Egg Tempera Forums

Go Back   Egg Tempera Forums > The Forums > The Forum for Tempera Painting Issues

The Forum for Tempera Painting Issues Sharing the knowledge and experience of fellow tempera painters.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 11-02-08, 10:23 AM
jpohl's Avatar
jpohl jpohl is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NWT, Canada
Posts: 246
Question Dispersions

This may be a silly question, but how do you use them? and are there any particular pigment dispersion I should avoid? Which ones would be especially helpful? I should wait till spring though, or they'll arrive as ice cubes. :blushing:
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 11-02-08, 03:17 PM
JeffG's Avatar
JeffG JeffG is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jan 1970
Location: US (NJ)
Posts: 121
Default

I have a few dispersions/concentrates. The dispersions I have from Kama pigments are completely liquid, in small dropper bottles like food coloring. The concentrates I have from Kremer pigments are more like thick pastes, sort of like how one is supposed to keep pigments in jars with water.

I only buy them for those pigments that are difficult to disperse in water, since I don't like grinding pigments myself or keeping them in water all the time. In my attempts to do that, my water-mixed pigments tend to dry out, get moldy, etc. The being said, my most useful pigments, by far, are those that are easily used dry, and the difficult-to-mix ones, although I like to have them on hand, are used very rarely. Pthalo blue & green and permanent red are the most useful ones I have. I also like Kremer's Irgazine Yellow, greenish, which is really more of a green than a yellow and a nice natural-looking transparent green thats hard to mix otherwise.

I simply mix them with the egg yolk. I'm not all that precise in mixing my paint, just whatever works. The liquid dispersions in particular are extremely concentrated, and it usuall takes less than a drop for my needs.
__________________
Jeff G
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 11-02-08, 07:23 PM
jpohl's Avatar
jpohl jpohl is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NWT, Canada
Posts: 246
Default

Thank you so very much!

I'd love to hear other people's experience with them as I've come across so little in books so far. (My studio doubles as a dining room in the center of an open concept house... and with a one year old and three year running around I have to be especially carefully. Not to mention save time where I can... anything to get me to the easel more quickly!)

How do they tend to compare to the mixed pigments in quality when you lay them down?
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 24-02-08, 05:29 AM
paintrman's Avatar
paintrman paintrman is offline
Kelley Vandiver
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
Posts: 95
Default jpohl

Dear jpohl, this is an important topic for me as well because I have been having a terrible time with MOLD! I spent days grinding all my dry pigments with water and then carefully labeling them and then...the dreaded mold happened. I lost 5 jars just this week. I wrote to the paint company I bought my dry pigment from and they told me that the pigment should still be good even though it's moldy. I pointed out that the color was now gray...not yellow ochre anymore! To get to the point, they want to sell me an additive that turns out can't be mailed to Mexico, so that won't work. I wrote to the genius, Bruce MacEvoy...check out his website about paint, it's overwhelming and informative at the same time http://www.handprint.com/HP/WCL/waterfs.html
and he pointed out that watercolors and gouaches, which need to stay wet in their tubes, contain a fungicide. I asked him about dispersions and he said that he thought they would have to have fungicides in them as well. This is a good thing since losing so much paint to mold is horrible (not to mention expensive!). I ordered some dispersions from Guerra, which is listed on the Society links page. I got it for an experiment I am working on but today I tried using it for the first time on a painting. Oh boy, it's different from the paint I have in jars. I think I will be able to explain this "difference" later on after using it more. The type Guerra sells is the thick type in plastic squeeze bottles. It's very convenient to use and if it's true that it won't mold, looks like an ideal solution to my problem. I only bought 5 colors in dispersions but I might just have to add to that list the colors I lost to mold!

The colors I would order in dispersions would be yellow ochre which loves mold. Phthalo blue because it gets on everything and is staining. The quinacridones (pink, magenta, and red) because they mold. Believe it or not but for me, titanium white grows mold.. Irgazine red...mold. Verona Green Earth...mold.

I wish somebody with some experience with dispersions would explain how the additive that keeps the pigment from settling to the bottom of the container effects the final painting.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 24-02-08, 06:24 PM
PhilS's Avatar
PhilS PhilS is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Sargentville, Maine
Posts: 222
Default

I just finished a painting using pigments I purchased from Guerra during my recent visit to NYC. (It's a tiny little store selling only pigments and mediums). My initial impression is that they are well worth purchasing. They seem smoother and creamier than the powdered pigments I have been keeping in paste form, though that could be my imagination. If mold is a problem, paintrman, try refrigerating them. (jpohl, you'd have to keep your 3-year-old out of the refrigerator...). I don't know if they add anything to retard mold or aid dispersion. The owner wasn't there when I arrived, just someone minding the register. I've never had much luck getting cadmium red to disperse into water but the bottle I bought from Guerra seems to work fine... I suspect they add something. They assured me they were appropriate for ET.
Phil
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 25-02-08, 12:53 AM
John's Avatar
John John is offline
painter
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Canada
Posts: 16
Default

I don't go into my ground pigments in water much now a days but when I do I am always amazed to note that they are all mold free. Most of the colours are about 20 years old. Maybe it's the glass jars - they are those brown medical jars, sad thing is that the plastic lids are starting to become very brittle.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 25-02-08, 08:49 AM
jpohl's Avatar
jpohl jpohl is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NWT, Canada
Posts: 246
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by paintrman View Post
Dear jpohl, this is an important topic for me as well because I have been having a terrible time with MOLD! I spent days grinding all my dry pigments with water and then carefully labeling them and then...the dreaded mold happened. I lost 5 jars just this week. I wrote to the paint company I bought my dry pigment from and they told me that the pigment should still be good even though it's moldy. I pointed out that the color was now gray...not yellow ochre anymore! To get to the point, they want to sell me an additive that turns out can't be mailed to Mexico, so that won't work. I wrote to the genius, Bruce MacEvoy...check out his website about paint, it's overwhelming and informative at the same time http://www.handprint.com/HP/WCL/waterfs.html
and he pointed out that watercolors and gouaches, which need to stay wet in their tubes, contain a fungicide. I asked him about dispersions and he said that he thought they would have to have fungicides in them as well. This is a good thing since losing so much paint to mold is horrible (not to mention expensive!). I ordered some dispersions from Guerra, which is listed on the Society links page. I got it for an experiment I am working on but today I tried using it for the first time on a painting. Oh boy, it's different from the paint I have in jars. I think I will be able to explain this "difference" later on after using it more. The type Guerra sells is the thick type in plastic squeeze bottles. It's very convenient to use and if it's true that it won't mold, looks like an ideal solution to my problem. I only bought 5 colors in dispersions but I might just have to add to that list the colors I lost to mold!

The colors I would order in dispersions would be yellow ochre which loves mold. Phthalo blue because it gets on everything and is staining. The quinacridones (pink, magenta, and red) because they mold. Believe it or not but for me, titanium white grows mold.. Irgazine red...mold. Verona Green Earth...mold.

I wish somebody with some experience with dispersions would explain how the additive that keeps the pigment from settling to the bottom of the container effects the final painting.
This is very interesting timing.. just today I emailed kama pigments to ask about the shelf life of their dispersions...unfortunately the email bounced back, so I have to check the address again.

Somebody said they used a drop of listerine to end their mold problem, and another artist seemed to find they had no problem with baby food bottles. What were you storing your pigments in? I wonder if environment and climate makes a difference, beyond storing things in water. Things are very arid here so I'm hoping that might help, or maybe the difference could be in making the sure the bottles are sanitized extremely well. Just musing.. I have no way of knowing. The tip about listerine seems worth trying, but I have to wonder about the sugar and colouring... but perhaps only a very little drop might not hurt... if you do a search you'll find the post about it if it helps. it does give a whole new meaning to their superhero commercial though...

Would love to hear how it works out...

I understand Sinopia carries some dispersions, but they are not listed on their website. Something I have to look into... I have to balance cost with doing the healthy thing. Trying to figure out how much pigment is in the dispersions. By that I mean when kama lists something as 2 oz are they including water weight? Also wondering how long a dispersion will last... how far it will stretch, and if mold become a problem over time?

I don't think using the fridge is a very good option for me.. my husband loves to cook too well, and the condiments, most of which I don't recognize have taken over. Maybe a mini fridge just for pigments is an option for some people if mold is an ongoing problem? Now and then you find them at a good price. I might consider it in time.. but will have to see how things go.

Still looking forward to my realgesso panels and kolinksy brushes arriving... by the time i'm ready for colour I won't have to order pigment ice cubes... or so i hope. Very excited...

p.s. with regards to pigments staining from mulling... I have found very little that the mr.clean magic erase blocks aren't able to deal with so it might be worth a try if staining is a problem.. i used a very little piece to clean off the egg/oil emulsion off the plexiglass and it worked like a dream with every colour.

Will have to build my dispersion and pigment palate as I can afford it... will be a little frustrating at first, but appreciate that it will be much cheaper than oil in the long run. And what colours there are... I can hardly wait..

Last edited by jpohl; 25-02-08 at 09:02 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 25-02-08, 03:13 PM
paintrman's Avatar
paintrman paintrman is offline
Kelley Vandiver
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
Posts: 95
Default

Unfortunately, I am the one that started the whole "Listerine" mess. I contacted a friend that works in a laboratory that recommended it. It turns out that it's great to add to egg solutions but not to paint. Believe me, I wanted it to work! I also store my pigment pastes in baby food jars. They work very well and I don't have any problems with evaporation. However, the listerine doesn't seem to stop the mold. The problem might be that once the pigment is infected, you can't get rid of it...I don't know. I keep at least an inch of pure distilled water over the pigment because I read somewhere that it would inhibit mold but it doesn't really.

Phil, I am in total shock that I didn't think of the refrigerator. You see, I have a small dorm-sized refrigerator under my drafting table and it never occurred to me to put my paints in it!!!!!!! LOL.

I am going to call Guerra tonight and see what happens. I am also going to call Natural Pigments because they are the ones that recommended Phenol.

Thanks all for your suggestions. Good luck to you jpohl!
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 26-02-08, 07:48 PM
jpohl's Avatar
jpohl jpohl is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NWT, Canada
Posts: 246
Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by paintrman View Post
Unfortunately, I am the one that started the whole "Listerine" mess. I contacted a friend that works in a laboratory that recommended it. It turns out that it's great to add to egg solutions but not to paint. Believe me, I wanted it to work! I also store my pigment pastes in baby food jars. They work very well and I don't have any problems with evaporation. However, the listerine doesn't seem to stop the mold. The problem might be that once the pigment is infected, you can't get rid of it...I don't know. I keep at least an inch of pure distilled water over the pigment because I read somewhere that it would inhibit mold but it doesn't really.

Phil, I am in total shock that I didn't think of the refrigerator. You see, I have a small dorm-sized refrigerator under my drafting table and it never occurred to me to put my paints in it!!!!!!! LOL.

I am going to call Guerra tonight and see what happens. I am also going to call Natural Pigments because they are the ones that recommended Phenol.

Thanks all for your suggestions. Good luck to you jpohl!
well thank you so much for posting again, or I very well may have tried it? a mini fridge does seem like a good investment. I'll have to consider it seriously... but right now looking at the cost of pigments from sinopia (14 dollars for a chart!! are any of them worth it? maybe i'll be better off with small samples) and wondering how best to budget. I've emailed them about dispersions, but imagine the price will be through the roof compared to pigments... as much as I want to take every precaution to protect my family's health.

Have to wonder why one person doesn't have problems with baby jars and another does. Is it climate? were the bottles in sunlight? We generally don't have any household mold problems here compared to marine environments where I've lived before, so hoping I'll be lucky. I'm so sorry you've had such a frustrating time with the pigments, but at least you have a fridge ready to go! Maybe it's a sign ... and why do I have visions of a fridge in the shape of an egg instead of a coke can? As my aunt is so fond of saying "all for a purpose."

I wonder if one supplier's pigments is less likely cause problems than another. Have people had problems from more than one source of pigment, or more with one in particular?

If anyone knows something about the shelf life of dispersions I'd love to hear it.

I noticed that kama was offering something called a dispersion kit. Not sure if that is to help people make their own dispersions, and if there is any anti mold agent included. I'll have to check into it...

Thanks again.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 27-02-08, 03:14 PM
dbclemons dbclemons is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 228
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jpohl View Post
...If anyone knows something about the shelf life of dispersions I'd love to hear it.

I noticed that kama was offering something called a dispersion kit. Not sure if that is to help people make their own dispersions, and if there is any anti mold agent included. I'll have to check into it...
The Kama kits are just different packaging of samples at a smaller size (15ml rather than 60ml.) with a jar of gum arabic for making watercolor and a bottle for mixing. I got the "intermediate" kit and still have a few of them after several years. I don't know what they do to mix them up, only that their catalog says no fillers or extenders. I don't smell any odor. Thymol crystals can be used as a fungicide, and I know a person that does bookbinding who uses them. She just places moldy books in a plastic bag with the crystals for a couple days, and the mold is gone, or so she says (I've not tried it.)
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 06:50 PM.
Design modifications, graphics and CSS by RobM
June 2010



Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.