paint won't stick

Bongo

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So -- I recently switched to oils and am really liking it -- but I still have many(many) hundreds of dollars of acrylic paint left that I want to use up.
Also I've always just painted one painting at a time - not start a new painting until I've finished the one I'm working on - until now. I have four paintings going in various stages of completion.

So, I'm switching back and forth between oil and acrylic. But I keep seperate palettes and brushes. Also I normally paint directly onto gesso, but for this (acrylic) painting I first toned with burnt sienna.

Doing an acrylic painting on a 12"x 24" gessoed and toned hardboard panel - I started to do the block in - and the paint didn't want to stick. I tried with and without medium, water, straight from the tube... but really had to scrub and go over and over with the paint.

so what's going on? I thought maybe I toned with oil by mistake. Seems improbable - but with 4 paintings and two mediums going on at the same time it's not impossible. . but I tried rubbing a spot on the toned panel with alcohol - and the paint came right off - a sign that it's most likely acrylic. so??
 
What medium did you use?
Perhaps you used an oil medium in your acrylic paint and that altered the chemicals.
 
It really does sound like oil contamination by some means. either in your toning or medium. Since you are switching back and forth, just give the surface a good wipe down and use it for an oil painting and take it as a lesson learned to be doubly careful in the next one. :giggle:
 
I have two identical (except for handle color) 2" brushes - I use one for acrylic and one for oils. So I got the 2" brush from the acrylics and used it for the gesso and the toning - which now that I think of it, did not go on well either.

But if I had used it with oil before -- could a clean, dry brush have enough residual oil on it to cause this problem?
 
I have two identical (except for handle color) 2" brushes - I use one for acrylic and one for oils. So I got the 2" brush from the acrylics and used it for the gesso and the toning - which now that I think of it, did not go on well either.

But if I had used it with oil before -- could a clean, dry brush have enough residual oil on it to cause this problem?
I wouldn't think so, not if it had been properly cleaned.
 
A small contamination could do it. A wipe-down in a brush previously used as an oil brush, then used for the gesso will do the trick. Oily fingers will do it. Any kind of oily surface will make it so acrylics won't stick. What is the substraight? Is it a panel by chance? Was the panel sealed with something beforehand?
 
I'm paintng on 1/8" panel - same stuff I've been using for years - so I don't think that the problem - A brush with residual oil on it seems about the most probable cause.
 
I cut that panel up into little pieces, then burned it, then buried the ashes, then planted a tree on top of it.

I'm pretty sure the problem was I used my oil paint gesso brush instead of my acrylic gesso brush. They look the same except for the handle color and I keep forgetting which is which. I use different brushes now.

Thanks for trying to help
 
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