Abstract Painting Anyone Can Do

Paintiing on canvas. So simple. Use Modern Masters Iron Oxide Paint and Rusting Activator. Coat a canvas in acid blocking primer. Paint your accent color stripes (I chose turquoise) with Acrylic Paint. Paint two coats of iron oxide paint, leaving your accent color exposed as desired, waiting 30 minutes between coats. After your 2nd coat dries for an hour, spray on the rust activator (do this outside to avoid rust drips on your floor) and let sit for 5 minutes. Spray a 2nd coat and let the activator do its stuff for about 3 hours. The only actual painting done was the turquoise.
Product used
turquoise, with just a touch of yellow over a black acid-blocking primer.
1st coat of rust activator starting to work.

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Have a question about this project?

3 questions
  • Stephanie
    on Feb 15, 2016

    So the rust activator doesn't hurt or color out the acrylic paint.

    • Leslie D
      on Mar 6, 2016

      Sorry, just saw your question. The painting is holding up well...so far, no fading or damage to the paint.

    • Stephanie
      on Mar 6, 2016

      Thanks now my problem is finding modern masters. Might have to get it online

  • Julie
    on Sep 3, 2016

    Do you think you could put a coat of epoxy over all that?

    • Leslie D
      on Sep 3, 2016

      The rust portion would most likely change color with a coating of any kind, as the base iron oxide paint seems to be absorbent to liquid, which is part of what makes the activating spray work.

    • Julie
      on Sep 3, 2016

      It's very pretty. Thank you for sharing!!

  • Erin Gilley
    on Sep 16, 2018

    Can you seal this so that it is waterproof? Thinking of painting part of a patio wall.

    • Leslie D
      on Sep 17, 2018

      Modern Masters makes a sealer that works with their products. I would be hesitant to seal with a normal marine sealer without testing first, as wetting the rust area could change the effect.

Join the conversation

4 of 20 comments
  • GarynSharon Daniels
    on Apr 15, 2015

    @Leslie D: I love it but I'm not sure my husband would vote for it. Don"t you just hate not being able to just do it?

    • GarynSharon Daniels
      on May 13, 2015

      @Leslie D Have you ever heard of Core-10 metal? It only rusts so far and then hardens and stays a lovely rust color. Salem, Oregon has a Forest Service building that looks like a work of art. I worked in a Fabrication shop and have seen first hand how difficult it is to balance craftsmanship with a budget. Your work is truly beautiful.

  • Sandy Oberg
    on Aug 23, 2015

    What primer did you use??? This is beautiful!

    • Leslie D
      on Sep 16, 2018

      Thank you! I used a specialty acid-blocking primer, also made by Modern Masters, made to work with their products.

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