With Derivan Matisse powders, grits, beads and flakes you can create your own custom texture pastes. You can paint with a wide variety of texture effects in your acrylic or oil paintings by adding a dry medium to your gesso, paint or acrylic medium.
Most often seen in acrylic gels and pastes, the many sizes and shapes of texture particles can create a jagged or smooth bumpy surface (with small or large bumps), or add tooth that can then be used with pastel or graphite. Mica flakes will add shimmer, shiny black flakes add glitter and glass beads add sparkle. You can even get particles in pastes that add structural body without weight because the particles are hollow spheres. Now you can get all these particles in a dry form to add to your own gel or paste to create customised texture pastes. You can also add them directly to acrylic colour. They can even be added to oil colour.
I did some testing of the 18 Derivan Matisse Dry Mediums to see what they would do.
I have grouped them according to their general usage, but you can get creative and find additional uses for them.
I mixed them with different acrylic gels and acrylic colour, oil colour and oil painting mediums, and I tried sprinkling them on top when it seemed appropriate. I found that the mouth of the little jars was too narrow for a teaspoon so I modified one of our pipettes to be a scoop. Be prepared that some of the particles are fiddly to control or they might get everywhere and with the powders, as with all powders, take care not to breath them in.
(click on images for larger views)
To add coarse texture – from fine sand to gravel – to paint or painting medium
Mixed into acrylic paint or gel. Can also mix into oils.
- Lang Lang Sand in four sizes: 0.5mm, 1mm, 3mm, 5mm
- Lang Lang Gravel 7mm
- Calcined Bauxite – these have more flake-shaped particles than the rest of this group, vary in size and are multi-coloured
- Crushed Garnet (similar size to the 1mm sand)
To add tooth, absorbency or fine texture to a surface to use for drawing or painting on
Mixed into paint, gel or gesso. This was an interesting group. Change the amount added to alter the effects.
- Microspheres – amazing stuff. Looks like a powder but is little hollow spheres. Creates a smooth, white, absorbent surface. Also adds body in gesso or acrylic gel for lovely, smooth sculptural effects.
- Pumice – a consistent size of very fine grit, great for creating a soft pastel ground. Makes a brownish colour. Adds some absorbency for paint.
- Wollastonite – a powder, very interesting texture when mixed with gesso, acrylic gel or oil painting alkyd medium. Sort of fibre like and absorbent. Can use up to equal parts medium and powder, using acrylic or oil medium.
- Ground marble – a standard additive for making gesso more toothy, I found this was a bit lumpy, inconsistent fine surface. Adds some absorbency.
To make dark, matte, gritty and metallic
Evidently can be used to create a metallic surface for use with magnets. As it is iron it will rust. I found it felt heavy, like you would expect iron to. It is a fine grit (about the size of table salt), dark and heavy. Could probably be put to interesting uses.
I thought the appearance was quite successful when mixed with Jackson’s Alkyd Oil Medium or with oil colour.
- Ferrous Powder
To add sparkle
Mixed with transparent gels. If mixed with opaque colours they look no different from the sand textures. Some of the sparkle is lost even in transparent acrylic gels, sprinkled on top is best for the most sparkly effect but they need to be embedded to stay on the surface. The mica flakes lost all the sparkle in the oil tests – both alkyd gel and impasto oil mediums.
These two and the ferrous powder were the most difficult to keep from getting everywhere, I kept finding pieces in other places.
- Mica Flakes
- Black Flakes Hex
CLEAR GLASS BEADS
To add shimmer
Look great mixed into transparent gels. When mixed into opaque colours they look like chocolate coated peanut clusters with no shimmer at all, just round lumps. A thin layer works best for shimmer, they can refract light beautifully. I compared them to the Golden Glass Bead Gel and found Golden Glass Bead Gel to be very beautifully dense with beads and the size of the beads was much smaller than the smallest Derivan bead, probably .3 to .4 mm, so the shimmer was finer and very even.
- Glass Beads in four sizes: 0.8mm, 1.5 mm, 3mm, 5mm
I think some of these could be really interesting to work with and you may see some further tests from me in the future.
Click on the underlined link to go to the current offers on the 18 Derivan Matisse Dry Mediums on the Jackson’s Art Supplies website.
Postage on orders shipped standard to mainland UK addresses is free for orders of £39.