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Choosing the Right Paint for Bisque Ceramics: Exploring Options and The Best Choice

Bisque ceramics offer an inviting canvas for artistic expression, but selecting the right type of paint is crucial to achieving vibrant and durable results. With an array of paint options available, it's important to understand which types of paint can be used on bisque ceramics and which one stands out as the best choice. In this blog post, we'll explore the different paint options, their characteristics, and guide you toward the optimal paint for your ceramic masterpiece.

Which paints can be used on bisque ceramics?

Open paint pots with different coloured paint

  1. Acrylic Paints: Acrylic paints are a popular choice for painting bisque ceramics due to their versatility, quick drying time, and ease of use. These water based paints adhere well to the porous surface of ceramics, creating a durable finish that resists cracking and fading. Acrylics offer a range of vibrant colours and can be easily mixed to achieve custom shades. They also work well with various techniques such as layering, blending, and dry brushing.

  2. Ceramic Glazes: Specifically formulated for ceramics, these paints are designed to bond with the ceramic surface and withstand high firing temperatures. Ceramic glazes require a glaze firing in a kiln to set the colours permanently. While they offer excellent durability, they are often limited in colour options and may require more specialised equipment.

  3. Oil based Paints: Oil based paints can be used on bisque ceramics, but they require thorough drying time and a clear sealant to protect the artwork. They tend to have a longer drying time compared to other options. Oil based paints are not as commonly used for ceramics due to their longer drying time and the availability of more suitable alternatives.

  4. Enamel Paints: Enamel paints, which come in both oil-based and water-based, can be used on ceramics. They create a glossy finish that provides a protective layer, making them a good option for functional pieces like mugs or plates. Enamel paints can be more challenging to work with compared to acrylics due to their longer drying time and potential for brushstrokes to show.

  5. Glass Paints: These paints are designed for glass surfaces but can also be used on ceramics. They offer a translucent finish that adds a stained glass effect to the artwork. Glass paints require heat-setting to make them permanent, which may not be suitable for all ceramic pieces.

Paint pots on a shop shelf

Which is the best paint for ceramic bisque?

Acrylic Paints are often considered the best paint option for bisque ceramics for several reasons:

  1. Adhesion: Acrylic paints adhere well to porous surfaces like bisque ceramics, ensuring a strong and durable bond.

  2. Quick Drying: Acrylics dry quickly, allowing for faster layering and adjustments.

  3. Vibrant Colours: Acrylic paints offer an extensive range of colors, including both opaque and transparent options, allowing for a wide variety of artistic expressions. Plus a good array of specialty paints & effects, such as snow, metallic & iridescent.

  4. Ease of Use: They are user-friendly and suitable for artists of all levels, from beginners to experts.

  5. Versatility: Acrylics work well with different techniques, such as dry brushing, layering, and mixing.

  6. Protection: When sealed with an appropriate clear sealant, acrylic painted ceramics become resistant to moisture, fading, and cracking, making them suitable for both indoor and outdoor display.

While various types of paint can be used on bisque ceramics, acrylic paints emerge as the most versatile and optimal choice. Their quick drying time, vibrant colour range, and compatibility with a variety of techniques make them the preferred option for artists seeking to transform bisque ceramics into unique and enduring works of art. Choosing acrylic paints will unlock a world of creative possibilities on your bisque creations.


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