Basecoats for Metallic Paints

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Dry Brushing a Flat Base

Took me awhile to realize that the mica based metallic paints can be toned by the color and shade of the base coat underneath.  Although the paints may appear opaque they are actually translucent, especially the lighter colors and when sprayed.  At the end of the post Whimsicle Curves and Spirals Part One,  I had three different colored base coats of flat colors brushed on the primed metal.  The colors were chosen to get the most mileage of the top coat.  I picked a magent for the pearl magenta, ultramarine blue for the pearl blue, and a few coats of brownish yellow and yellow for the lime green pearl sphere. 

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Light Coating For Good Adhesion

The results of those finishes can be seen on the second part of the whimsicle curves post.  This post will concern itself with the support base for the whimiscle curve sculpture.   I carefully added black to titanium white student grade paint until I got the medium gray shown above.  I thinned with enough water to aid in leveling while drybrushing to limit creating brush stroke texture.  I did not completely cover the primer 100% but I did prvoide enough base coat to tone the final silver coat as will as lay down a foundation to aid in adhesion.

The oil based primer that I applied is designed to accept both water based and oil based paints.  Even so, there are times when the first coats of  a sprayed coating of water based paint may be mildly repelled by the alkyd resin in the primer.  This can be seen in the higher peaks and protusions losing coverage to the pits and low level points on the surface.  For this reason, it is best to start with very light coats of sprayed finish.  My theory is that these paints are extensively thinned to pass through the spray equipment and the wetting agents may be compromised.  By dry brushing a base coat with a coarse brush, an acrylic matrix is formed when dry ready to accept the next coating.  As long as you do not add any mediums, the student grade paints dry to a nice satin finish.  This type of finish is what you need for subsequent coats of sprayed paints.

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Createx Pearl Silver Applied

Here is the support base with a top coat of Createx Pearl Silver airbrsuh paint.  The gray under coat medrated the silver and toned it to a medium silver.  It is a nice color that goes with the theme of the entire composition without stealing the focus.

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