View Full Version : Safflower and Walnut Oil

09-01-2001, 12:11 PM
I understand that safflower oil or walnut oil can be used to clean brushes. Do these oils have the same flamable potential as linseed oil?

Thank you,


09-01-2001, 01:20 PM
No idea about the flammability, sorry, but I imagine either would condition the brushes really well.

This reminded me of a review of a new brand I read in a watercolorist's mag recently. The new company is making less toxic, more artist-friendly paints: watercolors with honey as the binder, and oils with walnut oil rather than linseed. The reviewing artist tried them, tested them, compared them to her usual brands, and rated both very highly. (And believe it or not, neither attracted insects.) I found it intriguing; made me wonder about the make-your-own-for-less possibilities. I'll look for the magazine & check for brand name and any mention of flammability in linseed vs. walnut & come back later with the results.


09-01-2001, 02:43 PM
walnut and safflower oil are both great for cleaning brushes. so is linseed oil, in fact, linseed oil is probably the most solvent oil. it also dries the fastest. i have never had a combustion problem with linseed oil but am aware of its combustibility.

walnut, safflower, and poppy oil are all drying oils like linseed oil. linseed oil is the fastest drying but also the most yellow. many manufacturers grind whites and light colors into safflower, poppy, or a mixture of linseed and a lighter oil. robert doak uses walnut oil in all his colors. i use it in some of mine. it slows the drying time of oil paints which is not so desirable for me. but its great as a painting medium. grinding pigment into safflower or walnut oil from the health food store is perfectly feasible, just make sure no vitamin e has been added to the oil. this is a common preservative and it will prevent your paintings from ever drying. ever.

using honey as a binder in watercolors is not a new idea. honey or sugar water are the traditional binders. gum arabic is used with or instead of honey nowadays but its not toxic at all, infact, its an ingredient in many processed foods.

making your own is definitely rewarding. there are many helpful topics on wetcanvas about homemade materials.

09-06-2001, 01:08 PM
Can I use the same bottle of walnut oil for painting that I bought for making vinagrettes? The only ingredient listed is Walnut Oil (no preservatives). Just what else can you use Walnut oil for:
a nice raspberry/walnut vinagrette- yes!
brush cleaning- yes?
in place of linseed oil as a painting medium- yes?
as a binder if you mix you own paints- yes?
a good massage oil???:)

I'm assuming that oils made for human consumption are at least as refined for impurities as those for painting??

Sorry if this seems dense.

09-06-2001, 05:44 PM
Originally posted by sarkana
just make sure no vitamin e has been added to the oil. this is a common preservative and it will prevent your paintings from ever drying. ever.

sarkana, this little bit of info got to me in just the nick of time. Thank you for saving me what could have been a lot of heartache. Anybody got a recipe for raspberry vinegar?