3 Gallons of Paint


This week my paint came in! I had been using the paint that we already have in the art studio, which from Daler-Rowney’s Acrylic series, but I prefer my Utrecht palette, so I ordered my own set of paints just for this project. As you can see in the picture above, I ordered 18 pints and 3 quarts of paint (which, if I did my calculations correctly, is 3 gallons of acrylic paint). The colors that I ordered quarts of are Titanium White, Naples Yellow, and Yellow Ochre, because they are colors that I use a lot of, especially in skin tones.


I dotted the tops of my jars with the paints so I can easily locate the color I need. 

I chose to use acrylic for this project because it’s cheaper than oil paint and has a lot less fumes. Acrylic paint is water based, and as the water evaporates the paint dries, and the polymers harden and bind the pigments. There’s a lot more really fascinating chemistry that goes into the making paints, some of which can be found here if you’re interested.


I wasn’t able to make a lot of progress this week because there were evening rehearsals for the play. I did, however, just finish washing on skin tones for all of my dancers (similar to how I did the background). The point of these washes isn’t to make any permanent decisions about exact values and tones, it is more to just get initial color on the canvas. It’s really important to work over the entire piece when you first start out to make sure that it’s all cohesive. I was taught to not finish sections at a time, because then you can get stuck with parts that aren’t communicating and relating to one another well, and sometimes that can be difficult and time consuming to fix.

This week and next I am free in the afternoons, so I anticipate being able to get a lot of work done then. I hope to add the final sections of color (in the leotards) tomorrow, as well as the vines. The rest of the week will be spent beginning to go into smaller details on specific dancers.


The initial washes of color are very rough and not all that pretty, but it is really important to establish the initial base values in order to move forward.


3 thoughts on “3 Gallons of Paint

  1. wbdrisco

    It seems like you’re really picking up speed here, which is awesome! I know it’s unrelated to your post today, but if you were to finish ahead of schedule, what might you focus on related to the project? I know the mural is going to be in a pretty public place, and I’m wondering if you might do anything else to help showcase it to the greater community?

  2. anrowshan

    Every time I read your posts, your progress astounds me! The colors look incredible. Are there any pros to acrylic paint in terms of looks? Or do acrylic and oil paint look very similar on canvas?

  3. willmanidis

    It’s astonishing to see the progress you are making. Just purely out of interest what is the lifespan of Acrylic paint like? Will your mural hold its color in five years? ten? twenty?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.