View Full Version : Extra-greasy Oil Pastels...

02-14-2008, 04:06 PM
Today, I received my parcel from www.kamapigments.com (http://www.kamapigments.com) that I had ordered on Friday. I ordered an Italian earth oil stick at a price of $2.40 (I will quote all prices in Canadian Dollars but the American prices will be similar or less) as well as the extravaganza set of 20 extra-greasy oil pastels at a price of $36.75. I also ordered a couple of tubes of oil paints to try. The shipping and handling added $5.10 to the cost and everything arrived in good condition.

I think these are also available in the U.S. at www.pigmentsplus.com (http://www.pigmentsplus.com) .

I like that the colours are named after the pigments used and are not simply descriptive.

I have some Shiva Artists Paintstiks and Winsor & Newton Slim Oilbars. The Kama Oilstick at 1/2" x 5" was similar in size and handling to the Oilbars. It is very greasy and quite soft so care must be taken in removing the dried film. I find that if you store the Oilbars and sticks in a small Ziplock type closed container in the fridge they take much longer to form the film.

The extra-greasy oil pastels also had a dried paint film but it was softer and more easily removed. They are 1/2" x 5" each so have easily more than double the volume of the other brands of oil pastels. They also have the distinct smell of linseed oil. I tried Sennelier, Holbein Artist and the Kama whites on Colourfix Terracotta primer on paper and found the opacity to be about the same with all three brands. The Kama handled much like the Holbein and had a similar consistency. The Kama was a little less greasy than the Sennelier. I also tried the cadmium orange in both the Holbein and Kama. The Kama was slightly redder in hue but handled similarly with the same opacity. Then I tried the Kama and Sennelier yellow ochre. The Sennelier was very, very slightly more opaque and richer in hue. For blending the Kamas were comparable to the other brands and blend well with the other brands. The Kamas are very slightly softer than Neopastels. Because of their size the Kamas would not be as good for detailed work.

I suspect that the Kamas will eventually dry so I would not use them on top of the other brands. I would also store them in a closed container in the fridge. They would probably be wonderful for large expressive sketches. Because of the linseed oil they should probably not be used on uncoated paper.

I think, Jane, that these are probably similar to the oil pastels you made with linseed oil.

Pat, it would be interesting to compare these to the R&F pigment sticks.

Mainly because of their large size, identified pigments and low cost I am very glad to have discovered these. Thank you again, Bill, for the link.

Has anyone else used these?

I welcome your questions, comments and opinions.


02-14-2008, 04:38 PM

You have paid me back many times over with the sage wisdom and down to earth advice I have gotten from your posts!! Besides, you found the version of the site on this side of the Pond and those two video clips demonstrating their micronized pigment products that mix with oil, water, egg, etc. with virtually no effort were really interesting. I keep running into the issue of permanance and quality, but if the pigment is the same and the cocentration satisfactory then working quality of the various binders really seem to determine the usefulness and suitability of various brands.

Does this make sense, or am I over simplifying?

BTW, you got me thinking about lightfast tests and I am thinking about starting some tests but setting up a special light box rather than sun exposer (perhaps even with UV since that is the real killer in the fading arena according to my understanding). Besides, who hangs their paintings in the sun anyway??? It seems that the real concern should be artificial lighting effects and these can be tests carried out more quickly because you can have continuous exposure, use various sorts of light sources and compare standardized swatches of various brands and/or comparable colors made from different mixtures of pigments as identified by their CI names on the sticks. Does this sould like a reasonable approach? You had indicated some interest in such information.


Pat Isaac
02-14-2008, 05:11 PM
Thanks for that info, Wendell. I have an email in for their catalog and am planning on ordering some. My only concern was that the OPs might be made the same way as the oil sticks and harden. Do they? In any event I am really planning on trying them. I'll let you know what I find out.
That would be a good test, Bill as It's true, no one hangs their paintings in the sun.


02-14-2008, 05:24 PM
Interesting stuff, Wendell. They delivered really quickly and the shipping cost is the same as I pay Omer Deserres/Loomis and Toles in Montreal for shipping. I like your idea of storing your Oil Sticks/Bars in the fridge in a closed container - do you have any problems with odours escaping into the fridge? Also you said fridge - I know some people put their oil palette in the freezer. Did you try that? It sounds like they are similar to my OP experiments with the linseed oil, given the odour, but they seem to be more opaque than oil sticks more like OPs, so I guess that means they have less oil than the sticks do? Jane

02-14-2008, 07:27 PM
Bill, thank you very much for the compliments but I don't know about the "sage wisdom" part. You make sense to me. I make my living from the sale of my paintings in galleries so I have to be very cautious about the materials I use and their protection, e.g. all works on paper are framed under glass and any varnish used must be removable. I think you will agree that the great artists (Van Gogh for one) in their day were very daring in their style, etc. but they also used the very best materials and were cautious in most aspects of their technique. The condition of their works attests to that.

There is one small exception to hanging paintings in the sun. If an oil painting is stored in the dark it can become a bit yellowish. If this happens it should be hung in the sun for a few hours to return to normal and for display should be hung in a well lit area.

I did read somewhere exactly how to conduct lightfastness tests but I can't remember where. Be sure to include some pale yellows, carmine reds, pinks and violets as these are often the most fugitive colours.

Pat, the extra-greasy oil pastels and the paint sticks are very different from each other. The oil sticks are shinier and greasy much like the Oilbars and Shiva Paintstiks. After a while they feel a bit like vaseline. The dried film is quite hard whereas the dried film on the oil pastels is soft but firm.

Unfortunately, I didn't label my tests so I can't tell apart the Kama, Senneliers, Holbeins or Neopastels. The Kamas go on matte but when you finger blend them they can turn a bit shiny much like the Holbeins. I expect that they will dry eventually to a soft film but will probably take quite a while. This could be a disadvantage for some or an advantage for others. It would certainly be an advantage in layering but would take patience. It's certainly too soon for me to tell you definitively if they dry completely. However the sticks of oil pastel are dry to the touch.

Jane, I'm so used to the smell of linseed oil that I hardly am aware of it any more but I didn't notice a problem. You could always try one or even two sealed Ziplock bags on the container. Anyway I think linseed is an edible oil and I heard somewhere that it is an ingredient in dog food. For oil painting I use a disposable 12" x 16" paper palette that I seal in a Masterson palette when not in use. Sometimes I do put it in the freezer. When oil painting I use very fluid paints and soft brushes. Your last sentence sounds exactly like what I found. The ones I tried so far are like Holbeins in texture.


02-14-2008, 08:31 PM
I should point out that these oil pastels need to have the skin at the end peeled off with a knife. They also contain pigments such as cobalt and cadmium. They would not be suitable for use by children or around where children are present.


02-15-2008, 02:58 AM
Wendell and Pat--

I guess it's the scientist in me, but the testing of things like lightfastness does strike my fancy and could be something that makes me feel I am doing something that contributes while I am still in the early stages of learning the "push paint around" and come out with a horse that doesn't need assistance lifting its enormous head!

I'm thinking of using white water color sheets with printed labels with brand, number, color name, and, if available, CI names and numbers. Do you think paper color would be a factor? I was inclined to think white would also reflect and peerhaps increase the intensity of the exposure. White of black paper would seem best to me, otherwise the optical effects of various color papers interracting with the colors of the pastels might make subtle differences hard to see or suggest difference where they might not exist. If I do this, I want to make sure I get advice from you and do it well rather than haphazardly so that it can be duplicated with other brands or new formulations, should they come out. I have and extensive collection of all sorts of brands from the bottom to the top of the barrel. Do you think it would be useful to include some of the more common "stduent" grade ones since there are those that use them. Also, while the pigment concentration is much lower, thus the vibrancy of the color probably much less, if the pigments used are the same then I would expect that lightfastnesss might not be the main issue in steering clear of them; rather low pigment density with more filler combined with generally poorer working characteristics that make the sometimes difficult to handle.

I will try and run my basic experimental design, as well as selection of brand and pigments by you to make sure the ones that are of greater concern are included.

Pass any suggestions on, please, and I will set this up and report the results.


02-15-2008, 03:04 AM
Another quick thought. Has anyone ever tested the lightfastness of the papers and their colors?? If you work like Pat and completely cover the paper with medium then it probably is not a consideration. However, if you allow (as many traditional pastelists do) the paper to show through in a "broken color" effect and contribute as another pictoral element, the the permanenc of the colors in the paper become a concern, do they not?

Any thoughts?


Pat Isaac
02-15-2008, 07:37 AM
You pose interesting questions. My first thought would be to use 100% rag WC paper at least 140lb. I do think you be affected visually by a colored surface and definitely try some of the student grade pastels.


02-15-2008, 10:37 AM
OK, now I'm confused. I thought that the thing that distinguishes OPs from oil bars or sticks is that the oil used in OPs is non-drying, while oil bars/sticks contain drying oil. Since the oil in these extra-greasy OPs is linseed, a drying oil (at least that's what it seems from your description, Wendell), doesn't that mean they're not really OPs at all, but oil bars or sticks?

I ask because of the warnings I've seen here about mixing OPs into wet oil paint. If the oil used in these extra-greasy OPs is indeed linseed, wouldn't the same caution pertain to their use with OPs made with non-drying oil? I'd appreciate some clarification of this issue.

Despite my confusion, I appreciate the info you've provided, Wendell. The product sounds like a well-made one, and worth exploring no matter what the answer to my question may be. I'm tempted... :D

Bill: Just FYI, Kenneth Leslie, in his book, Oil Pastel: Materials and Techniques for Today's Artist, describes some extensive testing of OPs for lightfastness that he completed. The book, unfortunately, is out of print, but you still can find copies for sale online (for outrageous prices :eek:), and sometimes in local libraries.

If I recall, Leslie found some surprising results at the time, with some of the artist brands not holding up so well, while the Cray-Pas brand, not as highly thought of, did pretty well in his tests. I think I read someplace that one of the reasons for the re-working a few years back of Sennelier's color line had to do with lightfastness problems with a few of their OPs, now corrected by the discontinuation of a several original colors, and the addition of many other new ones. It may be that the other manufacturers have also worked to correct the problem in the years since Leslie's book was published (1999), so a testing of all the current color lines of the various manufacturers would be valuable. BTW, I've read both Leslie's book and Eliot's slightly more recent (2002) Oil Pastel: for the Serious Beginner, and of the two, Leslie's is far superior imho.

One other thing to consider, Bill, is that the testing for lightfastness done by archival scientists is done under highly controlled circumstances, with special lighting equipment. It might be worthwhile to try to hunt down some of this research material, to see where the gaps may be, before starting your own experiments.

02-15-2008, 12:10 PM
To Bill and all others interested. It just so happens that I work at a testing labe which has U.V. exposure testing equipment. I would be willing to supervise an appropriate test. From what I understand, the coolest temperature we could run would be 50 degrees Celsius (that's 122 degrees Fahrenheit). If that's suitable, then we could run a test for about a week which should offer an accelerated estimate of the logevity of different pastels. Exactly how long (in dog years) this translates to, is uncertain, but at least it should give us a good idea. Personally, I have a very limited selection of OP brands, so we will have to work out some sort of standard sample (representative colors; on the same paper) that people can send to me. I expect we will mask part of each sample to see a "before" and "after". Both will be exposed to the elevated temperatures. Please let me know if this sounds like something you'd like to pursue. Ed

02-15-2008, 12:51 PM
Annie, when I was trying out recipes for making OPs, we did agree among us that OPs are made with non-drying oil (mineral), and that Oil Sticks(Shiva) and Oil Bars(W&N) are made with drying oil (linseed). However, because of the lack of complete information from manufacturers, some people have questioned whether this is entirely true. I still keep this distinction myself, and feel that anything that forms a skin, no matter how thin, should be considered an oilstick/bar as it obviously contains at least some linseed oil. Kama clearly doesn't agree.

Ed, really interesting idea. Might the temperature cause some melting of the OPs? I'm not sure how that would affect the actual light fastness test. Jane

02-15-2008, 01:21 PM
Bill, your replies are great! For a simple test of lightfastness you could make vertical stripes of the different colours on a sheet of paper and then cut it in two. Put one half in the light for a while and the other half in the dark. Then compare the two. Alternatively you can cover one half with matboard and put it in the light. After a while take off the matboard and compare the two. For laboratory type tests you would probably need to use a blue scale. One source that I know of in Canada is Carr McLean ( www.carrmclean.ca ). They also sell conservation boxes etc. for the storage of artworks. I just went to the website of ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) and typed lightfastness into the search box and a lot of things came up. Other good references are Canadian Conservation Institute ( www.cci-icc.gc.ca ) and the Smithsonian Museum Conservation Institute ( www.si.edu/mci/ ). Someone with a science background would understand some of the stuff better than this old artist. Other than lightfastness some of the problems with the vehicle of some oil pastels would be wax bloom as well as the breakdown of adherence to the support. The problem of certain coloured papers made with dye has already been addressed in the soft pastels forum. Coated papers made with pigment seem to be less of a problem.

Ed, thank you, thank you, thank you! I just came accross your reply as we are cross posting.

Annie, the Kama oil pastels seem to be somewhere in between a drying oil bar and a non-drying oil pastel having some of the advantages and also some of the disadvantages of each. Once you get the film off the ends of them the application is more like oil pastels with much less oil than the oil bars. They also blend more like the oil pastels. It is difficult to describe the feel of them. I think they could fall into the category of love 'em or hate 'em.

While they blend well with other oil pastels, I think it would be best to use the Kama pastels alone as an underlayer for the other brands or to do works using only the Kama oil pastels. It would probably be best to let the Kamas dry a while before putting a non-drying layer over them. I will comment further on the drying issue in a few weeks. I've only had them for a day.

It must be noted that the Kama oil pastels come in the pure pigment colours much like most oil bars so a lot more mixing is required. There is also some inconsistency between the different colours. I have some difficulty in using the pthalo blue but the cadmium reds are wonderful.

In my opinion the Kama oil pastels would be best for large bold expressive works.


02-15-2008, 02:10 PM
Thank you, Jane for your good reply.

It is probably best not to directly mix the Kamas with the non-drying oil pastels or with the oilier oil bars or sticks until we know more.

The Senneliers contain safflower oil which is considered a semi-drying oil and which will probably eventually dry although perhaps not in our lifetime. Does the Sennelier fixative turn this into a drying oil?

Could this be a language thing where the French definition of pastel is broader than the English definition?

There is a similar problem in oil painting where you have alkyd paints, alkyd mediums for oil paints, oil paints with linseed oil, oil paints with safflower oil, water-soluble oil paints and so on. Where do oil bars, oil sticks and pigment sticks fit in?


02-15-2008, 02:35 PM
Pat- Thanks for the views. I'm excited about trying this.

AnnieA- I'm sure Wendell will have much better understanding of this, but if you visit the Kama site and its western counterpart Wendell provided (which I'm sure you have) you can find, eventually, information that cleared up what initially seemed confusing to me as well.

Fishfan - Thanks for the offer. Jane's comments regarding the temperature are pertinent, but that, too, is an issue that must be recognized and dealt with in the role of curation of art works. While this would not be comparable to light tests without the temp, I think it would be worth trying and as I think about experimental design I will put thought into this as well.

Thanks to all, don't expect rapid posts of results because I want to get as much input as possible BEFORE we set out on this and make sure the information collected will be useful, not just interesting. (BTW, I do not mean this statement in any way to be taken as discouraging short term observations and experimentation. That is good and what provides the real source of ideas for more elaborate tests.)

Keep ideas comming and when I have a good handle on how to best approach this I will probably start a new thread to set out a plan and get feedback before starting. Thanks for all the interest!!


02-15-2008, 02:41 PM
Wendell- Thanks for the great ideas. Got a phone call writing my last post and was delayed so some of what I said was covered by others. My apologies.


02-15-2008, 03:02 PM
:clap: :clap:

Good points. As usual!!

I think your comments about the paints, etc. what what I was really trying to get at in the "What defines an art medium" thread, although my tendency toward chaotic thought patterns might have made that difficult to see.


Pat Isaac
02-15-2008, 04:20 PM
That was my concern with the Kama OPs. In any event I know I will eventually order some, they are just too tempting. I'm not sure where the oil and pigment sticks fit, but I think if you were entering them into a show and the painting were 100% oil stick, it would go into the oil category.
When I used them with my HS students and submitted their work to Scholastic, they were considered oil paintings.
BTW, Leslie's book was published in 1990, so much of that information may have changed.


02-15-2008, 04:43 PM
Jane: Thanks for the clarification. Especially since there are warnings against mixing products containing drying oil with those containing non-drying oil, the distinction seems like a necessary and wise one. Because OPs and oil bars/sticks are both relatively new mediums, I suspect this confusion will continue for a while. I wonder if there's been any forward movement in the effort to get an ASTM standard for OPs. I remember Ryan (graeler) tried to get the ball rolling over a year ago, but I haven't heard anything since. http://www.amien.org/forums/showthread.php?t=239 Pat, Jane, do either of you know?

Bill: I tried getting to the product information page for the extra greasy OPs on the Kama site, but it gives me a 404 - page not found error. If you can access it, would you be so kind as to post the information you've been referring me to? I seem to recall seeing the info at one time in the past, and after much discussion here in the forum, we all came to the conclusion that the product was an oil stick vs an OP, but it's been a while. If you are able to access more definative info, posting it would be useful. Thanks. And best wishes on your lightfastness testing project. I'll look forward to more on that.

Wendell: Thanks for the info on the Kama OPs, although I have to say I'm still confused by all this. :confused: I think your suggestion not to combine the two (at least in the wet state - once the Kamas had dried as a first layer, there should be no problem) until more is known sounds sensible.

Pat Isaac
02-15-2008, 04:49 PM
Annie, I have not heard anymore about the standard. I even signed on to that site and said I would help at the time, but he would do the work. No more since then.


02-15-2008, 05:15 PM
Pat, I just went to the R&F forum and a rep. of the company wrote that the proportion of wax to pigment and linseed oil is 8%. When asked if one could increase the proportion of wax she replied that they tried it in the lab and the proportion could be increased to 50% and they still worked well although the paint layer was thinner and they took longer to dry. This seems to me to be similar to the Kama Extra-greasies. Now I want to try the pigment sticks but can't afford it right now. Are they like the W&N Oilbars or the Shiva Paintstiks?

As I never enter shows with a definition of medium and work in several media the classification issue doesn't concern me too much. However longevity and the acceptance by the buying public does.

Bill, thanks for your thoughtful replies. Now I'm trying to figure out what you apologized for.

Annie, thanks for your contribution to the discussion. Like you I think that caution is always advisable in the use of new materials and techniques. Now I just have to wait and see how long it takes for them to dry. So far no sign of it.


Pat Isaac
02-15-2008, 05:22 PM
Wendell, I do think they are like the Kama sticks. They are much softer and more like oil paint than the Shiva sticks or the oil bars. The latter are harder.
I had to buy 2 at a tie to build up a reasonable amount of colors. I do love the richness of the pigment.
Caution is definitely advisable.


02-15-2008, 06:17 PM
This will be quick, gotta run. But try these links:

Look for links to videos on this page:

Try these to get to video:



Let me know if this works.

Bill Gotta Run

02-15-2008, 06:36 PM
Pat, all the oilbars and oilsticks I tried yesterday are now shiny and sticky. The Kama Extra-greasy Oil Pastels, Senneliers and Holbeins are all almost matte and only a bit sticky. The Kama Extra-greasy quinacridone violet is practically identical to the Sennelier Bordeaux. I will try to post some photos over the weekend. I need to do another sheet of samples as the one I've done is pretty messy by now.


02-15-2008, 07:19 PM
Bill: The only question I have is what materials go into the E-G OPs from Kama. Somehow I doubt they cover that in their video, but thanks for the links.

Wendell: Thanks for the ongoing reports, and for your kind comment regarding my own contribution to the discussion. If these really are OPs, they're a great value. Did you get a materials data sheet with them or other info from the company regarding their composition, by any chance? My curiousity is really peaked now. :cat:

Pat: I think there may be a 1999 edition of the Leslie book, but you may be right about it being even earlier. Either way, some of the material will indeed be out of date. My speculation in the earlier post was whether publication of the book in the 90s may have been part of what prompted the Sennelier reformulation.

I also had been thinking that if an OP of a particular brand/hue came out ok in Leslie's tests, there might not be a need to re-test, but I suppose it's also possible that some manufacturers may have gone to cheaper, less lightfast pigments in the interim. Bill may find the book worth a look anyway, if only for the discussion of the technique Leslie used to run his tests. I seem to recall he took a full year exposing his samples to sunlight!

02-15-2008, 08:16 PM
Annie, I didn't get a data sheet with the order. I suspect that it is a very small company run by a group of artists. Of course that kind of thing gets my sympathy right away so I may be biased. They do sell pigments and the names of colours of the E-G OPs are the the same as the pigment colours. I think I am right in assuming that these are made from the pigments that they sell. The pigments have the standard Colour Index International numbers which coordinate with the chemical compositions in the "Artist's Colour Manual" by Simon Jennings. I do know they contain linseed oil because of that unmistakable smell and I would presume that they also contain wax. I do have their toll free number and email address and can PM it to you if you wish. I am waiting for the catalogue which might contain more information. By the way, if these are oil sticks they're an even better value.

The E-G OPs are quite different from the oil sticks also sold by Kama.

The big drawback is removing the dried film from the end which can be maddening. A couple of the colours are inconsistent as well. Keeping them in a sealed container in the fridge or freezer should help.

I have often wanted a material with the handling of an OP but that will eventually dry without the use of chemicals, fixatives or varnishes. I suspect that they will dry with a soft film so should be framed under glass just to be sure. I would not varnish a soft film because the varnish might not be removable.

I hope this helps...


02-15-2008, 09:01 PM
I have often wanted a material with the handling of an OP but that will eventually dry without the use of chemicals, fixatives or varnishes.

Amen to that, Wendell - I think we'd all love that!

I appreciate the additional info. I think I'll pass on calling them though. I'm not planning a purchase any time real soon, and especially since these are working artists, I don't want to unnecessarily take up their time. Let us know if the catalogue provides the answers.

...and good for you for supporting small, artist-run companies. I try to do that when I can, and I, too, have a particularly good feeling about this one, for some reason.

02-16-2008, 03:05 AM
Annie and Wendell--
I'm not sure what I was apologizing for either. This is one of those days my mind started whirling with some ideas but it was not a good day for that to happen since my wife and I sing in a master chorale group and whe had a performance tonight and I was trying to cram in as much dialogue as I could and was rushing a bit to fast.

The first link I gave, Annie, was just to the page that contained the clips, but also contained links back to other parts of the site. Wendell I am almost certain you are correct avbout this being a small, artist run company after watching the video clips. The thrust of their message seems to be overprice paints and that new technologies have made it possible to prepare paints without the age old glass plate and heavy glass muller (sp.?). My impression was that these things were developed as much for themselves as for marketing. I can see where Jane was coming from on some confusion about the site since some of the links take you to another site (something like TD Artist serivices that have links back to the pigment products but also advertise what, if I understood correctly, professionall art critiqueing services along with CD tutorials of some sort. I got the impression it was all the same company but two facets, one tangible iitems, the other services. However, I haven't had the time to explore that much.


I can't help it though! While I loved my job, I haven't found so much stimulating dialogue that piques my interest in a long time and I really appreciuate the nice comments I get, even when I stick my foot in my mouth. Let's just say, Wendel, it was not a good week for me determining the proper gender pronouns to use based on name. I'm still a little red faced about that one. But, Yusuke, I think, probably got a good laugh out of it at my expense. The other thing is that I'm still such a "noob" as Bob calls it, that I'm afraid I'll unintentionally offend someone because when my mind starts racing and I get excited I enter the state my Mother used to call "Putting my mouth in motion before my mind is in gear!!!"

This has got to be the neatest place I have ever found on the Web and I've been doing computers since before there was a WWW! What nice folks I keep meeting.

:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

As we said in the south, I'm in Hog Heaven! (That's means its good for you natural born northerners, etc.)

Pat Isaac
02-16-2008, 07:52 AM
Thanks for the update on the OPs, Wendell. I am also waiting for the catalog as I am very intrigued by these pigments.
Annie I have Leslie's book and started using it in the early 90's with my students. I'll have a look at his tests, but won't get to it until I go to my studio on Monday.
They do offer on line critiques and instruction.
I don't have a computer in my studio so that is one way I get away from WC...go to the studio.....:D


02-16-2008, 03:51 PM
Bill, I live in the country on Prince Edward Island and have often heard the term "Hog Heaven" but here it's not necessarily a compliment. Around here we say "Happy as a pig in s***!". I better get back to painting now.


02-16-2008, 10:27 PM
Are you putting me on, or do I have to chalk up another check mark in the "Oh Good Grief" column again? Well frankly I'm opting to stay with Hog Heaven, given the alternative you offered!!


02-16-2008, 10:52 PM

One day my exceeding neat, organized but critical older sister came to visit when I looked like a slob in my messy upstairs studio. She referred to it as my "Hog Heaven". I have used and heard the other expression many times mostly from my brother when he jokingly refers to me.


02-17-2008, 12:14 PM
I want to apologize to anyone who may have been offended by the vulgarity of my last two posts.

Today, I quickly made up a sample board of the colours in the Extravaganza set of the Kama "Extra-greasy Oil Pastels:


Each colour was blended with the titanium white except for the white where it goes from thick to thin. A colour shaper was used for blending. A surface primed with Colourfix Soft Umber was used.

Some colours were easier to work with than others.


Pat Isaac
02-17-2008, 12:43 PM
Beautiful colors, Wendell. Did you find the yellow transparent or are they more opaques that the Senns or Holbeins?
No offense taken.


02-17-2008, 01:13 PM
Thanks for posting the color chart. I have been thinking of making color charts from my various brands of OPs along with the color name, CI names of Pigments where available, and digital photos of the actual OPs in small groups of about 5 to show their color. Would that be a useful thing for people. I kind of started this by photographing all the Erengi ArtAspirers in the set I just got since the labels had the names, CI and lightfast ratings and once I start using them I can't usually read the labels anymore.

Another thing that crossed my mind the other day was when we post work, it is often difficult to accurately judge color rendition in the digital environment becasue of the variables involved with different monitors, color management systems, printers, cameras, etc. What would be your opinion, and Pat and Jane as well, of developing a small standard color strip image that could be downloaded for prininting and placed next to the scanned or photographed images to give some idea of how the color rendition compares to some know color standards? If so, any ideas on colors, brands, etc. I know there are standard color bar images available, but many might not be able to easily obtain them and this would use the same medium the works are in.

Another quick question, I seem to be having trouble getting images to upload lately. I get the image in the upload tool, but when I click on it, it doesn't seem to show up in the post. Worked before but not now. Any suggestions?

BTW, absolutely no offense taken on my part, also check you PM for something I sent you, Wendell.

02-17-2008, 01:24 PM
Thanks, Pat. I found the cadmium yellows to have about the same opacity as the other brands and would love to find a really opaque cadmium yellow deep. However the Naples yellow deep is a gorgeous colour and quite opaque. The cadmium reds, terra d'Italia and cobalt cerulean are all very opaque and easy to work with. Quinacridone violet is indistinguishable from Sennelier bordeaux except that it may be a touch more bluish. The pthalo blues and greens are fairly transparent and a bit difficult to work with. I adjusted the brightness of the photo a bit using the Soft Umber as a guide. The pigment load of all colours was surprisingly good.

Again I don't know if these should be classified as oil pastels or oil sticks. You do get good value for the money in my opinion. They neither handle like nor do they look like my Oilbars.

In my opinion these would be best used for large "plein air" sketches and are worth a try. Again, peeling off the dried film is a pain but it doesn't seem to form if they're kept in the fridge or freezer. Seal them well so the linseed oil smell doesn't migrate.


Pat Isaac
02-17-2008, 01:46 PM
Thanks, Wendell, I guess all Cad yellows are transparent, but the Naples does look good. I am still waiting on the catalog, which should come this week.
Bill, the color chart sounds good, but I'm not sure everyone would be able to match it given all the variables and then the color may not be like their painting. Don't know a lot about this, as I just see if the image looks like my painting. Not sure why the uploader isn't working. I just tried it and it worked. Your image does not come up in the post until you post it.
Try it again.


02-17-2008, 01:50 PM
Hi Bill,

I make colour charts as soon as I buy any pastels. Then they are put in plastic sleeves and kept in a three ring binder for reference. Sometimes when looking at the open-stock colours at online stores, I click on the print preview and the list comes up with empty spaces where the colours should be. It's a bit hit-or-miss but try it. If it works I then print the pages in black and white on cover stock. I then colour them in. You have all the necessary information for re-ordering and can see at a glance what colours are missing.

Just when you get the colours right in the photo it seems to change again in uploading. I don't know a good solution so try to give a lot of information as to colours and surface used.

The photos will probably upload better if you click on "Go Advanced" when posting.

Thanks for the kind words...


02-17-2008, 01:56 PM
Pat and Wendell-

Thanks for your suggestions.


02-17-2008, 06:32 PM
Wendell: I want to thank you for a wonderfully informative thread, and thanks to everyone else who has participated as well.

I've just given it an "excellent" rating, and hope that others will join me in doing the same. This thread is worth saving...

02-21-2008, 11:43 AM
The Kama Extra-greasy oil pastels are now slowly starting to dry after a week. Naturally the raw umber was the first to dry. There is no change in appearance between the dry and the freshly applied. The only way to tell if they are dry is to touch them. The smell of linseed oil goes away in drying. Probably because of the wax in them, you can polish them to a nice soft shine.

I am definitely ordering the colours that I don't have.


Pat Isaac
02-21-2008, 01:51 PM
Thanks for the update. Wendell. I am ordering supplies today.


02-21-2008, 02:19 PM
The following is a summary of some communications I exchanged with Pigments Plus . I posted this in the Oil Gusher and Pat suggested I post it here as more might see it that would be interested:

I'm not really sure where to post the information I got since this has been discussed in many threads. I haven't heard from Elliot yet, but I will try to summarize what I discovered about the Kama site and Pigments Plus. There is some boilerplate in some of the emails so I think probably the easiest will be to try to give you excerts and impressions.

First, Pat, if you go to the Kama site (France), the catalog is downloadable in PDF format and you can order online there.

I went to the Pigments Plus (PPS for sake of brevity) site and requested their catalog. (When you say Kama, do mean the PPS for the catalog request? If so you should have gotten an email from artist Terrance Depietro with a toll free number for US and Canada that anyone requesting a catalog will get. He wants people to request the catalogs as that is how he tracks who has requested one.

It started with my seeing an announcement of a tips and tricks brochure available and just mailed the PPS site the following email:
You mention a brochure on "Tips and Tricks" that is available. How does one obtain that.

Your site seems to be related to the French site Kama Artist's Supplies. They have a downloadable PDF catalog. Is this the same as yours or your operations independent?

I am interested in Oil Pastels, i.e. non-skin forming sticks. Your Extra Greasy OPs seem to be really firmer Oil Sticks.

How would one find the binder base formula for making a true OP and what ingredients are critical to altering the working properties (firmness vs. creamy, dry vs. moist)?

Of particular interest would be a binder formula that would be watersoluble and have the creamy working characteristics of the student grade OPs marketed by Crayola under the Portfolio brand. Could your water dispersed pigments be added to a similar binder (if it could be made) to make an artist grade water soluble OP with the firm but creamy application of the Portfolio OPs??

Any information you could give would be greatly appreciated. Especially interested in components needed to make true Oil Pastel binders with various softness characteristics.

Your company is very interesting and informative. It would be nice if your catalog was downloadable as a PDF document. Also more demonstrations like your video clips would be great, dealing with ingredients in various binders for different media.

Thanks for any information you can provide.

I then requested the catalog and at the head of the "form letter" Terrance responded with some personal comments: (I have deleted the toll free number and his personal email address since he would like people to request the catalog and then he will send it to them. Pat, some of this is boilerplate and "ad-like", but I think there is enough interest to include as much info as possible. Hopefully this is not violating any taboos since I am not pushing his products, just providing insight I obtained) He responded:

Hello William,
Thank you for requesting the Art Materials Catalog!

The catalog is going out in the mail and to help you get familiar with the
products and those who will service you, I am including the Toll Free Telephone number: [deleted]

Kama (Vincente) is one of the original members of our little band of: artist-mavericks. The catalog is the same. I am mainly involved with putting out info on materials. I will be making more little videos and expanding the web sites. The skinless sticks would be more of a 'mineral-oil' type formula. Kama uses linseed oil, which would be more professional. Pigments, wax, parafin and an oil would be the materials; then you would have to make a cast-form and try different quantities to arrive at the stick.(Vincente started to formulate the oil sticks in my studio in Quebec City many years ago, he is a great young man and a well of empirical expertise). I hope that helps and I hope you will stay in touch.......the usual form letter follows. Terrance
Also you can visit the Kama Pigment site:
http://www.kamapigment.com/index_en.html (http://www.kamapigment.com/index_en.html)
SHOP at the online catalog from: http://www.kamapigment.com/asp/main.asp?llang=1 (http://www.kamapigment.com/asp/main.asp?llang=1)

[What follows is the form letter to anyone requesting catalog-Bill]

By requesting the catalog through this site, you also have my personal
email address; so if you have any questions feel free to email me Terrance
DePietro.(anyone who requests a catalog through this site can contact me and
if I can assist them, I will). By the way, we do not sell lists or client
info; we are a network of artists who manufacture products for artists, use
those products for our own artwork, instruct in materials & techniques, and
exhibit along side artists who use these quality materials.

About Kama Pigments: It is an artist-run-business with a great reputation
for quality and economy to their clients. They have been part of our network
of artists from the beginning (1992). You will find it to be a great
experience working with them and you will save money in the process.

Stay in touch and have your friends request catalogs through the same site
because we sometimes have other materials available from new associates and we do
show artwork to galleries, curators and collectors.


So, as you can see the Online Kama catalog is basically the same as the PPS one. His response to my question about tips and tricks was brief:

Tips & Tricks is in reference to the Aqua-Dispersions....I will be putting a section like this online in the coming months.(Kama can provide you with the info)

I responded with a more detailed email as follows (some of this is mundane, but I want to be accurate in what transpired because I think he has access to expertise and seems willing to share it):

Thanks very much for your response. I stumbled upon the Kama site quite by accident and posted a link in the Oil Pastel forum on WetCanvas.com. Another member from Canada went to the French version and discovered the link to your site and posted it and recently ordered some materials from your company (He was pleased to find an artist run company and glad to support it). Would you mind if I posted the text of your response on the OP forum (I would omit the toll free number if you wish) since I think a number of people have expressed interest in the site and are interested in learning more. (I would include the info you sent on upcoming tips and tricks). I am pretty much a late starter, recently retired but really interested in developing some art skills in retirement. I also am interested in, and have discussed on the forum, developing some "experiments" with OP materials regarding things like lightfastness that would return results quicker than just placing strips in the sun. Others are really interested in finding a way to produce a "varnish-like" material to protect the surface of Oil Pastel works since they are made, as you point out, with non-drying oils. The desire would be to have something that would allow framing without glass, but not produce a shiny, glossy coat as some of the current OP fixatives do. Any ideas or communications you might be willing to share regarding this would be greatly appreciated. The WC forum posts are not intended to "advertise" but simply provide people with information they find useful.

I had a feeling from looking at the Kama site that you were open to talking about materials since there was so much information on general make up of various things.

If you send me any information you would not wished to be shared on the public forum, simply tell me and I will not post it. However, I think many will be quite interested in your insights. knowledge, and suggestions since your company is Artist owned and would understand the problems often faced. Additionally, many of the OP'ers seem to either continue or have migrated to OP from an Oil Painting background. A number also use Oil Sticks (Bars) sometimes in combination with OP.

The forum (as well as Oil Pastel Society) is aimed at elevating the awareness of artists to the utility of OP as a serious art medium and serving as a place of learning and dialog about methods, materials, techniques, ideas, etc.

I hope you don't find this communication overly presumptuous for someone that is really fairly new and lacks formal training (although I am very well read with regard to history, media, materials, pigments, supports, techniques, etc.). Booksmart, but only now with retirment do I have the time to actually "push enough paint around to begin to learn how to actually make art. I have attached a couple of images of some of my "work", as crude as it is so you can see you aren't dealing with an expert. Thank you so very much for taking time out to respond to me.

His quick response was as follows:

Hi William,
Happy to hear from you. You can place my name and the sites where ever you like. I ask that you advise people to first go to the site that you requested the catalog from and have them request the catalog there (because i can monitor the requests that way).
Both the pigmentsplus site and the tdparts site are going to be hosting allot of free info and i will be answering questions and making some video responses to questions. But i am doing it alone so it takes time. People who get the catalog from my sites will gain access to special areas of info when i get the site setup.

As to varnishing oil pastels: when using the ones designed by Vincente(with linseed oil) they can be varnished after several months with damar or other varnish (i use damar because i make it; it is natural and inexpensive). But yet, these works are generally on paper and therefore should be glazed when framed. That said, if i were working with the standard pastel sticks (mineral oil), i would allow air flow around the piece, wait several months and attempt to varnish it (perhaps atomize the varnish - a fine, light spray; perhaps two light coats covering the entire surface). Possibly i would first prepare the paper by varnishing it with two light coats of damar; then work on the image and when i have finally waited the appropriate time, i would mount it and float it in a frame without glass - BUT, that is a dangerous way to display works on paper! Make sure your people understand that it is not the suggested way to do things.....but i have the right to make the attempt, if i so chose - i merely do the best i can to protect the image and the support(paper) before displaying.
Artists who would like to use damar can get an interesting solvent to dissolve the crystals in to make varnish - orangine (Vinc has it and i am testing it in the Montreal studio....so far it is great and the fumes are not toxic like turps) - i will make a video on the subject soon for the site. So stay in touch and have people get the catalog from www.pigmentsplus.com (http://www.pigmentsplus.com/) or www.tdparts.com (http://www.tdparts.com/) or http://www.artistoilpaint.tdparts.com/ (http://www.artistoilpaint.tdparts.com/) they can email me - as you did - and if i can help, i will (the people at Kama do not always have the time to and i learn what subjects people need help with; perhaps even make videos about the subjects for the web.
One thing you will find with my approach: i attempt to make it down to earth and less 'technical' - this stuff is not rocket science it is mainly 'down on the farm' science when you stay with the more natural mediums.

That should do it for now - stay in touch!
p.s. i like your Starry Night painting!

{Okay, so left in his compliment about my Van Gogh! Gimme a break, my self image needs all the boosting it can get. Ergo, please forgive me indulging myself that wee bit!http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/images/smilies/redface.gif }

Thus you now have the complete story of my late night correspondence. I apologize if this is long and as I said I really wasn't sure where to put it and what to cut out so I hope this is useful information and clears up the relationship between the French site and Canda/US site. He was very obliging and seems open to inquiries of any kind. He does desire people request the catalog through the site so he can control the release of the Toll free number and his private email address. I have deleted those for that reason.

Let me know what you think. Hope this is informative.

If I hear from John Elliot re the Picasso question I will Post his reponse in that thread.
BTW--24 below 0 outside today!!!! Anyone want to come visit???

http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/images/smilies/musicalnotes.gif http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/images/smilies/heart.gif http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/images/smilies/musicalnotes.gif

02-21-2008, 03:15 PM
Bill, thank you so much for taking the time to do this. All the great information is appreciated.

I would like to make a little clarification. Kama Pigments is in Montreal, Canada and their site is bilingual. The Permanent Pigments site is in the United States. It is probably best for Canadian customers to order from the Kama Pigments site rather than the Permanent Pigments to avoid border customs charges as well as higher shipping charges.

I've just placed another order with Kama Pigments for the remaining colours of the Extra-greasies as well as some oil painting supplies.


02-21-2008, 04:05 PM
Thanks for the clarification. I thought I had seen a .fr on the site when I first saw it, but probably just assumed because it came up first in French it was a French site. Ironic assumption considering I am of French descent via my Father who was born in southern Louisiana; a direct descendent of the Acadians driven out of Nova Scotia by the British.

After looking at the sites and the type of information they were putting out I had the feeling they would be responsive to inquiries and since WC and the OP forum have turned me into a fearless, but still faceless, internet gadfly I figured why not ask what the story was and share it. I started to try and summarize but decided that posting the entire correspondence would be better than trying to pick out what was important. it seemed that so many people were interested in the site and its products that it was worth trying to get a better handle on what was happening. Terrance seems most willing to try and assist anyone if he can as long as they request the catalog so he can have a record of who has expressed interest and that is why I deleted the phone and email info. It seemed a reasonable thing to me.

While I was at it, I also emailed a message to John Elliot asking about the Picasso mystery and sent and inquiry about the same to the Reference Library at the Art Institute of Chicago and will post any information, if any, I get back in that thread.

I'm glad you found the info useful and enjoyed digging a little deeper. Hope you have your seascape under control!

:wave: :music: :heart: :music:

02-25-2008, 02:49 PM
Hmmm. I can barely keep up with all of you.

Later this week I was planning on purchasing a few dozen varieties of colours of Sennelier Grande, at a local art stores annual 20% off everything in store event. This was to supplement the purchase I made last year at this time of the 36-stick box set also in the large format. Hey, itís difficult enough to make money at art so itís always smart to stock up during the sales.

Iím working a little larger now and so the Grande size come in handy and they are so much more economical than getting the regular size sticks. I even find that one can often scrape the sticks with a pallet knife to get at more detailed renderings when required.

These Extra-greasy sound like an even better deal but at least I still have a couple of days to think about which to choose.

Thanks all for this great thread!


Pat Isaac
02-25-2008, 04:18 PM
On sale is the best way to go. I received a tip from Terrance at Pigments Plus regarding their extra greasy OPs. They are made with linseed oil so they dry like an oil painting and may be framed without glass as long as they are on board. This was his reply:
"Yes the pastels will dry (they are formulated with linseed oil); the same oil that is used in Kama's oil paints. As to framing without glass, it is never recommended for works on paper. BUT, that said, artists do take liberties - more and more today.
It should be understood that framing works-on-paper beneath glass is to protect the paper mainly. Paper is very fragile; when it gathers dust and soot, it is very difficult to clean. Also, paper is effected by humidity. Glazing the works gives them a barrier from unwanted elements. Yet, if an artist wanted to mount a work and float it in an open frame they have the right to do so. If I were going to do this I would probably first treat the paper with 1-2 thin coats of Damar Varnish (enough to 'seal' the paper but not render the paper shiny). I make several types of varnish with Damar and find it very helpful in the studio.( i will be making several videos about it soon)
So, the pastels will dry but for safety, you might recommend to your people to continue glazing their OP's.
Please write anytime! And if possible have people request catalogs from pigmentsplus or tdparts > www.tdparts.com .

This was his suggestion for Sennelier OPs without glass on board.
"I thought of something else that you can do: Since you are working on panel and you are covering the entire panel with your OP's and you do not want to put them under glass, you can try heating the image - a little; perhaps with a hairdryer but not with the fan pushing the heat hard. What will happen is this: The bee's wax in the formula will react with the heat and rise to the surface. This will create a barrier; you will still have to wait for the oil to dry but the wax will be an added protection. Must be done softly not to disturb the strokes or melt too much of the wax.
That technique is used in oil painting when you wish to put an expressive stroke over or touching a stroke that is still wet. By thinking in advance a small quantity of wax can be added to the paint; then the stroke is heated slightly and the second stroke is then applied. The bottom stroke has a thin wax barrier that isolates & acts to resist the second stroke. It can not be played with beyond that, so the second stroke need be a prima-stroke.
( a small quantity of wax paste incorporated into an oil medium can add several positive qualities to the paint since the wax is inert and only subject to temperature. It remains wax for thousands of years.)
Hope this is interesting to you."

I might try that with a sample to see what happens....scary...
In any event the 2 should not be mixed unless you put the greasy ones down first, let them dry and then add regular OPs. A lot to think about.
I probably would do the painting with one or the other.


02-25-2008, 05:44 PM
Pat, I agree with you. I would not offer for sale an oil pastel done with Senneliers framed without glass. Since my oil pastels look like my oil paintings framing with glass is a good way to differentiate them. In my experience the framing with glass has not been an issue and has not affected sales.

Leo, I went to your website and really like your paintings. I make my living from the sale of my paintings so I know how great it is to find high quality materials at good prices.

Considering your style of painting as well as your experience, it is definitely worth your while to try the Kama Extra-greasies. Keep in mind that they are somewhere in between oil pastels and oil sticks and are more suited to the experienced painter than the hobby painter as the colours are pigment colours rather than pre-mixed like the Senneliers. I work mostly in oils so, like me, you are probably used to the smell of linseed oil. They would probably be more suitable for your outdoor painting while the Senneliers would probably be better for smaller more detailed studio work.

Since you are also in Canada it's best to order from the Kama Pigments site in Montreal. The shipping is cheaper and faster. They should also be available at Tern Art Supplies on Queen St. West in Toronto.

Hope this helps...


p.s. Also check out their oil paints and, perhaps, try one or two of the oil sticks.

Pat Isaac
02-25-2008, 05:50 PM
I am still waiting for my catalog and hope it comes tomorrow. I really want to order some of these oil pastels. It will be an interesting try. I like the fact that they are so pigmented and that is the way my R&F pigment sticks are.


02-25-2008, 07:28 PM
Thanks Pat for passing on all that information on Extra-greasy pastels. Right now Iím mostly using Cansons Canva-Paper as a base for oil pastels and suspect that it is as good as board in terms of itís resistant to tearing etc. Itís a coated textured paper, designed for oil and acrylic paints and has just the right amount of ďslip-feelĒ to take and work OP very nicely. I must admit that Iíve not yet tried the sanded paper which everyone seems to like but this a good economical choice nonetheless.

Wendell thanks also for the comments about my paintings. Actually, it was just yesterday that I probed to see if you had a website but didnt' notice any posted - do you happen to have one? I gave Tern's Art Supplies a call soon after reading your post but must have just missed them after their closing time:envy: . Anyway, my work is just a few km from them, so I'll pop into their store tomorrow and see what they have available. Internet shopping is great but nothing beats the touch and feel of a product at the store level before buying.

Thanks again and btw I love the smell of linseed oil:music: .


Pat Isaac
02-25-2008, 07:35 PM
I love that smell also. Always reminds me of the halls and rooms in my painting area at school.


02-25-2008, 09:46 PM
Leo, I just sent you a PM with websites where you can see my paintings. For paintings posted on Wet Canvas just click on my username and they are in the threads that I started.


02-26-2008, 06:21 PM
I am still waiting for my catalog and hope it comes tomorrow. I really want to order some of these oil pastels. It will be an interesting try. I like the fact that they are so pigmented and that is the way my R&F pigment sticks are.


I ordered the Extra Greasy Pastels online from the Kama site before leaving for Isla Mujeras and while I don't remember the exact amount, the shipping on an order of about $90 was about 13, I think. You can do an online order at Kama, checkout and calculate shipping and see what it is going to be and if it is too much just don't submit the transaction and wait for your catalog. Terrance told me that the downloable pdf catalog at the Kama site is the same catalog. I'm not sure if all the products aren't processed through the Kama site anyway. Perhaps I'm wrong. Wendell probably knows more about this. I guess I don't fully understand the shipping thing ordering Kama vs. Pigments Plus. Terrance's studio is in Montreal if I understood him correctly, perhaps Pigments Plus is just a US web presence. It sounded like Terrance was dealing with primarily development of the sites (and there is a third site that is devoted to art critiquing and instructional materials; I'm unclear on the ties among them. It seems to me they are all part of the same larger operation. Does this make any sense, Pat or Wendell?


Pat Isaac
02-26-2008, 06:42 PM
No catalog yet. so maybe I will just go and download it from Kama as I would really like to get these OPs.
Thanks, I'll check it out again.


02-26-2008, 08:44 PM
Bill and Pat, since downtown Montreal is only about thirty miles from the American border, a lot of people who work in Montreal live in an area of New York State around Lake Champlain and the Adirondacks. It's beautiful there and nothing to travel back and forth to work. Since they don't have set working hours several artists I've worked with did this. This could be the case with Mr. di Pietro. I think he also has a studio in New York State. It is usually cheaper, faster and easier to carry the goods across the border and mail it in the country to which it is destined. Generally there is no duty or taxes on goods produced in either country.

I lived in Montreal for almost thirty years and went back and forth across the border many times.


02-27-2008, 01:28 AM
Thanks for the explanation, Wendell. I checked the order and it was 13 dollers shipping and handling. I don't recall if there were taxes, but if so they must have been fairly small since it didn't seem to pop out to me when I made the order.


02-29-2008, 12:12 PM
Today, I received my second order from Kama Pigments with the remaining colours of the extra-greasy oil pastels as well as some more oil paints and a yard of thick tightly woven Belgian linen. Packed with the order was the catalogue which had a few items that I don't remember seeing on the website. I'm now sitting with a box-cutter knife carving off the dried film. The extra-greasies are definitely for the artist who doesn't mind getting his fingers dirty in the cause of art.


Pat Isaac
02-29-2008, 03:09 PM
Orders of art materials are always so exciting to get. I am going to order from the site as I haven't received the catalog yet. Those extra greasys sound like the pigment sticks I use. Very messy.


02-29-2008, 03:49 PM
Pat, I am very intrigued by the pigment sticks and plan to order a couple to try when I place my next order with Dick Blick. The costs of shipping etc. to Canada makes a small order very expensive. I have some Shiva Oilstiks from the late seventies as well as some W&N Oilbars from the nineties. The Oilstiks don't have a great pigment load and are a bit clumsy to use. The Oilbars are very oily and very shiny. The one Kama Oil Stick that I have is oily and less shiny but has a good pigment load. It sounds like the R&F pigment sticks are the best. I will be interested in hearing your opinion in comparing the pigment load of the extra-greasies to the pigment sticks. How do the R&F pigment sticks compare to the Shivas and the Oilbars?

At two to three dollars each the Kama oil sticks seem like such a great buy that I'm thinking of ordering some but wondering if I shouldn't wait to get the more expensive pigment sticks.


Pat Isaac
02-29-2008, 04:26 PM
I have used Shiva paintsticks and oil bars and by far my preference is the R&F pigment sticks. They have an exceptional pigment load, gorgeous colors and are very soft and creamy. Literally almost like oil paint in a stick. I use them for large loose work and then when they dry add OPs for detail. They do form a skin which comes off if you just rub the stick across a piece of paper or wipe it with a paper towel. They are expensive and took me awhile to accumulate a workable number. Can't really advise you as I don't know what the Kamas are like.


02-29-2008, 05:42 PM
Thank you, Pat. They sound like something I would like. I'd like to do some large landscapes with loosely done skies. The skies could be done with pigment or oil sticks and the land portion with oil paint or oil pastels. It seems as if they would be good for seascapes and water as well.

As you might have guessed I have a bit of an addiction to art supplies but, at least in my case, they are tax deductible.


02-29-2008, 10:15 PM
Wendell: I'm not certain, but I seem to recall that Kama pigments has a Canadian site as well. Or maybe the company itself is Canadian, and offers a U.S. site for us Yankees. At any rate, you might want to check into it, as if I'm correct, it could reduce your shipping costs significantly.

02-29-2008, 10:47 PM
Thank you, Annie, but actually I order from the Canadian site www.kamapigment.com . The U.S. site is www.pigmentsplus.com . The Canadian site is located in Montreal while the American site is located in New York State. By the way, Montreal is only about thirty miles from the American border of New York State.


02-29-2008, 11:27 PM
Wendell, Impatient as I am I ordered a full set of the EGP's from the Kama site online. There is no online srore with the U.S. site. You understand the implications much better than anyone else, it seems. I paid via credit card and the additional charges (shipping as far as I was ab le to determine) came to $13 for an order over $80. I am still stuck in paradise but I have received emails that the order has been processed. I am hoping they await my return Sunday night. Would there be charges other than those that showed up on the invoiice?? I know that the catalog on Kama's site is the same as that for Pigments Plus as Terrance said it was.

Folks anxious to see the catalog in the US can simply download a PDF from the Kama site. When they request a catalog from the Pigments Plus they get a toll free (US and Canadian) that I assume they can order through. This might be the best way rather than waiting for the Pigments Plus catalog to arrive. I get a sense that Terrance's Pigment Plus site is mainly for developing promotianal materials and product development and demonstrations.

As soon as I get the order I will post what the total charges were ordering from Kama's online catlog from the U.S.

I hope you and/or Pat will grace us with some demonstrations of the use of Oil Bars (Sticks), etc. I am placing the EGP's (from their description, as most likely a firmer but drying oil stick.

This may sound like a dumb question, but what is the reason for making traditionall OP's from Mineral Oils rather than siccative oils??

Perhaps it would be interesting to take the components of the OP binder (wax, oil, ????) and make sticks without pigment to evaluate the textural characteristics and range that can b e accomplished with various binder formulae before adding pigments. Does this make any sense to do so?

Apprecciate your informed opinion.

Bill:music: :heart: :music:

03-01-2008, 12:31 AM
Bill, I'm sorry but I didn't realize that you can't directly order from the U.S. site. However if you go to the home page of Pigments Plus there is a photo under the caption "Some products and prices that will surprise you". Click on the photo or the word "more" under the photo and a catalogue will come up. You probably already have done this. Then one could order using the toll free number that Terrance emails. Other than that I really have no idea why their web sites are so confusing and complicated. I think you're right about Terrance being more of the idea man and his partner in Montreal being the production man.

Enjoy your last days in paradise before you get back to this never ending winter.

Right now I am working on ten large oil paintings to start off the summer season (the big selling season here). It is impractical for me to do large pastels mainly because they have to be framed with glass and a lot of my works get shipped. They also fetch a better price. Then hopefully I will start doing a lot of oil pastels and soft pastels. I usually work in a variation of a production line. I know this is not the "romantic" notion that people have of artists but for most working artists it is the reality.

I don't know the real reason for using mineral oil but I can think of several possible reasons:

>The non-drying pastels would have a much longer shelf life and can be stored much longer. This would certainly benefit the large manufacturers.

>The non-drying would be much easier to clean up in a school situation.

>The non-drying would be better for illustrators whose work is not meant to be permanent.

>The non-drying are better for ordinary paper whereas the drying need coated paper.

>The drying oils form a film which has to be removed and that can be aggravating.

>It's easier to make softer oil pastels with non-drying oil.

Can you think of any more reasons?

Bill, with both oil pastels and oil sticks you can get blending sticks which don't contain pigment. They may have some kind of inert colourless filler though. It would be interesting to try various formulations though.

Have a good trip back....


03-01-2008, 01:01 AM
Sorry, Bill, but I didn't answer your question. I don't think there would be extra charges but then I don't know about shipping to the U.S.. When my paintings are shipped to the U.S. I haven't heard of extra charges. When I order from the U.S. and the item is sent through the post office sometimes there is a five dollar customs fee plus the Canadian sales tax of five percent.


03-01-2008, 01:33 AM
Wendell--I learned long ago in academia, much like art, that idealism must yield to practicality. I have some times been accused of not being an "enviromenatist" because I think you have to view man as an integral part of the natural system and not somehow removed and operating according to different rules. In seminars with students no matter what biological topic we discussed one could inevitably see that political, economic, and pragmatic considerations often have more infuluence on policy than the biology of a particular system. No, not romantic, but my wife if really a musician at heart. She works as a systems programmer to make it possible to indulge her artistic drive. Artitists that are dependent on selling paintings for a living can't totally disregard the "market place". However, my guess is it is the "Production system" that provides the resources to paint that romantic work that is driven by passion and not by the pocketbook. You know, I learned something very profound for me in the forarys into the Picasso thread and digging around. I had always looked at Picasso's "famous works" and while I respected him and hist talent, I was not particularly attracted emotionally by what I viewed his "typical work was". As I found sites with large numbers of his works that spanned his career, I found that there many things he did that did not conform to my sterotypical perception of his "style". He worked in all sorts of media and produced many almost "traditional" works that most people don't see. I wonder if much of his more avant garde work could have been driven by what you are talking about. The need to produce salable art that filled the current popular niche of the times?

As for the OP question, I think you hit the nail on the head with many of your reasons that seem to revolve around OP's early development as a medium not for artists as much as it was for non-artists. I think this is why Crayola which produces Portfolios which have an excellent set of working characteristis have never developed an artist's line. Perhaps I'm naive, but it would seem simple enough take the binder they have developed and use artist grade pigments and concentrations (perhaps with some tweaking of the binder). My understanding is that binders are all pretty much variations on the same basic ingredients. The pigment component seems, as I understand it, to be the real difference. Why then does Crayola not produce such a line? My guess is that it simply isn't worth their time, economically, because the target market they produce for does not need such a product and investing resources in a comparatively small market relative to what they have would simply be a distraction.

Terrance said something in his email to me that I have been mulling over. He recited the basice list of ingredients in an OP binder, includiding mineral oil. He then said Kama's were made with linseed oil which was more "PROFESSIONAL" (my emphasis). Could he be saying that artist grade OP's should be made with siccative oils?? You know more about the various oils used in oil paints. Is there any reason why a stiffer binder could not be produced with siccative oils rather than mineral oil? I think the skin issue and shelf life issues are relatively minor (dealing with the skin cannot be anymore annoying than fussing with various solvents and media, could it? And the shelf life issue could be dealt with using the proper packaging and storage.

I think you hit the major reasons and the only one that seems significant to me would be the ability to produce a firmer stick. Alll the other reasons relate to convenience, use for non archival work and use in educational situations where the need for profeffional grade materials again would not be necessary or economical and perhaps compromise envrionmental safety issues in dealing with students.

My question, for lack of experience, is why would it be harder to alter the working characteristics of the binder with siccative oils? Could not this be accomplished by adjusting the amount and/or types of wax to oil ratios? Or is there some inherrent property of the siccative oils that make this more difficult?

Wendell, thanks for being such a wellspring of information and insight. I know how busy you must be and I appreciate your insights and knowledge.

Many thanks.

:music: :heart: :music:

03-01-2008, 01:54 AM
Sorry, Bill, but I didn't answer your question. I don't think there would be extra charges but then I don't know about shipping to the U.S.. When my paintings are shipped to the U.S. I haven't heard of extra charges. When I order from the U.S. and the item is sent through the post office sometimes there is a five dollar customs fee plus the Canadian sales tax of five percent.


Thanks. It seems then, that it may be more a problem of extra cost ordering from your end from the US than the other way around. As I said, the invoice indicated $13 shipping on an $80 + order which didn't seem particularly outlandish to me. I'll let you know when I get home and they arrive.

BTW, Wendell, I have though of you often here on Isla Mujeres as the Island has many places with crashing surf, beautiful seascapes, boats, and all the thhings that seem to be staples of your work I've seen at the links you sent me (Including beautiful sunsets). I hope to post some of the beeter shots in the ref library after I get home. Just a couple attached to share the beauty with you.

Pat Isaac
03-01-2008, 04:59 PM
I ordered my extra greasies today. I couldn't wait any longer. There was no extra tax, just shipping charges. I should have done this sooner. I only had 6.50 on a $60 order which seemed just fine.
One issue with the mineral oil OPs and the linseed oil OPs might be that the latter do dry just like the oil sticks and one reason I like the others is that even after a week I can go back and work into them. I know I couldn't do that with the others, at least I couldn't do it with my oil sticks. I always had to apply more pigment all over.
Bill, many of the "famous artists" all have a great deal of notable work before their final style emerged. Some of Picasso's print series are really outstanding.


03-01-2008, 11:17 PM
Pat--Same experience. The shipping was not unreasonable. Your point is one I had not considered. However, why could you not rework areas by painting over the "dried" oil. I know that it takes some amount of time for "oils: to "dry"; is it that the Oil Sticks dry so much faster?

Could your reason for liking the triditional OP be a clue to why Picasso wanted them and what he wanted them for? Could it be he envisioned them as a developmental tool that would allow him to rework preliminary studies.

I cannot recall where I saw it, but I ran into a description of Picasso and some work he was doing with lithograph after the war. (I am not formailiar with lithograph so this may make sense to others more than I). the narrator describe what apparantly was an unusual style of workiing by using "crayon" on the prepared stone, making a run of several copies, then without cleaning the stone (apparently usually necessary) he described Picasso feverishly rewoarking (or as he interpreted it) serially modifying the crayon image a number of times over, each followed by a pressing of several prints, more reworking, etc. The narrator, awed by this, related that it was almost as if there was a master plan and that each step transformed and expanded the previous application.

I have no idea what the "crayons" used were, but this made me think that perhaps, like you, he wanted something that could b e transformed over an extended period of developing a work.

I'm not sure if this makes any sense or not??

Yes, I guess I always knew artists went through various phases, I guess it just struck me how I had sterotyped Picasso by his "famous works" and never really thought about his development.. Claude Monet seems to me to be another example where his early works, while never seeming "traditional" seem much more structured more realistic than hist later works.

I suppose what I was trying to convey was that it seems really irrelevant whether we came to a definitive answer to the question posed because the search for the answer in itself (at least to me) proved educational and I learned much in the process of trying to answer the still unanswered question. Even in our failures we must be open to the fact that there are still lessons trhay may be learned if we are open to them.

:music: :heart: :music:

03-01-2008, 11:55 PM
Bill, these are lovely photos and thanks for posting them. Before the snowstorm today I looked at the beach here and it was all gray with snow and broken ice floes. From where I live it's less than a five minute walk to the beach and the fishermens' wharves. As a biologist you'd be interested in knowing that the largest business in my village is a research lab for aqua health. They chose this location for the salt water wells.

When I paint it's not really a production line as in a factory. When I get bogged down with one painting, it gets set aside and I go to another. Some days I'm in the mood to work on a big sky while other days I'll work on detailed things like boats and buildings. Since I work with glazes sometimes the work has to dry a bit.

In experimenting keep in mind the importance of the support and binder. While the pigments ensure the integrity of the colours, the binder and support ensure the painting's survival. It would be interesting to try mixing an oil pastel with an oil stick and see what the result would give.

Bill, I think you will find the extra-greasies both challenging and frustrating. There are no grays to reach for so most colours have to be mixed on the support.

Pat, that was a good point about being able to go back and work on the oil pastel.

By the way, the raw umber dried first in about a week. After over two weeks the cadmium reds are still not dry but seem to be setting up a bit.


Pat Isaac
03-02-2008, 10:48 AM
I have used OPs over dried pigment sticks, but that isn't quite the same as mixing them together.
I always liked oil painting because I could rework areas that I didn't like and the paint wasn't dry and I like that about OPs.
It was Picasso's lithographs that I saw and they were really interesting and full of energetic drawing. That was one of my favorite subjects in art school. I spent hours in the lithography room. We used what they called then a lithograph pencil and it was like a greasy crayon, but in pencil form. There's that drawing thing again, a reason why I liked this printing process. We did clean the stones after every printing session, but I don't see why they couldn't be reworked.
Thanks, Wendell for the update on the EG pastels.


03-03-2008, 06:58 PM
Wendell-I'm still very much in discovery and information collection mode. I want to learn as much as possbile before I start mixing things with no plan or strategy in mind. I wrestling with what Pat and you have talked about regarding the drying/non-drying aspects of the media. I understand Pat's appreciation of being able to go back and "work into" a painting, but she brings up a good point that the oil medium, while it does "dry" via oxidative processes, this can take some time as I understand it. Various oils (siccative) have different charactieristics in terms of drying time, if I understand correctly. Therefore, could not an "OP" created using siccative oils be reworkable for some period of time but still "harden" as you have described older oil works?

One thing that I wanted to toss out and get opinions on regards something I've seen in a couple of places regarding some OP's (Erengi according to the blurb in Jerry's catalog) can be "softened" or "dissolved" in linseed oil (siccative??). Now, what happens when you use linseed oil to work an OP? Would that cause it to dry such as an Oil Painting???? What siccative oils might be slow drying enough to theoretically produce an OP stick that would remain workable for a period of time but ultimately oxidize and harden like your Oil Paintings.

I don't know if I'm making sense. There's so much whirling around in my head and I'm trying to figure out not just the "how to", but the "why" of the composition of these media. Why would Sennelier use a non-siccative oil in the first place if his background was in making oil paints?? Where did the idea for a mineral oil base come from? Was this perhaps one of the criteria that Picasso specified, so that he could use these as a developmental medium (speculation, I know), that he could rework for extended periods until he had what he wanted in terms of composition?

The more I think about this thread (and the Picasso one) the more questions I come up with and the fewer answers I seem to have for them. I know much of that is due to lack of experience, but I can't get this problem out of the back of my mind. It keeps calling out to me that there must be a reason the mineral oil formula was created. Wendell, is there another "oily" medium that uses a non-siccative oil base such as OP??? If not, then what was the genesis of the concept??

I know this is a scramble of questions and thinking out loud, but there is something about this that, as a scientist, makes me think there has to be some rationale behind all this and I'm just not seeing it. Maybe somebody else does???


Thanks to you and Pat for sharing so much of your expertise. For some reason this question just keeps eating at me, like I'm not seeing something that is right in front of my nose.


03-03-2008, 11:49 PM
Bill, I think we should think more of the drying time of oils rather than siccative versus non-siccative. The MSDS for Sennelier Oil Pastels indicates a base of safflower oil which can be a very, very slow or non-drying oil. Annie explained this in the thread on making oil pastels from oil paints. Certain safflower oils can be faster drying as some of my oil paints (W&N whites and light colours) have a base of safflower oil. Other drying oils are poppyseed, walnut and linseed oil. In "The Pastel Book" Bill Creevy writes on page 22:

"Oil pastels eventually dry to a hard finish the way paint does. This drying process may take many years to complete, but it does eventually happen. Because of this oil pastels do not have an infinite shelf life as soft pastels do. (The oil pastels that I still have from years ago are not as soft and flexible as the ones I bought last week.)"

Frankly, I can't attest to the accuracy of this. "The Painter's Handbook" by Mark David Gottsegen has lots of information on different oils and binders.

Sennelier makes their own brand of paint sticks with drying oil. I guess they figured that would fill the need for a drying oil pastel.

I already tried working with pastels and linseed oil as well as alkyd based Liquin. It works if you lightly mix a bit of lightly applied oil pastel. When I applied the oil on top of thick oil pastel it remained a sticky mess after a few weeks. The Liquin dried on top of the oil pastel but the oil pastel stayed very soft underneath - not a good idea! Surprisingly the whole experiment worked best with soft pastels.

Oil pastels and soft pastels are both non-drying media and I like using both of them. I also like all the oil-based drying media. Only after deciding on the subject of the painting do I decide on the appropriate medium and size for that subject. It's intuitive and comes from experience mostly.

The subject and how one expresses it creatively and imaginatively is the prime consideration. The medium and size are only secondary. Just think of the best paintings you've seen. You look at the painting first and only later do you check the medium or size.

Another good reference book for materials, framing and conservation is the "New Artist's Handbook" by Ray Smith.


03-04-2008, 01:12 AM
Hi Bill,

Wendell brings up a good point about the medium being part of the process and not the end result. Myself I like to experiment with different mediums and learn how they perform and various ways of using them together. I have sometimes used soft pastels in a "couch" of wet acrylic medium, similar to how Wendell experimented with liquin and soft pastel.

I have read several times that one of the spec's for oil pastels that Sennelier designed for is use on any media, without prior preparation. If that is the case the mineral oil seems a better choice than the drying oils. Drying oils used in oil paints have a reputation for degrading the supports they are painted on. The supports for oil painting generally are prepared with some kind of barrier layer to prevent the drying oils from reaching them, gesso of some kind. So if the oil pastel had a drying oil in it, a gesso should be used on the surface prior to painting. Oil paint sticks are exactly that, pigment with wax and drying oils vs oil pastels with non-drying oils. That's really a key difference between them.

Some linseed oils also tend to yellow after a while, that is why they sometimes use safflower or walnut oil which don't yellow in theory. Then of course there is the famous trick of linseed oil soaked rags spontaneously combusting! I have never heard of a case of an oil painting bursting into flames but in theory it could happen in the right conditions. The rags are just fabric soaked in drying oil, and a canvas with no gesso is basically the same thing. But people don't ususally wad their oil paintings up in balls and throw them in a can or box to conentrate the heat buildup. So no fires that I know. Whew! Wouldn't that make oil painting exciting!

Pat Isaac
03-04-2008, 09:14 AM
I too agree with the medium being part of the process. Lately I seem to only work in OPs, but I often have chosen another medium as the subject seems to warrant it.
I did try using linseed oil to blend the OPs, but didn't like the result at all. Probably because it really slowed the process of the application of the OPs. I didn't like the liquin either, sticky like Wendell says.
I have also tried the Sennelier paint sticks, but always come back to the R&Fs, as they are much softer and more paint like.


03-04-2008, 03:02 PM
Have any of you tried Dorland's Wax Medium. It comes in a jar and is about the consistency of cold cream. The label says:

"Translucent compound of waxes and resin to be mixed with oil paint, powdered pigments, powdered metals, colored sands, dyes and other compatible materials. Excellent for encaustic painting, hot or cold wax painting and mixed media, and as a protective coating for paintings, wood, plastic, metal objects or photos. Unexcelled as a protective and permanent sealing medium. Resists cracking and dries more quickly than oil paints used by themselves."

I applied a thin layer of this to some sealed, sanded paper. First I tried thoroughly working soft pastel into it and then blending. It looked like oil pastel and blended well. Then I was able to do some nice drawing on top of that with a soft pastel pencil. You have to be careful that it doesn't absorb into the stick or pencil. Then I tried working some Holbein oil pastel into it and was able to blend a nice translucent effect. Finally I tried some of the Kama extra-greasies and it worked very well. Make sure you clean the ends of the sticks after. I don't think it's a good idea to use the wax medium on top of the oil pastels and would not guarantee the longevity of any of this.

I found a ten year oil unfinished Holbein oil pastel painting in my studio. The surface was watercolour paper primed with Golden acrylic ground for pastels. Most of it was dry and, on only a part of it, did the colour come off on my fingers when I rubbed it.

Paul, I think anyone who paints with linseed oil on raw canvas deserves to have problems. If I have any rags from cleaning up linseed oil or oil paints, I put them in an open metal bucket outside away from the house. Only after a few weeks when thoroughly dry do I put them in the garbage.


03-04-2008, 03:26 PM
Wendell, Paul, Pat-

Thanks for being so informative and patient with what I know must be questions about things that seem obvious to experienced artists. It is much like being a teacher where after years you sometimes forget the things that seem obvious to the teacher may be mystifiying to the student. It is very strange, now, being the student again after so many years and gratifying to have such patient and gracious teachers!!!!

I guess I'm trying to sort out the discussions of how to create an OP painting that does not need glazing somewhat like an oil painting. Does the characteristics of the medium and its appearance "trump" worry about whether you need extra protection. (I.e., is what you are saying is "It would be nice not to have to put OP under glass, but the effect I get with the OP is what I want and the protection problem is secondary to that."?

If you were going to design an OP that gave you the same results as those you currently use and are happy with, what are the characteristics that OP would have (including those you might like if it were possible)?

I hope I'm not becoming a pest. I really get into thinking about these problems from a non-artist as well as fetal artist perspective. These discussions are, IMHO, fascinating and I appreciate your answers no matter how brief, because I know the sacrifice of time it requires.


Bill:music: :heart: :heart: :music: :wave:

Pat Isaac
03-04-2008, 03:57 PM
Wendell, I have used Dorland's Wax Medium but only in conjunction with batik. I used it with my students for a unit on batik design. Sounds like an interesting experiment.
I am not unhappy with the OPS the way they are. I guess it is a question of cost. It costs quite a bit more to frame under glass, but if the OP were on paper that is the only way I would do it. Now that I am working on board and not having to cut mats, it is much better and cheaper, because the frame size is smaller.


03-04-2008, 06:53 PM
Bill, I've done paintings in watercolour, gouache, acrylic, oil, soft pastel and oil pastel. The works on paper got framed with glass while the works on canvas got framed without glass. There has been no problem either way. I like to think that the buyers purchase paintings that they like. Once my paintings are consigned I have no control over how they are handled. The presence of glass indicates that the unprotected painting is vulnerable to damage. What would my liability be if an oil pastel without glass were sold and later damaged? If it scratched easily and the colour rubbed off would I have to refund the money paid including the gallery commission? I think the answer would probably be yes.

However, if you want to frame an oil pastel without glass for your own home, you're perfectly free to do so. You have control over how it is handled.

I'm quite happy with my oil pastels the way they are framed with glass. The only suggestion from the gallery owner did not concern the glass. She suggested that I raise the prices.

As for the "perfect" medium, I'm waiting to find the time to do some works with the Kama extra-greasies. I'd also like to try the R&F pigment sticks.

Pat, so far I've found that the Dorland's Wax Medium to be the most compatible with oil pastels and sticks. If you want a mixing medium it's by far the easiest to work with. I believe that Gamblin also makes a cold wax medium.


Pat Isaac
03-04-2008, 07:12 PM
I do believe that Gamblin does make one. At this time I am not in need of a mixing medium, but I'll keep that in mind. I also frame all my OPs under glass, even the ones done with pigment sticks, but they were on paper.


03-04-2008, 07:45 PM
Hi Wendell,

I have used the Gamblin cold wax medium for some experiments mostly. I was mixing it with pigments and making wax paint out of it though, not using it with OPs. It seems like it took a couple weeks for it to dry fairly well, which was quite long I thought. At the time I was making my own wax paints and the Gamblin medium was drying much too slowly for my taste. The wax paints I made would dry in 15 minutes or so. Much faster.

Yep, that's a real good idea keeping the linseed rags outside awhile. Some fella around these parts burned his deck down with some linseed rags left out under it a few years ago.

Bill, I remember starting out too, and it really did seem like there was a ton of stuff to learn about art. Actually that's still true, there is a ton of stuff to learn! I made the rounds of most any medium I could get my hands on and tried them out. My first trys with OP were pretty lame, using very cheap hard waxy crayons basically. I couldn't do anything with them. I ended up using them with heat. I put a piece of watercolor paper on a griddle and heated it up to where the OP would just melt when pressed against the paper. Then I could paint with the hardest OP (which I think is what I bought) like it was liquid paint. The hardness was actually an advantage in that situation, because once they cooled off they were set and stable. No smudging etc... I guess when I think about it I have been experimenting with wax painting for years now, using various techniques/mediums. There's definitely lots to learn Bill, lots! The neat thing is you can make art while learning, you don't have to understand every little thing about it to get results. I do think a lot of new artists skip learning about using long lasting materials and supports so their works will last. That's a pretty important thing later on, especially if you want to sell your works. Personnally I think learning about the materials and making your own is half the fun or more. Keep it up!

Hi ya Pat :wave:

03-04-2008, 10:35 PM
Thanks Paul, Wendell and Pat. You are all so informative and kind to help me deepen my understanding of art media. You can get only so much from books and the value of WC is it takes you to the personal experiences that can't be easily expressed in an edited book.

An Paul, I too, have tried about every medium there is and really enjoy learning about different ones. I think that was the genesis of the "what defines and art medium" thread I started because sometimes it seems some people get hung up of boundaries when technology keeps blurring them.

As an aside, I just noticed that my Posts are tending (mostly) to get shorter! Was that a huge collective sigh of relief I heard from the OP forum???:lol:

Later. My wife if tossing me off the computer.

:music: :heart: :music:

Pat Isaac
03-11-2008, 09:44 AM
Just went to the mail and my EGs have arrived.....Did I get mine first, Bill..


03-11-2008, 12:42 PM
Just went to the mail and my EGs have arrived.....Did I get mine first, Bill..


:envy: :envy: :crying: :crying: :p :p
Does that answer your question????

Pat Isaac
03-11-2008, 03:41 PM
Heehee...I took mine to the studio today to play..:evil: :D


03-11-2008, 05:26 PM
Your halo is starting to tilt.:p :angel: :envy:
:music: :heart: :music:

Pat Isaac
03-11-2008, 05:30 PM
What do mean tilt???? I fixed it today.....:lol:


03-12-2008, 10:55 AM
Yes, and if they don't come today I bet it's gonna fall off!

:envy: :envy: :envy:

:music: :heart: :music:

Pat Isaac
03-12-2008, 04:21 PM
No my fault.....:evil: :D:angel:


03-12-2008, 06:37 PM
:envy: :evil: I know it's not your fault, but I need a scapegoat!!!! Maybe I should pick on Wendell since he got his in just days!!!:envy: :envy:

Pat Isaac
03-12-2008, 06:42 PM
Heehee, There you go, let's all pick on Wendell.....:lol: :evil: :D


03-12-2008, 06:54 PM
Wendell's Extra-greasies are now sitting in the freezer. I haven't had time to post much because painting and the business of art got in the way. I had a bit of the flu which didn't help. The twelve big paintings are coming along well with one finished, a couple three-quarters finished and several half finished. I'm rushing to get all the skies done before the fruit flies come around. After the twelve paintings get done I'll be able to relax and do 20 or 30 pastels before fall. Of course every one of them has to sell.


Pat Isaac
03-12-2008, 06:59 PM
Looking forward to the 20 or 30 OPs....fruit flies??? what am I missing here?:confused:


03-12-2008, 07:09 PM
Pat, they don't use as much pesticides on the farms around and we have to compost a lot of the garbage so we seem to get a lot more of those tiny fruit flies. They're harmless but they just love the smell of linseed oil and are attracted to it. They fly right into the wet painting and roll around in the sticky paint. On the landscape you don't notice them but in a pale sky they look like a flock of dead crows.


03-12-2008, 07:29 PM
:mad: So what have you got against dead crows, you EGOP hoarder:crying:
Besides, if it hadn't been for those little fruit flies how would we have ever figured out Genetics.....white mice of the genetics lab. Mush up a little bannana, mix with a little agar, put in little milk bottles with a couple of fruit flies and next thing you know you are up to your ears in fruit flies (especially if you forget to plug the bottle opening with a wad of cotton!!!

Only 12 paintings???? How are you going to eat for the rest of the year (oh yeah, now I remember visiting your gallery sites and realizing it would probably be cheaper to hang you on the wall than one of your paintings). However, I'm just guessing the painting would look better on the wall and certainly wouldn't have a decided streak of sarcasm:evil: :D

Sorry, Wendell, I get cranky when I order something it doiesn't get here the next day. I lack you infinite patience and calm, unperturbable nature. I'm still trying to figure out how long it would take to get them if it didn't say "EXPEDITED", unless that's Canadian for sent by slow pack mule via the Yukon!

Hope you get better. Same advice I gave Annie.....lots of chicken soup. (OTOH, you might try fruit fly soup).

:wave: :wave:

Pat Isaac
03-12-2008, 08:04 PM
Glad you are feeling better, Wendell....interesting about the fruit flies and I know my kids did experiments with them in science class in high school. One of my daughters was enamored with them..drosophila..and had them in jars mating..OTOH, my husband used some of our daughter's fruit shampoo once and joked about having fruit flies attack his hair, well they did...:lol:
Bill, the dogs probably sent them back...couldn't figure out what they were.....


03-12-2008, 08:31 PM
Pat---You got me to displace my frustration on Wendell. Are you trying reverse that decision???? Thanks for the uplifting assessment! Dogs, Dogs??? How did the dogs get involved.

:confused: :confused: :envy:

03-12-2008, 08:38 PM
Bill, once the sled dogs (not mules) got the package to the border they handed it over to the Americans who look after it from that point on. They probably threw it on the big "expedited" pile while they gently looked after the package going to that nice Patricia. Does the USPS still use ponies? If so, that nice pony is trotting to Wisconsin.

Where do you get your little milk bottles, Bill? Ebay? My milkman hasn't had them for years but at least I've still got a milkman. I'm thinking of the health of the lovely little fruit flies when I do the skies now. I don't want them to die a horrible death in ecstasy on one of my skies.


03-12-2008, 11:46 PM
Shoot, mail has gotten slower since the 911 attacks. They take a lot of mail and process it through radiation and sensors to see if it might be hazardous materials. The post office facility right up the street from me is where a postal worker died from anthrax exposure. They shut the whole building down and sealed it (a whole building, and not a small building either) in plastic wrap for a long time while they figured out how to sanitize it. So, yes we still use ponies, but they are only slow because of the extra scanning, inspecting, examining and processing. Have you ever seen how long it takes to coax a pony through an x-ray machine? Otherwise they would be the fastest ponies in any post service in the world. Darn tootin, straight talk too!

03-13-2008, 12:46 AM
I just happen to be watching a tv program, Aftermath: Population Zero, about what might happen if there were suddenly no humans on earth. Depressing. I turned to it to get away from all the depressing political stuff on the news. Then I came here, again hoping to distract myself from politics, and Paul is talking about the anthrax scare!

:lol: I just can't win tonight! But, tempted though I am, I'm staying away from anything political... :-X

How do you like your EGs, Pat? :)

Pat Isaac
03-13-2008, 08:59 AM
I haven't really had a chance to try them yet, Annie but they seem to be a cross between my paint sticks and my OPs. I am going to try a whole painting with them soon.
Bill....that explains it...the pony is lost in the wilderness.:lol:


03-13-2008, 02:58 PM
Not once, but twice the doorbell rang this morning. I nearly broke my neck, tripped over the dog, skidded to the door only to be greeted first by a nice lady from a local church passing out brochures and secondly by a WHITE BOX THAT WAS JUST THE SIZE AND WEIGHT I WAS EXPECTING, EXCITEDLY BEGAN TO RIP IT OPEN.....and realized it was a addressed to my wife and apparently a bunch of stupid (probably not, but I felt that way) books my wife had ordered.:crying: :crying: :crying: :confused: :confused: :confused: :envy: :envy: :envy:



:music: :music: :music: :music: :music:
(Violins supplied courtesy of Pat)

Pat Isaac
03-13-2008, 03:04 PM
:lol: :lol: :lol: the dogs are lost...I told you that. Maybe you should send out the St. Bernard.
:music: :music: :music: playing the interlude between acts..


03-13-2008, 11:07 PM
Bill, you've just got to convince yourself that you don't want them. You don't need them! They're probably no good anyway! You've probably got about five hundred already - don't need more! You don't have room for them anyway! They'll just clutter up the place! It'll be too much trouble to assort, classify, cross-reference and catalogue them both digitally and electronically! You're not going to waste any more time waiting for them - better to paint!

Once you convince yourself of all this they'll come right away. It works for me every time!


03-14-2008, 03:53 AM
Wenell, Pat -- You are both right. Boy does that burn me up!

ACT II of (fill in number sometime in the future)
Return of the (Fruit) Fly








:crying: :crying: :crying: :crying:
:music: :music: :music: :music:

Pat Isaac
03-14-2008, 02:02 PM
The violins are playing the next interlude...:music: :music: :music:
Mine did come in the regular mail.....Maybe the dog team transferred them to the stagecoach....now lost in the wild west....:lol: