How to paint with Oils

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Painting with Oil Colors - How to do it properly?

Oil paints are undoubtedly one of the most popular mediums in traditional and modern artwork. Both, beginning and professional artists tend to appreciate the vibrant colors and unique textures of oil paints, and an oil painting is a vibrant piece of art that is certain to catch a viewer's eye.

Oil colors are relatively easy to find, available at any craft store or artist supply store and should be purchased along with accessories such as a spatula or putty knife, canvas, an easel, and a drop cloth. A drop cloth is especially important when painting indoors, as it protects flooring and furniture.

Painting with oil color works best on canvas or on cardboard

To begin, take your solvent, such as linseed or safflower oil, and apply it to the palette to be added to your paint. Only put a small amount of paint on the palette at a time, as many people overestimate the amount needed, thus wasting a great deal of paint.

From here, once you have assured that your painting area is covered and your materials are within easy reach, you are ready to begin painting. To mix colors, simply use your paint spatula or brush.

Painting itself is subjective, and there are no specific rules regarding content or presentation, though many artists prefer to keep a semblance of symmetry to all work to help maintain aesthetic quality and retain viewer focus.

Many artists prefer to keep a basic palette of oil colors, containing the seven basic colors as well as a bright white and a jet black. From this palette, any color can be easily created. Some artists even prefer to paint solely in black and white, providing a stark contrast and a highly impactful piece.

In regards to cleanup, be certain to use your spatula or putty knife to put fair amounts of leftover paint onto a piece of plastic wrap for future use, securing it so that no air gets in. Clean your palette and wash your brushes with thinner before cleaning them with soap and warm water. Dry them with a paper towel before storing. To clean paint off of your hands, try olive oil or baby oil.

Some tips to consider are things such as not painting in direct sunlight. The sunlight will skew your interpretation of the oil colors as you mix them, resulting in a painting that looks much darker under natural lighting. It is also recommended that bottom layers of an oil painting use thinner and less oily mixes of paint than top layers, with each subsequent layer having more oil than the layer before.

Oil painting techniques include the use of a spatula or aputty knife

In short, creating a painting with oil colors is truly a unique work that is up to you. Many artists have chosen to employ the medium, each to different effect. Like any artistic form, the interpretation of the method is subjective and you can do anything that seems right. While there are many recommendations, the end result is up to you. When armed with the correct tools and the inspiration needed to create a work of art, making an oil painting can be a fun and beautiful means of self expression.

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How to paint with oil colors?