Here’s what you need to know about pouring paint | Livingston/Tangipahoa
Aspiring artists who are not adept at drawing or creating oil paintings or other traditional paintings, but want to create a personal, colorful and memorable piece of art, may want to try their hand to paint for, the subject of a recent class at the Livingston Parish Literacy and Technology Center.
In simple terms, dripping paint involves mixing different colors of acrylic paint with other liquids, then pouring the concoction onto a canvas stretched over a wooden frame. The results are amazingly beautiful designs that can be hung around the home or office.
Lucia Spinosa, an accomplished artist who is also an assistant administrator to Krystal Hardison, director of the Literacy and Technology Center, led the sold-out class on how to create a poured painting. As simple as the process may seem, Spinosa led his class through each step involved in the process.
To begin, she explained the materials placed in front of each painter – plastic cups filled with paints. For the class, Spinosa chose white, blue, and brown paint as the base colors. Also in front of the painters were wooden frames covered with canvases fixed in aluminum pans. The set was completed with popsicle sticks to stir and spread the paint.
Spinosa began his lesson by explaining that one of the secrets to creating paint for painting was the use of Floetrol, a white liquid that has a variety of uses in conjunction with paint and can be purchased at a number of paint outlets. Floetrol, Spinosa said, allows paint to become thinner and more fluid.
“It will make it easier to handle the paint once on the canvas,” she says. She then said she mixed two “pumps” of a coconut oil hair product into the Floetrol. “This creates what are called cells and prevents the paint from mixing and allows for higher color contrast since oil and water don’t mix,” she explained.
The mixture was then poured into each cup of paint and stirred with the popsicle sticks. Spinosa said the mixture should be “thick like syrup and not dripping like water.” Once the paint was well mixed, Spinosa asked the group to then pour the contents of the three cups into the fourth empty cup. “Don’t stir this mixture,” she warned.
Then, according to Spinosa, the fun began. The class was instructed to use what Spinosa called the “flip cup” method to create their images. The cup full of the paint mixture was pressed firmly against the canvas and the canvas was then quickly turned over, the cup lifted and the paint allowed to take its own course on the canvas. As the paint began to flow in the direction dictated by the law of gravity, laughter permeated the room as the images began to appear.
Poured paints can also be enhanced by adding other colors to the first pour and streaks of gold, silver or other colors can be added. Lines can also be drawn on the paint while it’s still wet, Spinosa said.
Spinosa said the paints dry after about 24 hours and can then be overcoated with various glass or satin coatings which give the image permanence and shine.
Poured paints, like fingerprints and snowflakes, have the distinction of being one of a kind. Once the paint is poured onto the canvas, it follows indeterminate paths that cannot be mastered by the person creating the work. Neither of the two paintings will ever be exactly the same.
Spinosa concedes that for the paintings do not offer a message as do conventional drawings, sculptures, oil, pastel and the works of art with which one is generally associated. But she also noted that art doesn’t always have to send a message. Beauty can be appreciated for its intrinsic value, she noted, and the paintings she has exhibited show how attractive paintings can be.
“What’s so great about pour paint is that anyone can do it and produce something very attractive. It’s a fun way to be creative,” she said.
Spinosa said she started painting conventional art in college and continued to have an interest in art. She mainly works with charcoals and makes drawings and paintings at the request of clients who want specific types of art.
After seeing a pouring paint demo on Instagram, she researched the process and then tried it out herself. Once she had perfected all the steps, she said, she was ready to teach a class in the process.