to push the limits of your creativity, whilst giving you added control, to get the result you want.

Whether you are looking to change the finish, alter the texture, control flow or drying time the Artists’ Acrylic Mediums range offers the products you need. These mediums bring versatility and stability along with the dependable quality that artists have come to expect from Winsor & Newton.

Maintains no colour shift

A widespread problem with other acrylic mediums is that they are milky white when wet, yet dry clear. Using these products with Artists’ Acrylic would cause colour shift from wet to dry. Colour shift occurs as the medium dries from white to clear. As the milky white medium that you have mixed with your colour dries and becomes clear, the paint becomes more transparent and therefore darker. It isn’t easy to see how the mixture will look when dry as the colour will shift and darken in tone as it dries, so it is necessary to do test pieces to find out what the dry result will be.

With Winsor & Newton Artists’ Acrylic Mediums this is no longer an issue. The mediums are formulated using the same clear resin binder as the colour range. The mediums are clear or translucent when wet, and dry completely clear, so you can maintain the absence of colour shift with Artists’ Acrylic as it dries.

Mediums with blue colour    Gloss medium comparison

No loss of colour depth

The majority of other mediums available to artists can make the colour appear weaker and lighter in the wet state. This is because they are milky white when wet and therefore appear to ‘dilute’ the colour. The colour loses its brilliance and depth and becomes lifeless.

Colour plus mediums

With Winsor & Newton Artists’ Acrylic Mediums you no longer need to compromise on the unrivalled brilliance and depth of colour you get with Artists’ Acrylic. Not only does the clear resin binder prevent colour shift, it also ensures no loss of colour depth or brilliance of the colour in the wet state. Your colours retain their clarity and purity, remaining clean, bright and strong, so your art is vibrant and full of life.

Range details

Artists' Acrylic Mediums in Ant Garretts studioThe Artists’ Acrylic Mediums range consists of a carefully selected collection of 14 products to take you from the start of your painting through to the end.

Rather than have an infinite array of mediums, often with a lot of overlap in usage, we’ve developed a concise range of core mediums. These are essential for an acrylic artist to accomplish their work, and also the give you the scope to discover new ways of mixing and applying mediums for maximum creative effect.

Primers:
  • White Gesso
  • Clear Gesso
Structure:
  • Modelling Paste
Mediums:
Gloss
  • Gloss Medium
  • Gloss Gel
  • Glazing Medium
Additives:
  • Flow Improver
  • Slow Drying Medium

Mediums:
Matt

  • Matt Medium
  • Matt Gel
Varnishes
  • Gloss UV varnish
  • Matt UV Varnish
  • Satin UV Varnish
  • Varnish Remover

 

Which Medium should you use for which effect? See our Usage Map.

What result are you looking for? A matt finish? Extra body and structure? Or a combination of both of these? Our usage chart below will help you to find the right product. Download usage chart as a pdf. 

Mediums usage mapThe Artists's Acrylic Mediums usage map

Characteristics and Benefits

Primers

It is important to prepare your painting surface with a gesso primer. This ensures a stable and sealed surface, as well as adding tooth. It is important to use a good quality primer for good quality colours as the longevity of the painting depends upon all its constituent parts.

White Gesso

White Gesso  This gesso is made from the highest quality acrylic resin. It has a superior level of pigmentation to give maximum covering power, so one coat is usually enough. However we recommend using two coats for unprimed canvases when used with oil colour.

It is fast drying and opaque and dries to give an excellent level of tooth and a balanced absorbency. It dries to a non-yellowing, flexible ground suitable for acrylic, oil and alkyd painting.
It can be used straight from the pot; dilution is not recommended.  

 

Clear Gesso

Clear Gesso  This gesso is made from unpigmented clear resin which provides excellent tooth but dries completely clear, therefore it doesn’t change the original appearance of your ground. If you want to start your work from a coloured ground, you can make your own tinted gesso primers by the addition of acrylic colours. We recommend using up to 1 part Artists’ Acrylic with 4 parts Clear Gesso, and opaque colours will give a better result.

It is fast drying and provides a balanced absorbency. It dries to a flexible ground suitable for acrylic, oil and alkyd painting. It is also suitable for preparing a surface for pastel or charcoal.  
Clear Gesso on canvasClear Gesso on Canvas

 

Mediums & Additives 

Below the products are arranged according to the final result you require: gloss, matt, texture, flow, or drying control.

Gloss Mediums

  • See our video on how Gloss Mediums maintain no colour shift. 
  • Watch how artist Vanessa Brady uses gloss mediums for her techniques.

Glazing Medium

  This is the best medium for creating glazes as it gives maximum transparency to the colour as well as enhancing colour brilliance. This enables you to build up thin layers of highly transparent colour to achieve luminous and glowing effects. The medium is translucent so it ensures no colour shift from wet to dry when used with Winsor & Newton Artists’ Acrylic.

The medium improves the flow of the colour to give you good levelling. It slows the drying time of the paint so colours will remain usable slightly longer when mixed with this medium. It dries to a completely clear flexible film with a high gloss finish. It can be mixed with colour or used neat as a clear glaze, but is not intended to be a varnish. It is highly durable and is water resistant when dry.
 Artist Paresh Nrshringa using Glazing Medium

Gloss Medium 

  This medium increases the depth, transparency and flow of the colour making it ideal for blending or fine detail work. It can be used in thicker layers than the Glazing Medium and provides an even gloss finish. This medium dries completely clear and maintains no colour shift from wet to dry when used with Winsor & Newton Artists’ Acrylic.   Gloss Medium in use 

Gloss Gel

  This medium increases the transparency, depth and gloss of the colour. Its gel consistency is thicker than the Gloss Medium, matching the luxuriously thick and buttery consistency of the colour. Hence when mixed with colour the thickness of the colour is maintained, so the paint retains brush strokes and palette knife marks for excellent impasto effects. This means you can change the paint without compromising the feel. It dries to an even gloss finish. This medium dries completely clear and maintains no colour shift from wet to dry when used with Winsor & Newton Artists’ Acrylic.  Gloss Gel in use 

Matt Mediums

  • See our video on how Matt Mediums cause no loss of colour depth.
  • Watch how artist Neil Douglas uses Matt Medium for his techniques.

Matt Medium 

 

This medium improves the flow of the colour making it ideal for blending or fine detail work. It provides an even matt finish and increases the water resistance of the colour when dry. This medium contains clear binder and matting agents giving you no loss of colour depth when used with Winsor & Newton Artists' Acrylic.

 
Matt Medium in use 
 

Matt Gel

  This medium decreases the gloss of the colour. Its gel consistency is thicker than the Matt Medium, matching the luxuriously thick and buttery consistency of the colour. Hence when mixed with colour the thickness of the colour is maintained, so the paint retains brush strokes and palette knife marks for excellent impasto effects. This means you can change the paint without compromising the feel. It dries to give an even matt finish. This medium contains clear binder and matting agents giving you no loss of colour depth when used with Winsor & Newton Artists' Acrylic. Matt Gel in use 

Modelling Paste

  • Watch how artist Anthony Garratt uses Modelling Paste for his techniques.

  Our modelling paste is lightweight and flexible so it doesn't shrink or crack. It thickens the consistency of the colour, building body and structure and accentuating texture, brush marks and palette knife marks. It also increases the opacity of the colour. It is ideal for carving, sanding and creating extreme textures. It can be used to easily and quickly build up depth in layers, and either overpainted when dry or mixed with colour. Due to the high level of solids in the paste which gives its thick structure, it is opaque and therefore may lighten certain colours. It provides an even matt finish. Modelling Paste in use

Additives

Flow Improver

  • Watch how artist Anthony Garratt uses Flow Improver for his techniques
  • Watch how artist Neil Douglas uses Flow Improver for his techniques
 

This additive increases the flow of acrylic colours, by breaking down the surface tension of the water. It is ideal for the application of areas of flat and even colour without changing colour strength. It is also effective for hard edge painting techniques, staining and water colour techniques. It maintains the stability of the colour and slightly slows drying, so colours will remain usable slightly longer when mixed with this medium.

If you want to dilute your colour significantly, we recommend using Flow Improver with your water, as this preserves the integrity of the paint film, ensuring the pigment remains sufficiently bound. Under-bound colour can appear blotchy, may become brittle or not adhere to the canvas well, all issues which are avoided if you use Flow Improver.

This additive maintains no colour shift from wet to dry when used with Winsor & Newton Artists' Acrylic. 

Flow Improver in use

Slow Drying Medium

  • Watch how artist Anthony Garratt uses Slow Drying Medium for his techniques.

Slow Drying MediumSlow Dry Medium in useThis additive slows the drying time of acrylic colour to give you more working time for extended blending and manipulation. A ratio of 1:1 volume doubles the drying time. Do not mix with colour above 1:1 as excessive amounts will cause the colour to become under-bound, thinner and slightly stickier in consistency. This additive has been formulated to match the consistency of the colour. This means that none of the characteristics of the colour are affected, except the drying time. You can mix Slow Drying Medium with any other medium in the range to slow the drying.

This additive maintains no colour shift from wet to dry when used with Winsor & Newton Artists' Acrylic, unlike other slow drying mediums.

Varnishes - Protecting your finished artwork

Professional artists know that varnishing your finished work is an important step, and one that should not be neglected. Varnishes act as a protective sacrificial layer over your finished artwork, protecting it from dirt and grease and other airborne pollutants, which would otherwise come into contact with the paint. Our varnishes also contain a UV protective agent which improves lightfastness and protects from other UV damage such as fading or colour shifting in tone.

These varnishes are therefore particularly beneficial when coming to varnish non-lightfast media, such as digital print or giclée prints for example.

Demonstrating Varnishes in use 

Our varnishes are equally suitable for use on artwork painted in oils and alkyds.

There are three Artists' Acrylic Varnishes available depending on your desired finish, Gloss, Matt and Satin.

These varnishes dry to an even finish, and can be intermixed to vary the result to achieve any sheen.

  • Watch how artist Paresh Nrshinga uses varnishes on his work 

Varnish Remover 

  By removing the varnish over a painting you can remove the dirt and pollutants trapped on the surface, before re-varnishing to further protect your artwork. Our Varnish Remover allows you to safely remove varnishes with no damage to your painting. It removes Winsor & Newton Artists' Acrylic Gloss, Matt and Satin Varnishes. Varnish Remover in use 

Artist Vanessa Brady
Vanessa Brady using Artists' Acrylic Mediums
Infinitely Versatile

All Artists' Acrylic Mediums are fully intermixable leaving it to your creativity to discover new combinations and effects.

Permanence

The binder we use in the mediums has been specifically tailored for our requirements. It is highly translucent, lightfast, age and weather resistant. It is non-yellowing, and has been carefully chosen for its long term stability.

You can be certain that by using Artists' Acrylic Mediums you will not affect the performance and high stability of Artists' Acrylic.

 

 

Clear label information

We believe in providing good information to artists. We've developed a quick reference guide for our product labels, so you can see at a glance the key properties of the medium, and make easy product comparisons.

Example of an Artists' Acrylic clear label
Click here to view full sized label.

This table has scales for the following properties:
Opacity to transparency
Gloss to matt finish
Fast drying to slow drying
Fluid to thick

Please read the product labels and for more information about Artists' Acrylics you can visit our microsite on www.winsornewton.com/acrylics

Essential Information