Paint Your Numbers

Different Types of Paint for Art 101

If you know anything about art, specifically painting, then you might know there are many different types of paints that can be used to create certain looks and techniques with paintings. Each type of paint helps to produce a different style, detail, and creative effect when used on various mediums (such as canvas, paper, etc.). Painting techniques also require certain paints in order to correctly apply the painting technique to the medium being used. 

If you are an art major, an art enthusiast, or are an artist yourself, it is important to learn about the different paints that are available. It is really cool to learn about paints and how they differ when it comes to art. 

Painting has been an art form since the beginning of time, and throughout history, the types of paints have evolved, developed, and changed. These changes correlate with the various types of art and movements we have also seen through the course of history. As these evolved, so, too, did the tools and paints needed to implement certain techniques. 

If you are interested in trying different painting techniques or are curious about what types of paints are used for art purposes, you’ve come to the right place! In this article, we will discuss the different types of paints that can be used for painting on canvas (as well as other mediums). We will also explain the difference between paints used for art and paints used for painting interiors and exteriors because they are not the same. Read on to learn more! 


This is the most commonly used paint used specifically for painting art. This is because it is such a versatile paint that can be applied to many different surfaces, making it ideal for all sorts of projects. 

Acrylic paint can be used for fine line brushwork, glazing and staining, and even water techniques. It is known for being a smooth and light paint that applies easily to most surfaces (such as canvas). Acrylics also have the highest permanence, meaning the pigment will last longer than other paints. 

Many intense and high-quality paintings have used acrylic paint. This is because it has an amazing pigment quality, high color strength, and long-lasting durability. An important thing to note if you are shopping for acrylic paint is that it comes in two varieties: artist quality and student quality. If you are just painting for fun, you will be fine with inexpensive student quality paints. No need to break the bank!  


If you see paintings that have a gloss to them, they were probably created using oil paint. This type of paint is also very durable, providing a glossy finish. Rather than the texture of acrylic paint, oil paint fills in lines and texture as it dries, which means the end result will be smooth and sleek. It is also known for its ability to blend perfectly with other colors. 

It is also a slow-drying paint, which artists prefer. This means they can develop the color and add to the painting before it has completely dried. If they need to make changes, they will have time before the final work is fully dried. There is also water-mixable oil paint, which has an added emulsifier. It can be mixed with water to create a diluted and thin texture, allowing for elasticity. However, this is not the same as water-based paint, which already has water added to it.  


Watercolor is the lightest of all the types of paint. It is translucent in appearance and can appear thin and cloudy once applied to paper. One difference between watercolor and other paints is that watercolor is a colored pigment that is held together by a binder, which is most commonly gum-arabic. The purpose of this binder is to hold the pigment together until water activates it. 

As the water dries, it stains the surface of the paper. Typically, you must use a special type of paper that will hold the watercolor. The paint is very fluid, which allows it to dry quickly. In fact, it is one of the fastest-drying paints available.  


This paint is opaque in color, which means the surface color of the paper it is applied to (most likely white in color) will not show through under the paint. It is similar to watercolor in texture but is slightly chalkier and obviously not as translucent. Unlike some types of paint, gouache paint actually absorbs light instead of reflecting it. 

Gouache needs to be diluted in water, but it still has a strong pigment. It takes a very long time to dry, which means it is workable for hours after application. It actually dries darker than the color it appears as when it is applied. You do not need much of this paint, as a small amount will last you a long time. 


Encaustic paint is wax-based rather than oil or water-based. It has one of the strongest color pigments out of all paint types. It has no solvents added to it, and it is resistant to moisture. This makes it a very versatile paint choice. Rather than regular paper, it must be applied to firm surfaces that are absorbent. 

One unique feature about this paint is that you can actually apply heat to it and use metal-working tools to work with it. It is basically beeswax that has added color pigments in it, resulting in a paste once heated. The paste is then applied to wood or canvas. This is a great paint to use for adding texture to a painting. 

What About Painting a House?

There are different paints for interior and exterior painting, which are both different than paints used for artistic purposes. There are actually quite a few different kinds, but painting for the home mostly has to do with different primers, seals, and the gloss level of the paint being used. There are also specific paints for use outdoors and indoors. This is because of weather outdoors, which can have an effect on the paint. Both types of paints can be either oil-based, latex-based, or water-based

Here are some different kinds of interior paints: primer sealer undercoat, sealer binder, metal primer, matte paint, low-sheen paint, semi-gloss paint, and gloss paint. Each of these paints is used in different instances, such as if you want a shine to the paint on your walls or if you want them flat and matte. 

When it comes to exterior paints, there are acrylic paints that come in matte, low sheen, semi-gloss, and gloss. There are also acrylic gloss and acrylic semi-gloss enamels, which are very tough and durable.  


After reading about all of these types of paint, you are probably feeling inspired to pick up a brush and start painting yourself! If this is the case, you should start your painting journey by trying a personalized Paint Your Numbers canvas. If you have never painted before, or are simply looking for an enjoyable painting project, painting your own custom canvas is a great place to start.  

It is simple and fun yet still provides a challenge. Focusing on one task will help you relax and stimulate your brain. The way it works is you start by uploading any of your favorite photos to our website. Once we have received your upload, we will work on sending you a custom canvas that has an outline of your chosen image. Each portion of the canvas will be sectioned off into numbers that correspond to the numbers on the paints we provide. 

Simply match up the paint numbers to the numbers on the canvas, and you are on your way to creating a beautiful masterpiece of your own! If you have not spent much time painting, this is a great way to get into it and learn about the tools needed to complete a painting, including canvas, brushes, and paint. It might also encourage you to start painting more and tap into your artistic side!