Using Fluorescent or Glow paints in fine art.


There is a new trend in fine art and it’s the appearance of fluorescent colours for highlights and other effects. The reason why it is only fairly new is that fluorescent colours in the past were notorious for fading, and doing so quickly. Some of the new paints appearing on the market have addressed that problem and some brands are now producing professional quality, long-lasting fluro paints.

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True fluorescents are limited in colour range but can be used with other paints for different effects. And, not only do Fluorescent colours add bright highlights to artwork but they can add glow effects under UV light.

A great fluorescent paint that has been around for quite a while is the Glow colour range in PermAkrylic (was PermaPlastik). Although it was originally made for signwriting and set design artists are now using it in fine art. The paint is of professional quality and made to last. It dries to a flat matte appearance.

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Golden are considered one of the best acrylics in regards to quality and longevity, and they have a number of fluorescent products. But, they do warn that Fluorescents are not lightfast, so all care must be taken to protect the paint by sealing with a UV varnish. For highlighting small areas the High Flow Acrylics in 30ml bottles are perfect. The pigment loading is rich enough to make even a small amount stand out vibrantly. The Fluorescent colours are shown below.

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Another high quality acrylic paint with fluorescent colours is the Holbein Luminous Heavy Body Acrylics. Once again the artist should be aware that the fluorescent quality of the paint may dull over time and should be protected to preserve the luminous quality of the colours. The Luminous Heavy Body Acrylics have the same rich consistency as other heavy body acrylics but with the brilliance of fluorescent colours. They come in 60ml tubes.

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Fluorescent acrylic paints have come a long way in permanency but the artist must still be aware that the vibrant fluro glow may fade and it is recommended to seal artwork with a UV varnish to postpone the colours from dulling over time.

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