Acrylic paintings are a popular medium among artists due to their versatility, fast drying time, and ability to create vibrant colors. However, once the painting is complete, it’s crucial to properly care for and maintain it to ensure its longevity and prevent any damage over time.
Exposure to dust, dirt, sunlight, and other environmental factors can cause discoloration, fading, cracking, and other forms of deterioration. Also, maintaining your paintings can help retain their value, making them a worthwhile investment for collectors and artists.
Preparing Your Painting for Display
Preparing your acrylic painting for display is essential in caring for your artwork. Before you showcase your artwork, ensure it is scorched and cured. You must wait at least two weeks after it is complete before displaying it to avoid damage or smudging.
Choose a frame that complements your artwork and fits its dimensions properly. You may also use acid-free matting and UV-protective glass to help prevent discoloration and fading over time.
Protecting Your Painting from Dust and Dirt
Dust and dirt can accumulate on the surface of your painting over time, causing discoloration, dullness, and other damage. The best way to prevent this is by keeping it clean and dust-free. Use a microfiber cloth or a soft-bristled brush to gently remove any dust or dirt that may have accumulated on the surface of your painting.
Avoid storing it in a basement or attic, as these areas are more susceptible to moisture and dust. If you must transport your painting, ensure it is appropriately wrapped and secured to prevent any damage during transit.
Do’s and Don’ts of Cleaning Acrylic Paintings
Cleaning acrylic paintings requires special care and attention to avoid damaging the delicate paint layers. Here are the do’s and don’ts of cleaning acrylic paintings to ensure your artwork remains in excellent condition.
Do: Dust Regularly
Dust can attract moisture, leading to mold and mildew growth, especially in humid environments. You can help maintain its original beauty and prevent the need for more intensive cleaning methods, which can be risky for the delicate paint layer and the portrait’s surface.
Do: Clean From The Top Using Light Strokes
Start using a soft-bristled brush or a microfiber cloth to gently remove any loose dirt or dust from the top of the portrait. Begin cleaning from the top and work your way down in sections, using light strokes and gentle pressure to avoid damaging the paint layer.
Do: Use a Mild Cleaner Specialized for Acrylic Paintings
Specialized cleaners have a specific formula to clean acrylic paint without causing damage to the paint layer or the surface of the painting. Regular household cleaners can be too harsh for the delicate paint layer of an acrylic painting and can cause fading and cracking of the paint over time.
Don’t: Clean Painted Areas
You should not clean the painted areas of an acrylic painting because the cleaning solution or process may cause damage to the paint layer.
Suppose there are areas of the painting that are particularly dirty or stained. It is best to seek the advice of a professional conservator or restorer with experience cleaning and restoring acrylic paintings.
Don’t: Allow The Cleaner to Dry on The Portrait Surface
Acrylic paint is a porous medium, and allowing the cleaner to dry on the surface of the painting can cause it to seep into the paint layer, potentially causing discoloration, staining, or even paint peeling.
After cleaning the portrait, it is important to immediately wipe away the cleaning solution and any residue with a clean, damp cloth. Always follow the instructions on the cleaner carefully, and avoid leaving it on the surface of the painting for longer than recommended.
Proper Storage of Acrylic Paintings
Store the painting in a cool, dry, and well-ventilated area. Avoid storing the artwork in areas subject to extreme temperature changes, humidity, or direct sunlight, as these can cause the paint to crack or fade over time.
Store the painting vertically rather than horizontally to prevent any warping or bending of the canvas or panel. If the artwork has a frame, ensure it is secure and not too tight, as this can cause damage to the painting or frame itself over time.
Handling Acrylic Paintings
Handle the painting with clean hands or gloves to avoid transferring oils or dirt onto the surface. Avoid touching the surface directly with your fingers, as the oils and acids in your skin can damage the paint layer over time.
When moving the painting, hold it by the sides or stretcher bars, never by the top edge or in the corners. When transporting the artwork, wrap it in acid-free paper or bubble wrap and place it in a sturdy, padded container. Avoid packing it too tightly or placing heavy objects on top of it.
Preserve Your Acrylic Paintings for Generations to Come
Acrylic paintings, like the ones from Memorialize Art, can be fragile and susceptible to damage from environmental factors, such as sunlight, humidity, and temperature changes. Maintaining and preserving them ensures they remain in good condition, which future generations can appreciate.