Colouring Art Objects
The natural colour of Agnew’s Water Putty is a light ivory. But you can give it any color you wish.
Colour Agnew’s Water Putty throughout before mixing it with water by adding oxide, powdered tempera or dry earth powders such as umbers, siennas, and other colors. Acrylic, latex paints, RIT®, Tintex, and coloring matter which will mix with water are also suitable. Do not use oil-base products, since oil and water do not mix and the putty will not harden.
Be careful if you need to add a great deal of colouring as it may affect the hardness of the dried putty. Check hardness by experimenting with a little bit of Agnew’s and the desired colouring agent before you start your project.
If you don’t need the colour all the way through your project, you can paint Agnew’s Putty after it has dried. In fact, you can use water-based or oil-based paints on dried Agnew’s.
One fun technique is to apply two coats of shellac thinned with alcohol. While the second coat is still tacky, bronze powder or dry colours may be dusted on. Or wait until the shellac is dry and apply a thin wash of oil paint thinned with turpentine. Acrylic paint may also be used, but the surface should be primed first with an acrylic primer. Interesting effects may be obtained by applying a bronze solution over or under washes of acrylic or oil paint. Your art, craft, or hobby store can supply glazes for giving various antique effects and can usually offer other helpful suggestions.
Stain cannot penetrate dried Agnew’s Water Putty. If you wish to use stain for colour, mix it with Agnew’s when you make your batch.
For exact colours, weigh Agnew’s powder and the paint in exact proportions. Sometimes, Agnew’s can get compacted during shipping and the 3-to-1 mixing ratio may be skewed by compacted powder.