Thursday, October 14

Why Doesn't Acrylic Get the Respect (I Think) It Deserves?

One of My First Paintings in Acrylic

The title of today’s blog is a question I am trying to find the answer to.

Why hasn't acrylic earned a legitimate (and I might add, respected) place among the painting media? Someone just tell me, please.

My goal is to paint and render in acrylic paintings that are every bit as fine, as excellent, as awarded and, yes, as respected as oil paintings.

Maybe it’s just me, but there seems to be an undercurrent of disrespect in the greater art world for acrylic paint as a true artistic medium.

I’ve blogged on this topic before, and still I have not been able to put my finger on it.

Acrylic seems to be grudgingly included in art competitions. I guess that’s something (to be included, I mean).

Have you noticed—there’s no Acrylic Artist magazine (print or online) devoted exclusively to acrylic painting and that publishes on a regular basis that I have been able to find? If you know of one, please leave a comment.

I can’t find an Acrylic Art Society or similar exclusively for acrylic painters. Oh, I did find the National Oil and Acrylic Painters Society, but as you can see from its name, acrylic is lumped in with oil and even gets second billing in the title.

As I’ve said before, acrylic has only been around since 1955. In the eyes of oil painters, has it not yet stood the test of time? To this I ask, “How long is long enough?”

Maybe it’s because manufacturers are still inventing and refining formulas, and oil painters think of the relatively new open-acrylics as experimental. What?!


If you agree, or especially if you disagree, with my observations, let’s discuss it.

Until next blog…


  1. The applications of Acrylic are so varied that it can be used to make sculptures, thinned out to work more like water media, and used with glazing medium to make paintings along the lines of oils. I think that is why it is divided up among the oil societies and the watercolor societies.

    I even use it sometimes like egg tempera.

  2. Thanks for your comments. I guess acrylic's versatility is what makes it, well, so versatile. It does make me wonder if that means all the media for painting have already been discovered or invented.