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Can I paint with acrylic paint before I bisque fire piggy banks?


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My grandkids and I made some pinch pot piggy banks and they want to paint them.  Can we use acrylic paint instead of  ceramic paints since I have a lot of acrylic paints left over from other projects?  I have not bisque fired the banks yet and was hoping to just bisque fire them and not have to do an additional firing.   The banks are very dry now. 

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There are many variables to this answer.  (^6)

Many colors work and many colors don't. For instances Lamp black will burn out whereas Mars black will turn a dark Burnt Umber.

Student grade Cobalt blue burns out but professional grade Cobalt blue retains its color.

Most student grade colors will burn out but those with red oxide in their composition may work, at least for a shade of brown

Professional grade reds, browns and many of the darker ochres work nicely. Yellow is iffy.

Colors with red oxides and titanium are the key with what works and what doesn't

For the most part greens burn out but I have some old tubes (30+ years old) that work where the newer tube colors don't.

Professional grade titanium white retains its color but will flake off. A clear glaze over white might work on some occasions.

Clear glaze over acrylic is tricky, those that work without a glaze may burn out once the glaze is applied over the colors, some don't. There's no rhyme or reason here 

If I was in your situation I would fire the banks to maturity then have the children paint them

Edited by Smokey2
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1 hour ago, Smokey2 said:

There are many variables to this answer.  (^6)

Many colors work and many colors don't. For instances Lamp black will burn out whereas Mars black will turn a dark Burnt Umber.

Student grade Cobalt blue burns out but professional grade Cobalt blue retains its color.

Most student grade colors will burn out but those with red oxide in their composition may work, at least for a shade of brown

Professional grade reds, browns and many of the darker ochres work nicely. Yellow is iffy.

Colors with red oxides and titanium are the key with what works and what doesn't

For the most part greens burn out but I have some old tubes (30+ years old) that work where the newer tube colors don't.

Professional grade titanium white retains its color but will flake off. A clear glaze over white might work on some occasions.

Clear glaze over acrylic is tricky, those that work without a glaze may burn out once the glaze is applied over the colors, some don't. There's no rhyme or reason here 

If I was in your situation I would fire the banks to maturity then have the children paint them

hi @Smokey2, this is great information. Have you encountered any issues with potential damage to the kiln - or anything else - from firing pieces coated with acrylic paint? 

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On 10/16/2020 at 11:23 AM, Smokey2 said:

If I was in your situation I would fire the banks to maturity then have the children paint them

Definitely this...  unless you're looking to do a 'science experiment' showing the kids what extreme heat does to their paint.  You didn't mention ages - but I suspect most kids would be disappointed to spend time putting color on their bank, and have it look completely different when they come out of the kiln.  [Edit:  ... should have said "when IT comes out of the kiln".   Don't want anyone to think the kids are going into the fire ;-) ]

You don't have to do two firings - especially with un-glazed wares.  Just make sure they're completely dry and/or candle long enough to dry them before ramping up the heat.

Edited by Rockhopper
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