Creating with resin can be simple as well as rewarding! Resin art for beginners does come with a learning curve however. We are sharing with you the 5 things we wish we’d have known before starting on our resin art journey.
We love working with resin and, most of the time, our projects turn out beautifully. But that hasn’t always been the case. We were new at this once too. Many of us learned much of what we know through trial and error. We want to help you avoid the same mistakes we made so you can skip some of the frustration and get right to the joys of creating with resin!
Resin Art for Beginners: 5 Things you Should Know
1. Measure, measure, measure!
Did we mention measure? One of the most common mistakes that newbies make is not measuring properly. Of course you will thoroughly read the instructions on your Artist Resin bottles before you get started but please don’t underestimate the importance of exact measurements. It’s similar to the difference between cooking and baking. While cooking, eyeballing is totally acceptable and often encouraged. While baking, precise measuring can mean the difference between a delicious cake and pan full of disaster. Working with resin is just like baking!
The ratio needs to be exactly 1:1 resin to hardener every time. When beginning a project, estimate how much how much product you will need. After you’ve been creating with resin for awhile this will be easy to. When you are just starting out, however, err to the side of having too much mixed product and not too little. You don’t want to find out after you’ve started pouring that you don’t have enough mix to complete your project. And you want to avoid mixing more product in at the end which can negatively affect your pour.
Pay attention to recommended minimums:
It is also important to not mix less than the recommended minimum of 2 oz. Mixing less can cause your resin to stay uncured, sticky, or soft. The reason for this is that there needs to be enough of each product to initiate the chemical reaction necessary to start the curing process. If you need help deciding how much resin you need for your project we have a Resin Calculator to help with that!
2. Mix Thoroughly
Thoroughly mixing your resin is important because it removes streaks and prevents sticky spots from forming after curing. It is also important to mix slowly so you don’t introduce too many air bubbles into the resin. What we’ve found is that it’s best to mix the hardener and the resin in two separate containers before combining them. Scrape the sides of your container while stirring to make sure you are incorporating all of the product. Stir the resin and the hardener individually for three minutes. Then combine them in a third container and mix slowly and thoroughly for another two minutes. If you are looking for more information on how to properly mix Counter Culture DIY Artist Resin, we have a whole blog post to help with that!
3. Use Dry Equipment
Resin is incredibly sensitive to moisture. Any water that is introduced to your mix will cause your resin to be cloudy. This is easy to overcome though, just make sure that all or your tools and equipment are completely dry before you start. After you wash your equipment, dry it with a clean cloth and then allow it to also air dry. This extra step will ensure that there are no residual water droplets hiding in any nooks or crannies.
4. Temperature is Important
Resin is a little picky when it comes to temperature. Who doesn’t prefer that temperature window of 71-75 degrees? Well resin agrees! In fact, if it isn’t within those temps when it’s being worked with it will end up being cloudy. This is also easy to overcome. We suggest using a warm water bath to get your resin and hardener to the desired temperature before mixing them. Simply put them in separate containers and then set those containers in warm water for a few minutes before you begin to stir. You will also want to make sure that the room temperature of your work area falls within that resin comfy range.
5. Don’t Rush it!
Artist Resin needs to sit undisturbed for 24 hours in order to cure properly. If your project calls for a second coat of resin, that can be applied after 8 hours. Other than that, however, resist temptation and keep those excited hands off. By the 12th hour your resin will be dry to the touch but don’t let that fool you, it needs 24 hours to cure to 95% and a full 72 hours to cure entirely. It’s easy to feel like a kid anticipating Christmas morning while waiting for your first projects to cure but we promise that it will be worth the wait! For more information you can check out our post about understanding resin.
There is much to learn about crafting and creating with resin but we chose to share with you the 5 categories that led to the most problems for us. Had we known what we know now we’d have wasted less time and product. We are hoping that, armed with this information, you’ll be able to avoid much of that waste!
If you want more inspiration and information we have a Facebook group for that. Join us in Counter Culture DIY Artist Support where we, and other artists, offer ideas, answer questions, and support each other!
Do you have an art project using any of our products that you want to share? Send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we can feature them here!
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