Bayside Studio and Showroom

Australian Art and Luxury Fine Finishes for Ornate Plaster

Artistic Painting with ArchiSpray

 Submitted Monday, February 27, 2006
 Submitted by: Joan Kamaru Contact Joan Kamaru
 Bayside Studio and Showroom 

 Artistic Painting with ArchiSpray By Joan Kamaru. Painting method using Architectural Tints and Enamel is   unveiled

 The ArchiSpray method of painting is the outcome of experimenting with decorating Ornate Plaster in the Studio.  Most techniques for decorating plaster rely on the plaster being installed on a wall or ceiling and are limited in scope for development of decoration. The ArchiSpray method allows the painter/decorator a complexity of techniques that develop into beautiful and unique Fine Finishes.

Architectural Tints are manufactured for adding colour to acrylic and oil based paint products for the Building Trade. Automotive Tints have a finer structure as automotive paint is applied with a spray gun. Every manufacturer creates Tints to their own design and you will find that a slight variation exists between producers. Depending on your requirements, you can purchase Tints in anything from a small bottle to 2 and 4 litre tins. Some of the tints are expensive to buy such as blue and red. Earth tones, black and white are cheaper and are easier to replace. I use Dulux and Wattle Tints. These are the products I used decorating Ornate Plaster.

Starting with the idea that your painting will be the outcome of the application of several layers of both Architectural Tints and clear Spray Enamel, create the first layer using a lightly tinted wash. The more water used the lighter the effect. I use all kinds of brushes, but soft full and wide brushes are great for this step. Choose carefully whether you tilt or lay flat your board to paint. I generally combine techniques according to the desired effects. Because your tint wash contains no binding material it will mix and spread across the surface of the board easily. This is essentially the background you are creating. Use your water coloring techniques in this step. If this is your first try at painting please go to for great online painting tutorials.This layer is now allowed to rest and dry out.

Tints vary in drying times according to their viscosity or thickness of application and water content. If there is high humidity on the day you wish to spray you could find that the tint has not dried out properly or has attracted moisture from the air. It is best to wait until the Tint has dried or if you don’t have time, dry out the surface with a hair blow dryer. Too much heat or too quickly drying can create cracks. Cracks are sometimes a cool effect, but when you need them to disappear - lightly dampen a brush with water and redraw in the case of a line.

The next step is of course sealing this layer of Tint with enamel. If you use a (soft wide) brush and clear enamel you might find that the tint can move across the surface and catch in the brush's bristles. I prefer sealing with clear spray enamel. You get what you pay for most times and Craft spray cans are fine, but I prefer automotive cans of clear enamel spray. These cans are designed to spray more efficiently and are less prone to stalls and over spray or spurting. Also their contents are quality materials, which means a better overall finished product for you.

  • With any product it pays to read the usage directions. Generally, you must shake the can. Also, the can should be neither too cold nor too hot. Spraying directions on the can should be followed. I take my artwork outside for spraying for a few reasons. One is that a fine layer of 'spray dust' will cover everything in the room, unless of course if you are lucky enough to have a spray booth!
  • If you spray the board horizontally take great care to not over spray as the paint will build up and run down causing streaks. You can make a few light coats adding up to a fine finish.
  • Select a clean area away from pets and children. Two really good reasons: ONE - they can get very ill from the fumes, TWO - they have a tendency to touch things and usually wreck you work! ( Partners have the same innate abilities!) The can's instructions will direct you to spray evenly across the board well I have to tell you that I rarely do this until the very final coat! This coat of enamel when dry will seal your tinted wash. Most sprayed paint dries in a few minutes and you can then continue painting.

Test the enameled surface before continuing painting. The enamel's surface can still be tacky to the touch and therefore not suitable for applying a further layer of Tints.

This layer of Tint can be mixed with a lesser amount of water taking the texture to a tackier level. Oil painting techniques can be employed with this mixture. Using ever finer brushes each layer can elicit more detail.

Thicker additions of Tint require a heavier layer of Enamel. Your success can be evaluated by bringing your face close to the painting and glancing across the surface checking for dull spots and grit.

  • If the surface appears somewhat dull then more enamel is required to soak into the tint.
  • If you apply Tint to only a small area and you are low on Enamel, only spray the Tinted areas. This treatment won’t hurt the painting in the long run.
  • There are other products you can use such as floor finishes and PVA glue.

    Interesting effects can be accomplished using the following tips.
  • Stippling the wash process with complementary colours brings out wonderful combinations of colour.
    Smudge straight Tint onto the enameled surface leaving only a hint of the tint.
  • Try all kinds of brushes, sponge, rag and scrapers for unusual textures.
  • I like a mirror finish but there are different types of sprays including a matt spray. Use this spray last as it is a finish. Some of my painting total 20 or more layers of Tint and Enamel to create my desired effect. My final finish can take as many as four or five coats.
  • Automotive clear spray paint often has a slight stain to it so the resulting finish can be less than white and leaning towards a light cream tint.

    Extra mediums can be applied, including Texta’s (felt pen markers), crayons, inks, tinted sprays, glitter and pearl or gilding. Experiment by combining all kinds of markers etc. If you don’t like the flatness of this technique of painting you can always add filler. Rice flour, paper paste, pva glue and Paper Mache are all effective for adding texture. You can even achieve a Finger Paint type effect! Just make sure each layer is fully dry before proceeding to the next step.

You can try ArchiSpray on paper but a prepared board or canvas is far more satisfying to work on. Any board will do. Even a good cardboard is a good surface to try out.

  • Use a good sealing coat. There are some products out there that are a sealer and first coat in one.
  • Keep this process clean as possible. Hairs and grit can be unsightly in the finished product. Again I urge you to read and follow Product directions. Let the first coat dry and then lightly sand prior to the second coat.
  • Here is another area that you can experiment in. The final coat causes the level of staining on the working surface. If you use a Gloss paint finish, the coat of paint will resist any Tint you apply. A Satin finish will be slightly more open to the Tint and Matt will soak the Tint up and stain heavily. So you can adjust the final finish to the appearance that you hope to attain.

I have worked on all types of surfaces including stretched canvas. Canvas is fun to paint on. Most canvases these days come already prepared. This is okay but I like to add a few more coats to rid the canvas of texture. There is no reason to stick with a white surface if you require a great tint for the background. There are so many variables available to the creative mind with ArchiSpray, just let the process flow and your efforts will surely be rewarded.

Instead of starting out with a Tint Wash you can apply a coat of Spray Enamel first. When this has dried apply your first Tint in any form you choose. My best tip is to leave the Project overnight to dry out between layers! Good luck with all your experiments using ArchiSpray. Please do not hesitate to send in your efforts to share with us. Everyone has there own style of creating visual art and much more can be accomplished with using the ArchiSpray method.

Go to our site to check out some of our artwork and decorative Faux Finishes using ArchiSpray. From there you can find other sites that include our artwork.

Or you can email us for any information you might require. E:
mailto:[email protected]



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Artist Profile - Joan Kamaru


 ArchiSpray Paintings by Joan Kamaru

 Last one for 2005



  Slide Show

 Joan's Mum - Joy


Tulla - Lilie Court, We used to sell security products and services when all the factoies were going up. This photo is terrible, but around the border are the names of people and brand names of heavy vehicles and industry events which were all part of 'the life' at this time.

 Bloody sideways! The flag pole is still there but they took the flag down, barstards. Now overseas student accommodation, this held nursing staff and was a teaching

Hospital. The Aussie flag flew high and was a local vocal point. Looking up Garnet Street ,

Preston on a hot moonless night. Preston, Melbourne.

Forget the Title of this one. Preston influenced.

The Muslim guy was ordering a family size pizza in Russian, I swear. Other than that, this just shows the variety of life styles in Preston, Melbourne.

Terrible photo, The Alfred Hospital, Melbourne - 2005. Shocking year for health, Simon had four heart attacks and three ops at this hospital. Marvelous Staff from top to bottom.


Theatre Stage Prop, Gilded Door - massive project with over 600 faux gold leaves.


 Beautiful Ornate Plaster Rosette

 Yeah it's not a painting,but it is so beautiful to me.



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