Month: December 2018

The Cracker Medium

In this article, we will show you how to use this fantastic product from Pentart, what effects you can achieve, and other tricks and creative ideas to bring the most out of the technique.

With the crackle medium, we can achieve old & fantastic aged effects, of crackled paint on old objects & paintings, and the look as if the paint is about to peel away from the object.

In order to be able to start playing with the colours and different effects, first we need to understand how this works. The Crackle Medium is basically applied between two different colours of acrylic paint layers. We will need a base layer & this will be the colour of the crackles. Once the base layer has dried, we can apply the crackle medium. When the Crackle medium has also dried, we can then apply our top layer of a different colour. You will notice, as the top layer is drying, it activates the crackle medium. The cracks will start to create during the final drying stage & become more and more defined on the surface, showing the bottom layer’s colour, in the cracks.

Crackled effect bowl

The patterns of the cracks will depends on two factors; first, the thickness of each layer (the thicker the layers are, the larger the cracks will become), and second, the method used, to apply the paint layers. This can be either classic straight brush strokes, to create more organised, “parallel” cracks. Alternatively, sponge brush can also be used for applying the top layer, and that will create effect of more “messy” cracks.

It is important to note, the top layer should not be Metal, Pearl, or Chameleon effect paints, as these paints do not produce any spectacular cracks. Another key point to consider is also, when applying decoupage on top of the cracked surface, the top layes should always be of lighter tones (white, cream, beige, pastel colours, etc). This, in fact, is a general rule in decoupage, that due to the thin, and almost see-through nature of the napkin layers that we apply to any surface, the images only show clearly on lighter tone backgrounds. Dark-toned backgrounds, simply do not work well with decoupage, as they absorb the colours of a fine layer of papernapkin.

When decoupaging glass product with the crackled medium, the order of the layers do change however! The decopage image needs to go on first, once that’s dry, the Crackle medium can be applied. When the crackle medium is also dry, the top layer needs to be applied next, which will start the crackling effect as soon as these start drying. The final layer should be the bottom layer in this case, for the colour of the cracks. Take a look some beauiful and creative solutions in the videos below: