Saturday, February 27, 2010

Oiling Out

I like to paint wet in wet.  This forces you to become sensitive to your brush pressure and the paint viscosity.  Doing this allows you to use techniques usually done wet on dry.  When I do get into a situation where the paint dries before I am able to complete the painting, I either repaint areas so I can continue wet in wet or "oil out" to put the painting back into its as - painted condition.  This not only means wet but it also means that the various pigments look like they were just applied.  When a painting dries, the binder in the "fat" pigments are absorbed at a different rate than their "lean' cousins leaving the surface looking blotchy and the colour saturation uneven.  Oiling out normalizes this look so your eye has something consistent to see when continuing the painting process.

Oiling Out - a 12x12 in the studio

The process consists of the following steps;
1.     Apply Alkyd medium and Odourless Mineral Spirits mixed 50% each with a brush
2.     Let the mixture sit for a few minutes to make a bond with the underpainting
3.     Rub off the excess mixture with a lint free rag
4.     Continue the painting process

This procedure puts a layer of binder in the middle of the finished paint layers.  This is superior to using retouch varnish which deposits a layer of medium.

Here is the painting at the next stage of work.

Corn Snow Dreaming, 12x12, Oil on Canvas

If required, the process can be repeated until the painting arrives at its destination - the original (or modified) concept.

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