Okay, I've thought about posting this for a long time. I was wondering what were the differences between MDF, Masonite, and Hardboard. Well, I finally thought look it up on Wikipedia, duh...
I've used MDF a number of times before.... but never knew that it was a bit on the unhealthy side (made with urea-formaldehyde, which can outgas or be released by sawing & sanding). Yikes! I've really liked the stuff, but I guess I need to use the respirator all the time when working with it.
I've painted (airbrushed) on Masonite with acrylics, but had heard you shouldn't use acrylics on tempered hardboard because the oils would help the water based paints to not bond, so I didn't use that....
In college, we used what seemed to be some sort of Masonite with a glossy white coating on one side for painting palettes, which worked really well.
When I've used MDF, I've generally doped down the surface with Super Glue or Minwax Wood Hardener to seal and harden the surface, which seems to have worked pretty well.
Of all these materials, I've mostly used MDF, for props since I've been doing much more prop work than art, since it's cheap, and cuts and works really nicely. What have other people's experiences and prerferences been?