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Liquitex Professional Satin Varnish, 8-oz
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- Archival; Permanent; Non-Removable; Satin Gloss finish
- Lightweight, non-toxic; Dries to a non-tacky, hard, flexible surface; Non-yellowing and water-resistant when dry
- Includes 8-oz / 237ml bottle of medium
- Intermixable with Liquitex Professional Acrylic Paint Colors and Mediums.
- Conforms to ASTM D4236; Safe for educational use
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Liquitex Acrylic Mediums
In addition to the widest array of Professional and Student colors, Liquitex offers the broadest possible range of acrylic mediums to inspire creativity at every stage of the painting process. We understand that mediums are often a difficult concept to grasp until you actually dive into them, so we’ve tried to simplify usage by classifying products in three distinct categories: Prep, Paint, and Finish.
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There are many misconceptions about whether or not it is necessary to varnish an acrylic painting. As a general rule, you should always varnish your acrylic work when possible. Varnishes are applied over dry paint films and have several purposes. The first and most important function is to protect the painting surface from the environment and protect the pigments from ultraviolet light. Secondly, varnishes can be used to change or unify a painting’s surface sheen. Liquitex varnishes come in several different sheens, which can all be intermixed for a customized sheen.
Liquitex varnishes are either permanent or removable and can be applied to both flexible and rigid supports.
|Soluvar Gloss Varnish||Soluvar Gloss Varnish Aerosol||Soluvar Matte Varnish||Soluvar Matte Varnish Aerosol|
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|Excellent leveling properties||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|Clear in the wet state||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|Can be used on oil & acrylic paintings||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|Remove with mineral spirits or turpentine||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|Contains UV light stabilizers||✓||✓||✓||✓|
Liquitex offers the broadest range of acrylic mediums to inspire creativity at every stage of the painting process. Varnish Mediums protect the painting surface from the environment and protect the pigments from ultraviolet light. Additionally, varnishes can be used to change or unify a painting’s surface sheen. Liquitex varnishes come in several different sheens which can all be intermixed for a customized sheen. Liquitex Archival Permanent Varnish Finishing Medium is a low-odor, permanent and durable medium with water-based technology, translucent when wet, clear when dry. Resists discoloring (non-yellowing, non-fogging) due to humidity heat and ultraviolet light. Can be used with Spray Paint, Heavy Body, Soft Body. Dries to a non-tacky, hard, flexible surface that is resistant to dirt retention. Hard, archival, non-yellowing and water-resistant when dry. Protects acrylic color from harsh elements. For interior and exterior use. APPLICATION: Apply as a final varnish over dry acrylic paint. Varnish surface and environment must be clean, dry and dust free. Acrylic paintings must be completely dried and cured for 48-72 hours before varnishing. Application may be done by brush or spray. Generally a sprayed application will be thinner, smoother and more even. Rolling or sponging application is not recommended. Caution: Acrylic paints and mediums become increasingly brittle in cold weather. Do not apply below 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Visit our Liquitex Amazon Storefront for full product assortment.
Top customer reviews
But I have run experiments where I test various varnishes side by side on the same substrates. Here's how...
I paint acrylic patches in primaries, secondaries and gradient washes, wait for them to dry completely, cover half the samples with tape, then apply one coat of varnish at a time. I spray at the same distance, the same angle, same direction and the same speed. When each coat is dry, I examine it by eye under good lighting AND photograph it for later comparison in photo editing software.
Here's what I've noticed:
Krylon is very good but it requires five coats to get the same gloss and coverage that Liquitex does in three. If your spraying technique is less than perfect, thinner coats with Krylon might provide an advantage! The Krylon dries slightly faster so it can save some time between coats, (about ten minutes) but the Liquitex has better adhesion, more even coverage and less tendency to run. Since Liquitex takes fewer coats, it is the overall speed champion too.
Golden is almost as clear, adheres well (does not run easily) and dries fast, but it costs more. The Golden brand gloss seems to have a golden cast in color too. It is VERY slight and you won't see it when the finish is new or under poor lighting. Under fluorescent bulbs, there is no noticeable difference. But after some time and with good full-spectrum lighting, you CAN see differences. Golden seems to warm up reds and yellows. If you want that effect for bright red or yellow floral paintings, that might be desirable! Otherwise, it usually is not.
Grumbacher and WN varnishes are decent and slightly cheaper than liquitex, but since I need less of the Liquitex to achieve the same level of gloss, the Liquitex ends up being more economical. It's just like the difference between professional paint and student paint. Sure, the pro-stuff cost more per tube, but you get more pigment, so it goes farther. Well, although there is no "pigment" in varnish, the ingredients still matter. Liquitex is purer and does the job faster. That saves time and money.
Grumbacher has more tendency to yellow over time.
WN varnish does not yellow, but becomes turbid in thick applications. Since it requires more coats to achieve the same level of internal refraction, that turbidity is noticeable.
I also check the colors under 4500 to 5400K lighting. By removing the masking tape, I can see the effect of each varnish on each color sample.
All these good brands provide good protection. All these clear gloss varnishes do a decent job of enhancing color, but I notice that on any mixture with blues (purples, greens) the liquitex really POPS the colors more.
Perhaps you know that BLUE is a higher wavelength of light. Therefore it takes a finer size of particulate matter to refract blue.
The Liquitex varnish has a slight blueish cast when you see it in a thick glob. (as in the fluid form from the jar)
Perhaps this is due to its finer particulate formula or manufacturing processes or some ingredient. Either way, Liquitex enhances colors without changing their temperature and the difficult litmus-test in BLUE family of colors remains brilliant, saturated, value and hue-accurate. Colors look "wet" and intense, but do not darken or lighten comparitively.
Also, the liquitex varnish does not change the warm or cool character of mixes. This effect can be photgraphed and then measured by placing photographs of the samples into photoshop (or any other digital imaging software that accepts HIGH RES JPEGs) then sampling the color patches.
To insure my photography technique does not influence these tests, I rotate the samples 180 degrees and place them in the exact same spot under the exact same lighting. Each little sample is only one inch anyway, but I do that just to be sure I am not skewing results.
With the naked eye these effects are subtle, especially when the varnish is fresh. Wait one month, photograph the samples again and use your software to pinpoint samples of the various varnishes. THEN you will see!
Liquitex is the "clear" winner. (pardon the pun)
It dries clear and STAYS clear like clean glass. (actually BETTER than glass!) It has a higher level of gloss, which increases the internal refraction index of the film. That, in turn, makes the colors achieve higher luminance and saturation. Even if your monitor is not expensive and the room you view photos in has poor lighting or wierd colored walls and furniture, the software will show you the difference.
So, for overall value, color enhancement and ease of use, Liquitex varnish is my first choice. The others are good too, so you won't need to worry if that's what you already have. But sometime you owe it to yourself to at least try one can of the Liquitex. Try these experiments if you're scientifically inclined. Or just view your color samples by eye under sufficient illumination. Either way, I think you'll see the difference.
Regarding another review and the spray nozzle or "bad can" problem...
Absolutely ALL spray cans do that. Technique is paramount for professional results.
We must understand that unlike a professional spray gun or air-brush, internal pressure of a can changes as we use the product. Even professional spray equipment clogs and spatters occasionally. That's when we know it is time to STOP, clean the tip, then try again.
With spray cans, timing is important if you want to get all or almost all of the product from the can. By shaking the can (as you must before each use) you can feel how much is left. If there is little product left, then you can be sure there is also less pressure available to push it out.
Therefore, shaking the can thoroughly for two full minutes at 70 degrees F, will help. In fact, although most directions do not mention this, I know that heat from your hands transfers to the can.
So even in a cold studio, shaking the can BY HAND for two full minutes helps warm up the internal temperature of the varnish.
(After asking my local paint store guy to put my spray can in his machine, I discovered that machine-shaking does not work as well! Shake BY HAND for TWO FULL minutes.)
Always use a freshly cleaned nozzle and spray until the first sign of spatter occurs. Do NOT let up on the tip for more than a few seconds. Varnish dries fast, so we don't want to give globules a chance to form. I keep a lint-free rag soaked in turpentine handy and wipe the nozzle anytime I must pause painting. This method insures you get most of the varnish ( or any other spray paint) out of any can by any brand.
I know from experience that Krylon, Liquitex and Golden ALL have good nozzles... so I doubt that is the problem.
Montana and Liquitex have the BEST nozzles and the best variety of nozzles too. (especially for artists!)
I have painted cars and boats and hundreds of woodworking projects with liquitex and krylon paint, and the results were indistinguishable from pro-painting equipment. Except for one time I dropped a can from scaffolding, I have never had a tip-failure with any of these brands. I've been using spray cans for one thing or another for about five decades now.
Temperature, timing, technique and THOROUGH SHAKING will help, no matter what brand you use. Alway clean the tip after use and if you must, soak the tip in turpentine or mineral spirits to clean it. But whatever you do, do NOT use a wire to unclog the tip. That inevitably damages the finely-made hole in the tip and WILL cause spatters. As far as I can tell, wire never works well.
I hope that helps anyone reading this and GOOD LUCK with your spray finishing!
A word of advice:
This stuff needs something with texture to grab on to, otherwise, it won't work very well at all. For example, I had painted the hair of one POP but not the face. The hair gripped the varnish perfectly, leaving a nice, even coat. The face, however, didn't stay coated. It was like water on plastic. What finally worked is I coated the entire POP in a spray sealant and let it dry to its final, sticky form. The POP was then ready to to be coated with this glorious varnish and, by golly, it worked like a charm.
The one complaint I have is that on my first can, I clogged the nozzle after only using half the can. I forgot the recommended practice of inverting the can and discharging the propellant until you get a clear mist. This clears the nozzle so it doesn't harden inside. Now I make sure to do that. In the case of the clogged nozzle, I just replaced it with another and went back to work.
This varnish goes on smooth and easy. I use a fine-bristle, wide brush and the application is effortless. It dries fairly quickly and evenly, with no noticeable brush strokes. (Make sure your surface is flat, not upright.)
A quick heads-up: I'm using the semi-gloss and it's got a pretty good sheen to it. If you don't want your finished product to be too shiny, limit the number of coats.