When I heard about Genesis heat-set oils, I was curious to try them out, and since I am incredibly efficient and proactive, it's only taken me two years or so to get around to doing something about it. Anyway, I just ordered the starter set to see what they're like, and here it is in all its glory...

  It comes in a case with instructions, 5 basic colours, a jar of medium, and a heat gun for drying the paint. The general idea is that this paint stays wet and workable until it is dried by radiant heat - it dries instantly when heated to a particular temperature and can be worked over straight away.  I thought this might be potentially the best of both worlds - the workability of oils combined with the speed of acrylics. When I started investigating, though, I couldn't find much on the www about whether these paints were the best thing since sliced cheese or a dreary waste of time.  The fact that there isn't much out there may be an ominous sign, or it may just be that they're not widely known. Anyway, I thought somebody out there might find it useful if I posted a little bit about my adventures in Genesis-land.

The possible benefits are:

The paint is non-toxic and cleans up in water, and will never dry out on your brushes.  There's less waste because it doesn't dry on the palette either - just sits there till you've used it all up, the dog walks in it, or it gets covered in bits of fluff and dust-bunnies, whichever happens first.  All are equally likely in my house. It apparently feels a lot like oils to use, and I am partial to oils (not that I really know how to use them!) It can be thinned with either odourless solvent or Genesis medium - they have a decent range of mediums and varnishes. They also have great customer service and are really easy to order online.

The possible drawbacks are:

It may not have a nice finish, or the colours may be off or dull. I wouldn't know, because I haven't even had a chance to uncork the jars yet. It's only compatible with certain surfaces - it apparently reacts badly to some plastics and some brands of acrylic gesso. I may be restricted to painting on gessoed board, canvas, or metal, and it might be tricky to find a surface it will work with that is also flexible enough for drum scanning.

We'll see... tune in for the next exciting episode when I actually OPEN the POTS OF PAINT! (Gasp!)

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