How To Finish an Acrylic Pour Painting with Resin (Beginner’s Guide)

Many artists like to use a gloss varnish on their paintings to seal and protect them, and give a nice shiny finish. I use MinWax Polycrylic on mine. But if you really want to take your finish up a level, then adding resin on top of your pour gives the most glossy, the most luxurious and the most professional looking finish.

However it comes at a price. Resin is more expensive than varnish or other finishes. But when you feel you are worth it, and so is your art, or you have a very special piece, or a special commission, then you should give it a try. Danny shows you how to apply resin in two thin coats on top of a canvas with an acrylic pour in this video.

In this video we go over a simple resin technique. If you’re interested in improving your overall resin skills and learning some new techniques I recommend Ann Upton’s Resin Course. She’s a resin expert and has put together this course to teach beginners the basics, and the more advanced some of her specific techniques she uses to create incredible beach scenes. She also has an option to bundle the resin supplies she uses in a resin kit that makes it easy to follow along and know you’re using exactly what she is.

18 thoughts on “How To Finish an Acrylic Pour Painting with Resin (Beginner’s Guide)”

    1. I honestly don’t know Michelle. Crazing in the varnish maybe, but not in the paint. The resin would only add a clear top coat so if the paint looks cracked, it would still look cracked but with a clear coat over it – I would have thought.

  1. Hi Deby, You mention at the top of this article that you use Minwax polycrylic. I have purchased some and am eager to try it. Do you mix it in directly with your paint, coat the top after or both? What would be the ratio of minwax to paint? Your help would be tremendous. Thank you Michelle

    1. Would like to know about mini wax also. This is the best video yet. So calming no crazy loud music. Very good

  2. Hi Deby,

    I’m currently working on a canvas portrait using only graphite pencils and charcoal for shadow effects. But I’d like to create more shine and depth to the portrait, so I was thinking if resin might be a good idea? I definitely don’t want to smudge any of the portrait, especially the layers of hair.

    Could you give me some advice?
    Thank you.

    1. any kind of liquid will ruin the artwork if it’s in graphite and charcoal for sure! they make sprays that you can use to set the medium, but i would highly suggest that you get a frame with glass instead so you don’t mess up all your hard work!

    1. Add a very thin layer of resin to the back of the canvas before you start. You have to let it dry for a couple of days. Then just flip it back over and you are good to go

  3. Lesley McGlone

    I did an resin pour over an acrylic paint pour which I had added silicon to the white paint. The resin would not stick on the white paint and left empty spots where the white paint was. Any ideas why and how to fix? Thanks in advance from a beginner.

    1. Hi Lesley!
      When varnishing using resin over an acrylic painting where silicone has been used, it is essential that the surface of the painting is completely silicone free. There are several ways to clean the surface once the painting is dried and cured. (Acrylic paint dries pretty quickly, but although it may feel dry to the touch, the paint will still be adjusting its inter-molecular structure for several days. Acrylic paint cures in about three days. That’s when I clean the surface of my paintings, and then wait at least 24 hours for the painting’s surface to dry, before I resin.) Generally, I use Dawn dishwashing soap/warm water and a lint free rag to gently wash the entire painting. I repeat this process several more times, using a clean rag with each wash. I carefully pat my paintings dry with another lint free rag between each washing, so I can check the condition of the paint. (Cured acrylic paint is not water-soluble, but I just feel better if I do this additional step!) After, I also follow the washings with a final cleaning using Windex. Check other artists’ procedures on YouTube, and try them all! You’ll find the one or combination of several that works best for you! I hope you find this information useful. ~Terri

    2. Yes! If you wipe it down first before you apply the resin with alcohol then it will get rid of the oil and stick.

  4. kimberly hatchie

    Hi there! I have trouble with the resin not staying on the top edges ( not the sides) Any tricks that will help? I know with these I have to do another coat, but in the future, I would only like to do it without having to completely redo all the time.

  5. Hello all i have a few questions. My mom wants me to make her a large painting about 20″ x 47x she wants to glue it on top of her desk and use as a top for the desk but I’m in California she’s in Hawaii so I will have to ship it to her, so my question is what is the best way to do this ? A large canvas do my pouring and then put resin over it , but can that be rolled and shipped ? I don’t want it to crack in shipping, any advice would be helpful thank you,
    Alliy Machit

    1. When I want to apply a painting to a table, I will use a wood slab, or some other solid surface. Even a sheet of clear plastic will work. Something you can fasten to the surface of the table without sagging or tearing. You could even glue canvas TO the wood, so it still has an authentic painted look. I would think a stretched canvas wouldn’t be good for a desktop. It bends.

  6. I prepped a large canvas using gesso as primer and I have some cracks. If I do a resin pour over it with dark colors will it fix it? I’m thinking it might give it a textured look?

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