GOLDEN Airbrush Medium blends easily with other GOLDEN acrylics to yield a paint mixture with the proper viscosity for airbrushing. Airbrush Medium also effectively decreases clogging and tip-buildup during spraying, eliminating the largest drawback to airbrushing with acrylics.
GOLDEN Airbrush Medium is a 100% acrylic binder system designed for modifying the GOLDEN Fluid Acrylics and other GOLDEN Acrylic products for airbrush/spray application. While designed with the Fluid Acrylics in mind, GOLDEN Airbrush Medium will also reduce the Heavy Body, Matte, High Load, Iridescent/Interference and Fluorescent Acrylics for spray applications. GOLDEN Mediums and Gessoes can also be blended with Airbrush Medium for spraying.
This product should not be used alone, and must be mixed with other GOLDEN Acrylic paints, mediums or grounds in the recommended ratios to create a useable material. Very thick or highly textured materials thinned with GOLDEN Airbrush Medium may still be difficult to reduce for conventional spraying and alternative methods of spraying may be required.
Because it is inherently unhealthy to inhale spray mists of any kind, we recommend, at minimum, the use of a NIOSH approved disposable dust and mist respirator. For additional information, please see our saftey section on spaying safely:
Generally, mix equal amounts (by volume) of Airbrush Medium and Fluid Acrylic to result in a useful spraying consistency. More Airbrush Medium or water additions may be used if the mixture does not flow properly (Refer to the Quick Reference Chart below for more complete recommendations).
Gently stir or shake Airbrush Medium to insure homogeneity before blending with GOLDEN Acrylics.
For thinner paint lines, the Airbrush Medium can be added in equal amounts to the paint, and then stirred until well mixed. If using paints thicker than Fluid Acrylics (such as Matte Fluid Acrylics or High Load Acrylics), continue adding more Airbrush Medium up to a 1 part paint to 2 parts Airbrush Medium. Beyond this 1:2 ratio, it is best to add water for more thinning.
Although water can be used with the Airbrush Medium to help thin the paint, it also begins to forfeit some of the spray-ability that this medium enhances, and also creates a weaker paint film. High water additions will cause the paint to become fairly weak, both in pigment load and film strength. Top coating may be necessary depending on the nature of the artwork.
Thicker paints such as Heavy Body Acrylics should be first thinned with water until they reach a pourable consistency. Once the required paint and water mixture is well stirred, begin adding the Airbrush Medium at a ratio of 1 part paint/water to 1 part Airbrush Medium.
Prior to spraying, it may be necessary to strain the diluted mixture (using cheese cloth, nylon pantyhose, or #8 mesh or finer screening fabrics) to remove any large particulate materials and ensure homogeneity and smoothness. In most cases though, Golden Acrylic products are smooth and pigments ground to a uniform particle size.
Mixing products with GOLDEN Airbrush Medium will generate foam. Pre-mix colors at least 5 minutes before use. This will allow time for the foam generated by vigorous shaking to dissipate before spraying. Micro-foam can result in an irregular film.
Add a Mixing Ball:
Add a mixing ball to aid in blending. In GOLDEN Airbrush Colors, a barundum (a barrel-shaped, ceramic piece used in pigment dispersion) is added to facilitate faster and more homogenous mixing. Reuse barundums from old Airbrush Colors bottles, or use a smooth stone, marble, stainless steel nut, etc. to perform this function. This is especially valuable when storing mixtures for future use.
Airbrush Medium also functions as an extender for applications requiring greater transparency and longer open time.We generally do not recommend using the Airbrush Medium with the pre-made GOLDEN Airbrush Colors or High Flow Acrylics because this creates a very slow drying, potentially weaker paint film, with poor frisket performance (color sticking to frisket or masking films) until the film sufficiently dries. When frisketing is of critical importance, use GOLDEN Airbrush Transparent Extender to dilute the Airbrush Colors, High Flow Acrylics, or other acrylics. Transparent Extender is recommended whenever a mixture requires Airbrush Meidum additions greater than 2 parts medium to 1 part paint. This will yield a paint system that dries quickly, “friskets” well, and has excellent sprayability.
Paint on any non-oily surface. Remove oils, grease, or other contaminants before application.
Non-absorbent surfaces should be abraded for increased adhesion.
Keep tools wet during use.
Do not allow product to dry in airbrush.
Clean tools with soap and water.
Clean airbrush with water, ammonia/water, alcohol or miscellaneous household cleaners (however, consider effect of cleaner on airbrush parts, such as rings and seals).
GOLDEN Airbrush Medium can be mixed with GOLDEN Fluid Acrylics to create an excellent fabric paint that does not require heat-setting. A blending ratio of at least 1:1 is recommended. Other GOLDEN Acrylics such as the Heavy Body Acrylics, Iridescent/Interference Colors and Fluorescent Colors can be used as well.
GOLDEN Airbrush Colors and GOLDEN High Flow Acrylics are not recommended for fabric use. However, if using these colors is desired, blend with GAC 900, a thin heat-settable medium expressly designed for fabric applications. This mixture will not perform as well as the Airbrush Medium/Fluid Acrylics mix.
Paint Type (1 Part Paint addition in all mixtures)
Water ( Add in small increments to the paint before additions of Airbrush Medium)
Airbrush Medium (Add after the addition of water, if applicable)
Heavy Body Acrylics
High Load Acrylics
Mediums (GACs, Polymer, Matte)
0-2 parts, depending on product consistency
1-3 parts, depending on product consistency
The above ratios are intended as starting points for use at air pressures of 40 p.s.i. or greater. A greater or lesser amount of Airbrush Medium may be required for your particular equipment and/or application, especially if lower air pressures are used.
Suggested Color Choices for Fluid Acrylics
While every Golden Fluid Acrylic Paint may be used for spray application when blended with the Airbrush Medium, some colors perform better because of their pigment size and structure. Larger pigments, such as Raw Umber and Ultramarine Blue, do not spray well through smaller detail airbrushes. Dense, coarse pigments also tend to settle quickly when thinned to sprayable consistency, so mix small amounts and avoid long term mixture storage.
Below is a listing of Fluid Acrylics with their rating of sprayability next to them.
Suitable for all tip sizes
Alizarin Crimson Hue
Naphthol Red Medium
Naples Yellow Hue
Quinacridone/Nickel Azo Gold
Cadmium Red Medium Hue
Nickel Azo Yellow
Cadmium Yellow Medium Hue
Permanent Green Light
Permanent Violet Dark
Sap Green Hue
Phthalo Blue (Green Shade)
Phthalo Blue (Red Shade)
Phthalo Green (Blue Shade)
Transparent Pyrrole Orange
Phthalo Green (Yellow Shade)
Transparent Red Iron Oxide
Hansa Yellow Light
Prussian Blue Hue
Transparent Yellow Iron Oxide
Hansa Yellow Medium
Hansa Yellow Opaque
VanDyke Brown Hue
Indian Yellow Hue
Pyrrole Red Light
Quinacridone Burnt Orange
Naphthol Red Light
Suitable for tip sizes of .30mm or larger
Micaceous Iron Oxide
Burnt Umber Light
C.T. Interference Green-Blue
C.T. Interference Green-Orange
Iridescent Bright Gold
C.T. Interference Violet-Green
Cerulean Blue Deep
Cerulean Blue, Chromium
Iridescent Copper Light
Chromium Oxide Green
Iridescent Gold Deep
Iridescent Stainless Steel
DO NOT SPRAY-APPLY genuine cadmium pigments or any colors containing zinc white as these have trace amounts of cadmium as well. Cadmium is listed as a chemical known to the State of California to cause cancer.
The following Fluid Acrylics contain Zinc White and should never be sprayed :
The above information is based on research and testing done by
Golden Artist Colors, Inc., and is provided as a basis for understanding
the potential uses of the products mentioned. Due to the numerous
variables in methods, materials and conditions of producing art,
Golden Artist Colors, Inc. cannot be sure the product will be
right for you. Therefore, we urge product users to test each application
to ensure all individual project requirements are met. While we
believe the above information is accurate, WE MAKE NO EXPRESS
OR IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR
PURPOSE, and we shall in no event be liable for any damages
(indirect, consequential, or otherwise) that may occur as a result
of a product application.