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Are you looking for a virtual workshop on Atelier InteractiveThen click here to watch this video playlist!

This is a special digital magazine section of the Atelier website, which is primarily directed to viewers in Australia where Atelier Interactive is well known and readily available, although the information presented is useful for all artists. Each month in Australian Artist, Jim Cobb, Chroma's Owner and Paint Formulator, will be presenting a product or group of products, and be expanding on that information here on the "digital page." (To access past newsletters, please click here.)


Before we get started I want to ask you to download this PDF file for reference because I am changing the format of my newsletters – it is just too hard to get group activities organised in meaningful numbers, so any group that would like to organise their own end of the process is very welcome to contact me, meantime – the new format, beginning here, is to show you on video how various paint products behave, and at the same time organise ongoing introductory prices for new products so that you can try the ones you think you might like at home

Retailers won’t want to stock new things unless you create the demand, so the best way to start this process off is to have products offered on internet sites so that you can access them easily – then, if you do like them please talk to your retailer because the introductory prices will continue till the end of this year

All About Atelier Interactive

As featured in Australian Artist Magazine

This month my subject is Atelier Interactive, which is Chroma’s most important product, plus a coordinated range of new mediums. In order to understand what makes Atelier Interactive so special, it's best to watch the below videos in order. They will serve as a virtual workshop.

Part 1 - An Introduction To Drying & New Mediums


Acrylics Can Now Do This


How Different Paints & Mediums Work

Oil paint effects are now easy to do The third video shows a sequence of the new mediums going from thick to thin and watching them being used should help you to decide which ones you like. 


How Atelier Interactive & New Mediums Work

Note: I know that most people prefer to watch a 2 to 3 minute video, I must point out that the video demonstrations needed to properly illustrate what I am trying to point out so that it is understood I have to take quite a lot more time, and if you want to understand what is going on you’ll have to put up with me – I know I am a “grumpy old man” a bit like the people that used to be in that old British television show but at least there is a purpose in what I am doing!

Download the Australian Artist Magazine article here

Atelier Interactive was released back in 2005 and by now it has changed a lot and needs to be reviewed within the popular heavy bodied acrylic classification.

How do you, as a consumer, investigate a new paint?

  • Go to the internet and check out the colours and their lightfastness. (There are some brands which are not really artist colours and can’t give this information).
  • Comparing colour strength. You will find that all good brands have similar colour strengths.
  • You need to know that good brands are inter-compatible, and you can mix them up.
  • So what are you looking for to make your comparison?
  • Most people feel caught up in the brand of paint they are using, and imagine that trying a different paint is a big deal involving a complete changeover – this is not so – the main thing you are looking for is the paint consistency, how the paint comes off the brush, and that only needs about three tubes to try out.

Every acrylic artist uses traditional fast drying techniques and Atelier Interactive performs all these processes quite normally.

The main reason why you would choose Atelier Interactive is that it has a unique property which can become very important to you:  it is easy to keep it wet for more blending – but it dries normally when you stop painting. Download the How To Use Info Sheet’s to learn more.

I know there are many artists who just use water when they are painting because they find mediums confusing, and I think this is because they are difficult to describe in words, and I hope the short videos I am doing here will show you clearly what the new products do.  They are arranged by viscosity from thick to thin and you may find a use for more than one in your work, and you have your introductory pricing till the end of 2018 to work it out for yourself!*

There is a range of new Atelier Mediums set out from thick to thin

The new mediums being released in Australia and New Zealand at special introductory prices have been formulated in a coordinated sequence ranging from thick to thin, and should be considered as a group from which artists can choose mediums for their own purposes. I think many artists will choose more than one medium when they have the opportunity to see on video how they work, and there will be more videos to follow. Please note: I am trying to verbally describe each of these new mediums and how they can be viewed as a hierarchy rather than singly – please allow me some time to make the videos which will illustrate them in action because I need to do these carefully before they are put on the internet!


Let's consider characteristics which are common to all of these mediums

  • Water can be added to all the mediums and one good use of this is to use a water wet brush along the edges of a freshly painted area if it needs to be softened.
  • They can all be used in any chosen ratio to the paint they are added to.
  • Glazes and scumbles happen when a lot of medium is used for see-through effects.
  • All the mediums can be dried off faster by sunlight or a hair dryer.
  • Gloss - all of these mediums have been regulated to give a surface sheen which matches our Heavy Bodied Paints – note especially that the new Heavy Gel does not create glossy patches.

    • Artists using Jo Sonja or Free Flow should use Holding Medium for thicker and Thin Medium for thinner processes – the other mediums would affect the matte finish of these paints but of course Jo Sonja paints are often varnished  and the above notice might not need to be heeded if this is the case, but the special vivid matte finish of Free Flow is spoiled if it is varnished or if a non-matte medium is used


The new mediums described individually


  • The surface finish now matches Atelier Interactive or A2 paints and does not create glossy patches.
  • The consistency has been tightened to leave sharp texture when mixed with the paints at about 1 to 1, yet the mixture moves well. I doubt that many artists will use it throughout a whole painting – it is more likely to be used to accentuate a painting done mostly with Thick Painting Medium.


  • I think this medium will quickly become a favourite of artists who would like to create a more tactile painterly effect similar to oil painting, probably with the Heavy Gel used on top in places for emphasis.
  • Used about 1 to 1 with paint a very juicy and luscious mixture results which also provides a longer wet time because there is more fluid in the mix – at the same time it reacts with Unlocking Formula if it needs to be kept wet. Sunlight or a hair dryer can be used for quick drying off, but it is also interesting to experiment with painting wet on wet which is now possible as with oil paints. Pick the right moment and a wet colour will slide over a wet or damp underpainting without picking up colour, but it can also be blended back into the under colour by using brush pressure.  It is also possible to use Unlocking Formula if you want to blend back into the underpainting.
  • This medium is addictive I am still making discoveries – it is terrific when something difficult becomes easy, and blending has never been easy to do with acrylics until now with the Thick Painting Medium anybody can do blending and smooth gradations wet in wet, with the greatest of ease, which makes this Thick Painting Medium definitely the most important and most basic medium to have at hand. This applies to everybody from the most experienced down to beginners!
  • The consistency as paint comes off the brush is so juicy that anyone using it will enjoy the actual process of painting and want to keep going -  I think it will replace our present Clear Painting Medium as our most popular medium.


  • This is our most popular medium, but in this mid viscosity position we are offering a new formula middle painting medium which is an update that people may prefer when they use it. It is used for mid viscosity smooth spreading of paint, or for glazing, scumbling or edge blending
  • We want to compare this new formula with existing painting medium -  first 50 users of Clear Painting Medium who contact marketing@chromaonline.com  or at 02 9457 9922 will receive a 250ml free bottle of the new medium to compare and comment. What we ask of you in return is that you use the medium as quickly as possible and contact us at Chroma Marketing with your opinion either by email or phone.*


  • This is our most fluid medium and seems almost watery but small additions to paint make a very smooth silky mixture, while larger amounts are ideal for glazing, scumbling and edge blending. I am finding this medium very interesting because when it liquefies a paint mixture it holds the mixture together and is excellent for very fine detail.


In the first place everybody will be able to receive a new Heavy Gel Medium or a Thick Painting Medium in a free tube if they buy any two tubes of Atelier Interactive.* Having tried these products if you become addicted as I am predicting you will be able to buy larger packaging until the end of this year at special introductory prices.* The Heavy Gel will be available in 250ml pots and the Thick Painting Medium in 250ml bottles and 500ml bottles because I believe it will be extremely popular.  

The new Middle Painting Medium which has a mid viscosity similar to the present Clear Painting Medium needs to offered separately because I need to know whether it will eventually displace the present medium in popularity, and I therefore invite the first 50 artists who are at present using the Clear Painting Medium to contact Chroma Marketing on 02 9457 9922 and we will send you a free 250ml bottle of the new medium to compare them.*  What we ask of you in return is that you use the medium as quickly as possible and contact us at Chroma Marketing with your opinion by contacting marketing@chromaonline.com

If you are interested in receiving a Free Atelier Interactive + Unlocking Formula Kit and arranging a Workshop for your art group or art store (as seen in Australian Artist), please contact marketing@chromaonline.com for details.*

Trial tubes of Heavy Gel and Thick Painting Medium are being packed at present.  You need to buy 2 tubes of Atelier Interactive for every free tube and this should help you decide what you want to use, and you can then order large packages at intro prices till the end of 2018.

As this sampling process proceeds you will be able to order Holding Medium and Thin Medium which can be used for all of the paints that Chroma makes including Jo Sonja and Free Flow as explained above and all of these materials will be available in larger containers at intro prices until December 31, 2018.  We have a lot of new materials to produce, and we will announce the availability of these mediums as soon as we are able to programme their production.

*Promotions, free samples and introductory pricing available in Australia only while supplies last.

For technical questions or feedback about Atelier Interactive, our videos and this digital newsletter, please contact Jim at jcobbchromatech@gmail.com.


 Please help us become a community, and let me and everyone else know your experiences and send us some images to put on our Facebook section. Please comment if you are trying these products. Like our page here!

Detail of "Finders Landscape" by Elisabeth Cummings and Detail of "Seated Figure, Feet in Harbour" by Euan Macleod