Gum Arabic

By Jacquard

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JACQUARD-Finest grade of pure Acacia Senegal and A. Arabica. 1 oz jar (28 grams). Also known as Gum Acacia, this item is the traditional binding agent used in watercolor paints. The gum is extracted from two types of Acacia tree and is non-toxic.

Use as a binder medium, emulsifier, and film former. Gum Arabic will produce a glossy, easy brushing or stamping solution. It will gradually increase tack as it dries. Use with Pearl Ex and other pigments and water to make transparent water colors.

Easily mixed and cleaned up with water. A solution of water and gum may be prepared and stored for convenience. Contains 1 ounce. Non-toxic. Conforms to ASTM D 4236.

One thing you can do is to mix Pearl Ex with gum arabic, either powdered or liquid. If mixed with the powder, you can then add a small amount of water to make the mix useable on the clay. In fact, I made two plastic paint palettes with different colors by mixing PearlEx with gum arabic and a small amount of water. I mixed it directly in the wells of the palette and let it dry. Now, to use it, I just dampen a paint brush and paint it on the surface. For the best results, apply a sealer over it if you are applying it to cured clay. For paper and other absorbent surfaces, no sealer is necessary.

You can use it on raw clay. In fact, with the gum arabic mixed in Pearl Ex, you can use a small paint brush to apply it in dots, lines, within a stencil, etc. to create a specific design or just apply it to a raised edge much easier than trying to apply it dry to a specific area. Allow it to air dry and then bake as usual. If it is applied to raised areas and can be exposed to heavy wear, then I suggest an application of your favorite sealer to help keep it from wearing off but that is also true when it is applied dry.

Just so you know, when I was making my paint palettes, I used about a teaspon of dry gum arabic, about ¼- ½ teaspoon of PearlEx and a few drops of water to make a paste right in the well of the palette. I then used a permanent marker and wrote the color name on the palette. Some of the colors can look pretty similar after drying. If you are using the liquid gum arabic, then you won’t need the water.

A few years ago a company was marketing something similar, but they didn’t have all the colors, especially the new ones we have now. I know I want to make a mix for the Mink which has become one of my favorites. I’m sure the new colors would also look pretty cool done this way.

Patty Barnes

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