Slow-dry Acrylic Paint? Of Course!

Way back in the infancy of this blog, I did a post about why acrylic paint is better than oil paint. One of the main reasons why I bat for acrylic (and have adjusted my technique to accommodate it) is because of acrylic’s super-fast drying time. Layering is my jam!

I bought a drying retardant a long time ago and have yet to test it out (I don’t get much playtime, you see 😛 ), but then Genuine Heritage did an amazing thing and released a range of slow-dry acrylics called SLOW PAINT.


Before I go right ahead and tell you about my experience with Slow Paint, you should know a little more about where I live and why I’m looking for alternatives to regular acrylic…

Hot, Dry Summers

The Little Karoo is no joke in summer, with daytime temperatures reaching 38, 40, even 46+ degrees out on the farms, so it came as no surprise that I could actually see how my paint was drying on the brush. I adjusted my schedule so that I was painting at night in summer, but as someone angling for a full-time art career, only painting at night for four months of the year is unsustainable in the long term.

Maybe I should start diluting my acrylics…

So on a particularly warm Sunday a few weeks ago, I whipped out a piece of primed supawood and some colours in the new Heritage Slow Paint and went at it.

First Impressions of Slow Paint

While the Slow Paint has a beautiful viscous texture and is SO easy to blend, the first layer on the acrylic primer didn’t spread very far. As soon as I was painting on top of a first layer of Slow Paint, suddenly it blended well and spread a lot further than it initially did.

Another plus was not having to rinse my brush as often as I do with regular acrylic paint, which meant an uninterrupted painting experience – it also created some new visual effects in terms of not caring about “painting outside the lines”. This paint definitely lends itself to a far more expressive technique than I’m used to with regular acrylic paint.

Second Impressions of Slow Paint

While the blending with Slow Paint was a lot easier and more pleasant than regular acrylic allows, I can’t say that Slow Paint necessarily dries much slower than regular acrylic. However, take my semi-desert location into account before jumping to any conclusions – it may simply have been too hot to be considered ‘average conditions’ for painting with Slow Paint.

What this means is that I will simply have to try again on an average day and report back with a new painting 🙂 I’ll be doing a side-by-side comparison of regular acrylic paint, Slow Paint, and the Genuine Heritage drying retardant. This should be interesting…

Coffee Pot in Slow Paint

In the meantime, this is what I painted… including a visual of the colours so you know what to look for when you buy your own Slow Paint. There is a wide range of colours available. These are 60ml tubes and I used relatively little paint to get approximately 3 layers onto this board.

Rautenbach Art Coffee Pot 2017 slowdry

The colours are awesome and I really had fun with this, in spite of the initial learning curve. I had been tempted to stop halfway through this painting because it really put me in the mood for coffee, but I figured a reward for finishing the painting was in order:

Rautenbach Art Coffee Pot 2017

Have you tried Heritage’s Slow Paint before? If so, what’s your experience been like? Post in the comments below!


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