Thursday, September 11, 2008

Golden Company

Somewhere on 15th street in Manhattan, New York a young entrepreneur named Sam Golden joined his uncle, Leonard Bocour, at Bocour Artist Colors. From the mid 1930’s to the 1950’s the shop became a local hangout for many of the local artists of that day. Through conversations with some of the local artists Sam Golden discovered their needs and would spend the next 20 years refining acrylic paints.

In 1972 Sam decided it was time to retire and he moved to New Berlin, New York, but somehow he could not get away from making paint. All other things were boring, but this was his true love. So in 1980, at the age of 67, Sam Golden came out of retirement and the Golden Paint company began. Since that day, the Golden has continued to grow in quality and has received numerous local and national awards. Although Sam Golden passed away suddenly in 1997, the company has continued to produce professional grade acrylic paints and materials that Sam would be proud of.

While I am completely fascinated by the history of the Golden company, I wondered what makes the Golden acrylic paints stand out against it’s competitors? It could be that Golden has the only custom lab of its kind. The lab will make products to the exact specifications of the artist’s needs and this has been the central concern since it’s humble beginnings at Bocour Artist Colors.

Not being familiar with professional paints, I was very intrigued by the names given to these colors; Quinacridone Crimson, Phthalo Blue (Green Shade), and Quiacridone/Nickel Azo Gold. After visiting the Golden website I discovered that the Quinacridone colors are excellent mixing colors because they retain their transparency and vibrant undertones due to the fact that they are an Organic Pigment. What this means is that these acrylics have a remarkable ability to withstand the impact of light and weather. These colors also tend to not muddy or gray but instead retain their brightness of color. The Quinacridone Crimson is the most lightfast and contains a deep burgundy color as well as a bright rosy undertone. Also, when you mix Phthalo Green B/S with the Quinacridone Crimson you will produce a beautiful deep black.

The Quiacridone/Nickel Azo Gold is a standout color to the Golden product line. At first glance you would expect a deep sienna but yet this acrylic has a vibrant yellow undertone that makes this a beautifully bright golden yellow.

Phthalocyanines are the oldest known Organic pigments and the Golden Heavy Body line contains 5 colors including the Phthalo Blue (Green Shade) which I received for this review.

Besides the Golden acrylics, I also received White Gesso. According to the Golden website, “Gesso can be thought of as the bridge between the support and the paint. GOLDEN Gesso is designed to penetrate a support and provide a surface for the adherence of paint.” Gesso is a very flexible medium but it also provides an opaque coverage. While the Quinacridone’s and Phthalocyanine’s provide vibrant yet transparent colors, when you mix the Gesso with these Organic pigments to create a tint, you will lose the transparency of the color but you will retain it’s vibrant undertones.

Mixing the colors of the Quinacridone Crimson, Phthalo Blue (Green Shade), and Quiacridone/Nickel Azo Gold I found that I could create a wide color palette to work with. By adding a small amount of Gesso to the green acrylic I created a more opaque look to the leaves while adding only water to the Phthalo Blue I achieved a very transparent, or stained glass effect on the printed overlay.

Title: Piggy Tails
Products used: Cardstock (Prism)
Overlay (Best Creation Inc.)
Acrylic Paint (Golden)
Embossing Powder (PK Glitz)
Brads (Misc)

I have never been one to carry pictures in my wallet. I know – it is hard to believe that a scrapbooker would not carry pictures of her children with her everywhere she goes, but it is true. To rectify this situation I decided to create this little book using rice paper and the Golden acrylics. I wanted a variation in color for the inside pages so I mixed my three acrylics and diluted them with water, creating a very fluid acrylic that flowed onto the rice paper very nicely. While the colors were diluted with water, giving them a softer look, they continued to retain their vibrant shades. For the cover of the book, I first applied Clear Tar Gel to create the texture before staining the rice paper cover. Once my papers were dry, I folded my rice paper for the inside pages and the cover. I then cut a strip of cardstock for the book band and attached the metal closure. Now I have a cute little brag book that is stuffed with my family photos that I’m proud to carry with me.

Book-Cover Book-Inside 
Title: Mini Photobook
Products used: Rice Paper (Hobby Lobby)
Acrylic Paint (Golden)
Clear Tar Gel (Golden)
Cardstock (Basic Grey)
Closure (Basic Grey)

The Golden Acrylic paints and Gesso completely exceeded my expectations. The quality of these products are the reason that this company has continued to flourish and is continuing to meet the individual needs of today’s artists.

The Golden acrylic paint products have opened up a whole new world of creativity and color. I look forward to using and experimenting with the Golden products more in all areas of my artistic endeavors. Thank you Golden for giving us a product that we can be proud of!

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