Craft vs Artist acrylic paint

Since starting on this art journey, I have mostly used
artist grade paints, Golden to be specific. 
I started out with a bunch of Liquitex Basics,
a student grade series...and they performed ok.
I started picking up Golden's Fluid Acyrlics at Michael's
with a 40% off coupon and fell in love. Now I'm a 
paint snob :) Today I found a couple of bottles of craft
paint hidden under my bed, and decided to REALLY see
what the difference is between these bottles of paint, 
besides the price of course.
I know there are art journalers out there who do use
craft paint, and they make wonderful and amazing things.
If the muse is within you, it will come out no matter
what tools you do or don't have.
My muse is a tiny, scared thing. It doesn't
like to come out very often.
I feel better knowing that at least I am using quality
paints. Plus, they just glide over pages and canvas.
They are transparent and mix beautifully.
They are bright. Bold.
All things I love. 

But, I decided I wanted to test out craft paint anyway. 
I didn't do anything more than paint swatches of similar
colors next to each other. I didn't test other techniques or
pens on top. Maybe I will.

Here are the results


The reds are definitely the most obvious. I used probably twice the amount of
red craft paint than the red Golden paint. Besides it covering less area,
look at the difference in pigment! The Golden just pops off the page,
bright and in your face. The craft looks watered down.
The green craft paint definitely was brighter compared
to the green I made with Golden paints. 
(the craft is the left, Golden, right)
They weren't the same shade because
it was hard to mix that color, but something
that you can't tell by looking at the screen, 
is how they feel to the touch.
The craft paint is chalky, matte finish.
The Golden is more glossy and a smoother finish.

To each his own, right?

Next I have a journal spread in my new "big" journal.
These pages were inspired by Dina Wakley 
Her art journals are A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. 
Check her out.




  1. Hi, found your blog via flickr. I love love love it! I am art-journal-obsessed as well!

  2. Great post! It's ok to be a paint snob, everyone has thier favourites. As for me, I use it all... and on the same page a lot of the time. :)
    Great pages, so much yummy texture! I love DW too.
    Much Love

  3. These pages are fantastic!

    I started with craft paints. It was nice to be able to get started cheaply, but once I tried my first Golden paints (heavy body) I couldn't go back! The difference is huge! I did however recently pick up some Liquitex basic in black & white for underpaintings in an effort to save $$.