Hi Mouna -
Originally Posted by Mouna
What follows is simply a cut and paste of one of the many email replies we give on this topic frequently. As you will see, it is quite long and covers a bit of ground as the topic can mean a lot of different things to different people depending on their needs and expectations. And of course a lot of the advice does revolve around the need to test and experiment with different approaches. Always feel free to contact us directly for further clarity or if you have other questions:
" In general, matte mediums can have a "wax-like" appearance, if mixed and handled in a certain way. We would suggest getting some small clean plastic containers with lids, and mixing various ratios of matte gels and mediums with different amounts of paint. Start with mostly gel/medium and a very small amount of paint ( 95% medium ) to create a glaze mixture. From my experience, translucency combined with a satin or matte sheen is a large part of the "waxy look". Experiment with different ratios. While the method of applying the mixtures is a personal aesthetic and painting technique issue, we find that less manipulation seems to work best. This has a lot to do with not creating foam and bubbles. If you like to handle very fluid paint, try fluid matte medium or (regular )matte medium. If you like to use a palette knife, use a gel, such as Regular Gel ( Matte or Semi-Gloss ). If you want a very thick and pasty material, try our High Solid Gel ( Matte ). Or, any of the other gel mediums that have consistencies or surface sheens that you like. It may take some experimentation to find the medium that has the consistency that you like the best, or you may end up using a variety for different effects.
Apply some with a palette knife to a test surface and let it dry to see how it looks. Remember that when mixing with acrylic mediums, the milky, cloudy look will change considerably when it dries, so the wet mixture color may appear as a pastel/tint, but will dry to a much darker value and higher chroma/intensity color, along with more translucency. The waxy look will develop as the material dries. If you are unfamiliar with this, then there will be surprises, especially if the mixtures are applied thickly. This is one of the challenges to working with thicker acrylic glazes,...learning to anticipate the changes...but the effects one can achieve are well worth it! In part, we find, the wax-like look can be a function of how the paint is handled as well. In our experience, Heavy Gel ( Matte ) glazes, applied with a palette knife have looked very "wax-like".
To mimic the look of beeswax, try blending in a percent or two of the Interference Gold and Quinacridone/Nickel Azo Gold to achieve a "beeswax" look. Experiment with different ratios of these and other yellow or brown colors/pigments, to get a variety of wax-like colors. Very small additions of color to a medium can be very effective, and remember that the color will become darker and more saturated when the medium dries, due to the cloudy appearance of wet acrylic mediums that then become translucent or clear upon drying.
A couple of recipes for you to try are:
8 ounces of High Solid Gel Matte to 1-3 drops of Quinacridone/Nickel Azo Gold to 6 drops of Interference Blue.One last note is that you may wish to start with gloss layers initially as they provide the best optical clarity and depth, and then layer on a thinner film of the Matte product as a means to finish the encaustic effect. Heavy layers of matte products tend to have issues of obscuring the underlying image."
8 ounces of Soft Gel Matte to 2 drops Fluid Naples Yellow Hue to 1 drop Quinacridone/Nickel Azo Gold to 2 drops of Interference Red.
8 ounces of Soft Gel Semi-Gloss to 4 drops of Fluid Interference Blue to 1 drop Fluid Iridescent Gold (Fine). Add water to thin, about 3:1 to make pourable.
8 ounces of Fluid Matte Medium to 4 drops of Fluid Iridescent Bright Gold.
Hope that helps.
Technical Services Supervisor
Golden Artist Colors
Williamsburg Handmade Oil Colors