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How to Relax and Unwind with Abstract Paint Pouring

How to Relax and Unwind with Abstract Paint Pouring

The freedom of expression associated with abstract art can be freeing in many ways. From stepping out of your comfort zone to letting your paint take whatever form the canvas lets it, abstract painting ends in a beautiful piece of artwork and a great sense of accomplishment.

If you’ve ever wondered what it would feel like to unleash your inner Jackson Pollock, then an abstract paint pouring class might be just the thing you need.

What is Paint Pouring?

Paint pouring, or acrylic pouring, is an art technique that involves mixing paint with a pouring medium and then pouring the fluid mixture onto a surface (typically a canvas or wooden panel). The artist generally pours multiple colours onto one surface and then allows the colours to flow and swirl into each other by either tilting the canvas or by using an instrument like a brush, palette knife, finger or other – whatever inspiration sparks in that moment.

The end result becomes a beautiful pour painting with a fusion of colours, textures, swirls and lines.


What is a Pouring Medium?

A key ingredient in pour painting is the pouring medium. A pouring medium is a solution that is added to your paints in order to lighten their consistencies, making them easier to pour and to stay separated from one another once they’re on the canvas. The pouring medium is what allows the colours to contact each other without turning into one unpleasant colour.



What Are Some Paint Pouring Techniques?

Just like the final product in abstract painting will differ from artist to artist, the techniques used to get there will also be different. In abstract paint pouring, techniques can include:

  • Mixing poured paint by shifting and tilting the canvas in all directions
  • Using a brush or other instrument to create swirls and patterns in the poured paint
  • Using a blow dryer or straw to push the paints into each other
  • Pouring your paint in sequential lines either horizontally or vertically, then drawing a brush or other instrument through the colours in the opposite direction (see video below)
  • Pouring a thicker quantity of paint in one area of the canvas, allowing it to gently pour down on its own without interference
  • Mixing or layering your colours first in a cup before pouring onto your canvas – often referred to as a “dirty pour”
  • Pouring a small pool of paint in the centre of your canvas, adding smaller pools of different colours within it, then using a thin brush or stick to drag the paint outwards from the middle
  • Adding silicone oil to the mix to create irregular borders, puddles and shapes – typically known as creating cells


paint pouring workshop

How Can Paint Pouring Help to Relax and Unwind?

As we grow from children to adults, many of us lose our sense of boundless creativity. Stuck in the hustle-and-bustle of careers, families and other commitments, we tend to hold onto stress. Tapping back into our artistic sides – however limited we may think they are – helps us to let go of that stress and experience that creative joy once again.

There’s no right or wrong way to create an abstract pour painting, so the freedom of letting go and creating artwork without boundaries or limitations is often a relaxing experience.

To experience abstract paint pouring yourself, check out the next Paint Pouring Freestyle Drop-In at Fresh Paint Studio.