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Oil Painting Tips, Tricks and Techniques

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This is a collection of oil painting tips, tricks, techniques and secrets you can use whenever you hit a dead end. Keep them handy (bookmark this page) for your easy reference.

Oil Painting Tip For Salvaging Surplus Paint

Oil paint left on the palette can be saved by placing it in a deep dish and filling the dish with enough water to cover all the paint.

When ready to use the paint again, pour off the water and transfer the colors back to your palette. Your palette knife will facilitate the handling of the paint.

Oil Painting Technique For Removing Dried Paint from a Palette Knife

Oil paint that has dried hard on your palette knife can be removed by dipping the knife in paint remover.

A razor blade can also be used to scrape paint off, but take care not to nick the edge of the knife.


Oil Painting Tip: Holder for Palette Knife and Brushes

There is a clip-on gadget sold in five-and-ten-cent stores for use in the kitchen to hold knives and such equipment. It can be fastened to the side of your taboret or work table and makes a convenient place to keep your brushes and palette knife.

Oil Painting Trick: Storing Canvas

Do not keep your roll of canvas in a cold room. The sizing and white lead coating become brittle and are likely to crack when unrolled.

Oil Painting Tip: Making Your Own Textured Board

If you use a compressed-This is a collection of oil painting tips, tricks, techniques and secrets you can use whenever you hit a dead end. Keep them handy (bookmark this page) for your easy reference.

Oil Painting Tip For Salvaging Surplus Paint

Oil paint left on the palette can be saved by placing it in a deep dish and filling the dish with enough water to cover all the paint.

When ready to use the paint again, pour off the water and transfer the colors back to your palette. Your palette knife will facilitate the handling of the paint.

Oil Painting Technique For Removing Dried Paint from a Palette Knife

Oil paint that has dried hard on your palette knife can be removed by dipping the knife in paint remover. A razor blade can also be used to scrape paint off, but take care not to nick the edge of the knife.

Oil Painting Tip: Holder for Palette Knife and Brushes

There is a clip-on gadget sold in five-and-ten-cent stores for use in the kitchen to hold knives and such equipment. It can be fastened to the side of your taboret or work table and makes a convenient place to keep your brushes and palette knife.

Oil Painting Trick: Storing Canvas

Do not keep your roll of canvas in a cold room. The sizing and white lead coating become brittle and are likely to crack when unrolled.

Oil Painting Tip: Making Your Own Textured Board

If you use a compressed-fiber board you can produce your own texture when preparing the board for painting.

After the usual sandpapering to roughen the surface, give it a coat of white lead and allow it to dry.

Apply a second coat, but instead of brushing smoothly, pounce the paint with a stiff bristle brush.

An old brush cut flat like a stencil brush is excellent.

Unlike the ready-prepared mechanically textured boards that have a monotonously even surface, yours can have an interesting textured effect, as rough and uneven as you like.

The surface can always be sanded down if certain areas are too rough.

Oil Painting Tip: Resurfacing an Old Canvas

You can re-use a discarded painting, but do not work directly over the old paint. First scrape the ridges of paint down to a flat surface, using your palette knife and sandpaper.

Wipe thoroughly and coat it with white paint. The coating will dry faster and harder if the white lead is cut with copal oil varnish.

A brush can be used, but a palette knife will give a better working surface.

Apply the coating just heavily enough to cover the previous painting, and let it dry thoroughly before starting a new painting

Oil Painting Technique: Improving the Surface of a Cotton Canvas Panel

The procedure for resurfacing canvas can be used on new, stretched cotton canvas. The coating is particularly good for cheap cotton panels, which are notoriously absorbent. The subsequent painting will hold its color more readily because the paint will not sink in as much when it dries.

Oil Painting tip: Keeping Your Hands Clean

If you dislike the task of removing oil paint stains from your hands, there is a preparation that might interest you.

It is a hand cream that is applied before you start to paint;it forms a protective layer that is easily removed with water at the end of a work session, taking any oil stains with it.

Oil Painting Trick: Kerosene for Cleaning Brushes

Many painters use kerosene for cleaning oil brushes, claiming that it keeps the brush soft without affecting its spring.

This is done at the end of the day's work, never while painting. Kerosene mixed with oil paint will eventually darken the color.

Oil Painting Technique: Eliminating Excess Oil Content

If the oil paints with which you are working have too much oil content, squeeze them out on a newspaper first. The newspaper will absorb the excess oil, and the colors can then be transferred to your palette as needed for mixing.

Oil Painting Tips: Preserving Your Palette

Before using a new palette, pour a little linseed oil on it. Then, using a soft, clean rag, rub oil over the entire surface and repeat this on the reverse side. Allow the oil to sink into the wood thoroughly.

Oil Painting Trick: Getting the Most Out of a Tube of Paint

Always squeeze the paint from the base of the tube. As the paint is used, roll up the bottom of the tube.

It is surprising how much more paint can be obtained from a tube by following this simple procedure.

I really hope you've found these oil painting tips, tricks, techniques and all useful.

Done with these oil painting tips, tricks, techniques and all? Go Back to the Intro to Oil Painting Page.

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Rokeby Venus, by Velazquez

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