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Acrylic paints for modeling

Acrylic paints are the most commonly used paints in modeling and model making, especially when applied with an airbrush to create unique and impressive figures and scenery. They are water-based (not oil or enamel-based) so they can be diluted with water as well as master medium or specific acrylic thinner for airbrushing.  A great advantage of this type of paint is that its thinners are less harmful and less toxic than oil or enamel thinners.

Model paints are one of the most sought-after colors because of their many benefits and advantages and, above all, because of their wide variety of colors. The best presentation will be the dropper bottles with a steel ball inside which allows the quantity to be dispensed onto the palette or wet palette in the desired amount. The mixing ball inside the can, present in all the GSW ranges, facilitates the mixing of the pigments in those cases where there may be some sedimentation.

Green Stuff World manufactures Maxx Formula paints from mid-2023. This formulation is an updated formula of high pigmentation, and matte finish, specially designed for painting miniatures that can be found directly online at the official store or through your closest local store.

Characteristics of Water based acrylic paints

Water based acrylic paints consist of weathering or natural pigments suspended in a polymer emulsion, which creates a realistic and unique effect, similar to that created by watercolors or oils on a canvas but on a miniature, model, or diorama. Its characteristics are inimitable and have exclusive advantages, such as: 

Fast drying

Those who are involved in modeling know that there is nothing more boring than waiting and watching the figures dry. Once they are ready, we can't wait to use them! But with some types of modeling paint, this can take several days. Thanks to their basic properties, this is not a problem anymore, as they dry to the touch in a few minutes. However, keep in mind that it will take 20 to 24 hours to reach their full strength.

They are water resistant

Although it can be thinned with water to varying degrees, once dry it is completely water-resistant and will not cause damage. However, some people recommend diluting with other colors, pastes, or homemade solvents for special effects. 

Easy to clean

Painting the figures can be exciting, but picking everything up is not so exciting.

They are very easy to clean and all traces of airbrush and brushes can be removed with soap. It is also possible to use alcohol, or your own cleaners such as Airbrush Cleaner or Paint Remover from Green Stuff World, which will be very effective. 

They are less toxic

There are many types of water based acrylic paints made from natural pigments that contain fewer chemicals than other types of oil or synthetic. Whatever type of product you use, take the necessary measures such as painting with good ventilation and using filter masks if necessary.

Can be applied perfectly with a hobby brush

Some people claim that water based acrylic paints should only be applied with airbrushrd. However, this is not entirely true, because if you do not dilute them, or if you are using a slightly diluted version, you can paint with a paintbrush perfectly well, obtaining very fine and detailed results. 

If you prefer airbrushing, they are also suitable, but only if the texture is similar to milk. You should dilute them, both metallic paint and non-metallic ones until they reach a milky texture. A trick is to always put the thinner into the airbrush before the paint. This will prevent clogging in the airbrush.

Acrylic paints for modeling

There is a wide variety

A wide variety of colors and finishes can be found, which offers an open world of possibilities for your figures and scenery. The most popular finish for models, dioramas, or even nativity scenes will be the matt finish. If you don't have this effect, you can rectify your finish with our varnish ultramate - Maxx Matt.

They are cheap

When compared to other types, we realize that water based acrylic paints stand out for their price, which is lower and makes them advantageous for the final quality. 

In our online shop, you will find a wide range of excellent quality to use with a paintbrush or airbrush and give a unique style to your figures and miniatures. 

Can you use acrylic paint for miniatures?

Yes, they can be used for color painting miniatures, they are a popular choice among miniature painters due to their versatility, ease of use, and availability in a wide range of colors. Because of their nature, they dry quickly and can be thinned with water or other specific mediums to achieve different effects.

When using them with miniatures, it's generally recommended to thin the paint slightly to achieve smoother and more controlled brushstrokes. Thinning them also helps prevent obscuring fine details on the miniature.

To enhance the durability, it's advisable to apply a primer or base coat to create a good surface for the paint to adhere to. After painting, it's also a good idea to seal the finished miniature with a clear varnish or sealer to protect the paint and prevent it from chipping or rubbing off.

Overall, acrylic paint offers a great balance between quality, ease of use, and versatility, making it a popular choice for painting miniatures.

What is the difference between acrylic paint and enamel paint?

The main difference lies in their chemical composition and drying properties. 

Acrylic paint is composed mainly of pigments suspended in a water-based medium and acrylic polymers. This means that it cleans up easily with water and does not emit strong toxic odors. It is also less likely to cause allergic reactions or skin and respiratory tract irritations.

Its drying time is much faster than enamels. It dries quickly in the air, which means that you can work with successive coats and make corrections more easily. This is especially useful for techniques such as gradient and wash.

Water based acrylic paints tend to be more resistant to humidity and temperature changes. They are less prone to chipping or peeling once they have dried completely.

Enamel paint: Enamels are oil-based or organic solvents, such as turpentine or turpentine. These solvents can be flammable and release toxic fumes, so it is important to use them in well-ventilated areas and with caution. Enamels tend to have a stronger odor and can be more difficult to clean than acrylic paints. They are not recommended for less experienced users or beginners, and absolutely not recommended for children.

However, the drying time is much slower, allowing more working time before the final fixing of the colors completely. This can be beneficial for some aging and shading techniques, as it provides more time to mix and manipulate the colors.

Glazes are often more prone to chipping and may be less resistant to water and humidity. However, their chemical resistance can be useful for certain aging and weathering techniques.

In short, the choice depends on your personal preferences and the techniques you wish to use. Acrylic paints are safer, more versatile, and economical in general, while enamels may be suitable for specific effects and certain more limited applications.

What are the best scale model acrylic paints for beginners?

In miniature painting, selecting suitable water based acrylic paints for beginners is crucial for a smooth start. Consider colors known for their user-friendliness, excellent coverage, and versatile consistency to help novice painters achieve their desired results.

For beginners in the world of scale model painting, Green Stuff World Acrylics stand out as an excellent choice. These acrylics have gained recognition for their user-friendly qualities, making them particularly suitable for those starting their journey in miniature and scale model painting.

Green Stuff World Acrylics offer several advantages for beginners. Firstly, their consistency is well-suited for easy application, allowing novice painters to cover surfaces smoothly. This consistency aids in preventing issues like paint buildup or excessive texture, leading to more even and professional-looking results.

Another key feature of Green Stuff World Acrylics is their vibrant color range, providing beginners with a wide spectrum of options for various projects. This range allows for creativity and experimentation, which is essential for those new to the hobby.

Additionally, Green Stuff World Acrylics come in a convenient dropper bottle design that helps control paint flow and prevents wastage. This feature is particularly handy for beginners learning to manage paint quantities accurately.

How to achieve a smooth finish on miniature models?

To achieve a smooth finish on figure models, consider using model paints such as Green Stuff World acrylics designed for their excellent coverage, smooth application, layering capabilities, and ability to achieve seamless transitions and gradients. 

To achieve a smooth finish on miniature models, it's essential to start with proper preparation. 

  1. Begin by thoroughly cleaning the miniature to remove any dust or oils. 
  2. Then, apply a primer designed for miniatures, which creates a uniform surface that helps the paint adhere smoothly. 
  3. When painting, use thin layers of paint, allowing each layer to dry completely before applying the next. 
  4. Thin paint not only provides better coverage but also prevents texture and detail loss. 
  5. Invest in high-quality brushes with fine tips for precise control, and keep them clean to avoid stray bristles or dried paint affecting your work.
  6. Utilize techniques like wet blending and glazing to create seamless transitions between colors, and pay close attention to detail work for a polished look.
  7. Finally, seal your miniature with an appropriate varnish to protect the finish and enhance its overall appearance. 

Achieving a smooth finish on miniatures requires patience, practice, and attention to detail, but the results can be stunning and professional.

What are the differences between miniature model paints and regular acrylic paints?

Miniature model paints differ from regular acrylics in terms of pigment size, consistency, color range, opacity, drying time, and the inclusion of specialized effects. Hobby paints cater specifically to the needs of miniature painters by offering finer control and a broader color palette for small-scale projects.

  1. Pigment Size: They have been produced with finer pigments to allow for detailed work on small-scale models.
  2. Consistency: They have been formulated with a specific consistency for ease of use and smooth application.
  3. Color Range: They offer a wide range of colors tailored to miniature painting needs, including fantasy and historical themes.
  4. Opacity: They have been formulated either to be more translucent or opaque, allowing for various layering and shading techniques.
  5. Specialized Effects: They include specialized products for effects like washes, metallics, and weathering.

What are some common mistakes to avoid when painting miniatures?

The most common mistakes when painting miniatures will be:

  • Rushing: Take your time; patience leads to better results.
  • Lack of Priming: Skipping primer can lead to poor paint adhesion.
  • Thick Layers: Avoid applying overly thick paint layers, as they obscure details.
  • Neglecting Brushes: Clean and maintain your brushes to preserve their quality, and especially their pointed tips.
  • Overlooking the visible Mold Lines: Remove mold lines and imperfections before painting.
  • Ignoring Color Theory: Learn color theory for effective shading and highlighting.
  • Inconsistent Basecoating: Ensure an even basecoat for smooth layering.
  • Neglecting Highlights: Don't skip highlighting; it adds depth and realism.
  • Overusing Washes: Excessive washes can make the model look dirty rather than shaded.
  • Skipping Sealing: Seal your finished work to protect it from wear and tear.

This is not what you were looking for? discover our acrylic resin, acrylic inks, crackle paint, snow textures, chrome paintspaint sets, paint mat, fluorescent paints or Airbrush Paint.