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Midwest Painter
07-28-2001, 10:53 AM
I realize that many artists have a love affair with Flake White. But, if you're like me, you tend to mix all colors with white. So, in effect, your entire painting is lead based.


Is the bias towards one particular type of white so strong that it outweighs the known health risks? If so, why?

bluochre
07-28-2001, 12:48 PM
i wouldn't be too concerned with handling lead. . . watch for the dust. . .wear a good dust mask and clean up carefully. . .if it's in oil, there's even less of a problem if you use common sense, like, no eating or smoking when you're handling lead paint. . . don't rub your eyes. . . wash hands frequently using soap, hot water and lots of friction. . .

Titanium
07-28-2001, 01:04 PM
If your worried about Lead Poisoning
[ and the whole family is concerned here if your studio is at home]

put your mind to rest and take a blood test for lead / cadmium twice a year or as often as your medical adviser suggests.

This will make much more sense than guessing.

Contact Monona Rossol and have a chat . She is firm , friendly and has always been pleasant to me.

The problem isn't just lead poisoning , it's all the stuff you get
from your water , household cleanser , wares , food , drink etc. and the combinations effects on your system.
Titanium

* Different preparations of Lead Whites offer , opacity , translucency , higher reactivity in oil and whiteness etc.
As far as I know no one makes the Old Master type ,
just Kremintz and maybe the Electrolysis type.

Too much lead metal reacting with oil , may also cause
cracking .

Read Up and help yourself out.

Midwest Painter
07-28-2001, 02:26 PM
Originally posted by Titanium
If your worried about Lead Poisoning
[ and the whole family is concerned here if your studio is at home]

put your mind to rest and take a blood test for lead / cadmium twice a year or as often as your medical adviser suggests.

This will make much more sense than guessing.

Contact Monona Rossol and have a chat . She is firm , friendly and has always been pleasant to me.

The problem isn't just lead poisoning , it's all the stuff you get
from your water , household cleanser , wares , food , drink etc. and the combinations effects on your system.
Titanium

* Different preparations of Lead Whites offer , opacity , translucency , higher reactivity in oil and whiteness etc.
As far as I know no one makes the Old Master type ,
just Kremintz and maybe the Electrolysis type.

Too much lead metal reacting with oil , may also cause
cracking .

Read Up and help yourself out.


My question is not how to handle lead or the associated health risks. But rather why should one use Flake White at all? Is there some problem with a Titanium white? I have used both Flake and Titanium (and Zinc on occasions) whites. From the tube, titanium is a much cooler shade than flake. But that's about the only difference I can observe. An itsy-bitsy touch of ocher will warm-up titanium quite nicely. It seems to me the best way to deal with the health risks of lead is to avoid it all together. I can't see flake white as a palette requirement. By eliminating flake white from my palette, my art environment is safer and my paintings won't someday be seen as an environmental and health hazard.


Why does one have to use flake white at all?

Titanium
07-28-2001, 03:39 PM
Lead White as a paint has a positive effect on the oil binder ,
enhances polymerisation , enhances longevity , gives flexibility and durability to the oil coat . Is a UV protector and aids in
pigment suspension , by forming soaps.
Also uses little oil to bind - 11 to 13 gms oil to 100 gms Lead White .
It has a proven track record in painting.

Titanium Dioxide , must be used as the Rutile form to prevent Chalking and still needs treating . Is inert in binding oil and sinks to the bottom of the oil binder . This can lead to excessive yellowing and there is also with exposure to light , later photo-chemical activity , leading to the degrading of some pigments and the oil .
The oil coat formed is excessively flexible [ some books say also soft ] and needs zinc oxide to help out .
Often most tubes saying Titanium White already contain some zinc oxide.

Oil used - Ti02 needs 22 to 13.9 gms oil to 100 gms pigment
Zno needs 20 gms oil to 100 gms pigment .

Some find the micronised particles of Ti02 , unpleasant to paint
with , though it is very opaque and even then too powerful for
use with earth mined ochres and siennas etc.

The work of Levison , shows that Zinc Oxide , can form soaps , aiding in pigment suspension and hardening the oil coat .
Usually you need 15 to 20 % by weight zinc oxide to 80% Titanium Dioxide .

Zinc Oxide is a coat hardener to the point of being brittle .

So to get anything as close in quality as Lead White , you have to use a combination of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide and often some stand oil .

This type of White [ Zn0/Ti02 ] is not time tested like Lead White and is best used only on panels or rigid supports .

I am not near my notes and going on memory , so please read up for yourself .
Hope this helps ,
Titanium

Verdaccio
07-28-2001, 04:17 PM
Further, lead white is the traditional ground upon which most old master works are painted on. You put lead white into your ground and your underpainting as part of building a paint structure that will last.

Lead white takes very little oil to make it into paint - this means that for layers underneath, it is a safer way of crafting your painting. Fat over lean applies not only in overpainting, but the entire painting. If you do your underpainting using low oil colors, your painting will last longer and look better (IMO). Switch to titanium (very high oil content paint) on your overpainting.