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Fabulous
09-14-2009, 04:05 AM
Hi all.

I find many Artisan paints just too thick.

Water works for lean mixtures, but for fatter mixtures I have bought Artisan stand oil.

I have some problems, however, to ise it: I cannot anyway get the consistency I would like.

How should I use it?

Pure? with water? How much water/oil?
Normannt I have a small container with the oil and I just dip the brush there a bit before going to the mixing area. Is it correct?


Thanks
Fab

couturej
09-14-2009, 08:08 AM
Hi Fab, I use 1/2 water and 1/2 linseed oil for my medium with several brands of WMOs and I find it works great. I haven't tried the stand oil yet but I would think it would work as well. I make sure to mix the water and oil well before I use it and I use it the same way you use the stand oil... in a contrainer and I just dip my brush in it. :)

Fabulous
09-14-2009, 09:56 AM
Thanks Janeth, I'll try this way
Fab

dbclemons
09-14-2009, 11:19 AM
Although it could be used as is, it's generally recommended to dilute stand oil down to a thinner consistency. I think 50/50 is a bit much, maybe 25% or less. The polymerized oil will help the paint settle more smoothly (leveling) and add some toughness to the dried surface, which makes it good for glazing. It tends to dry rather slow and glossy.

"Classic" recipies include stand oil mixed with turpentine and resins of one sort or another. However, resins like damar or balsam will not would work with water, in my experience. (W&N has a new WMO varnish that might be a sort of substitute - don't know.) The intent for a resin mixture is that it helps hold the paint stroke in place better and is good for detail work.

keenart
09-16-2009, 02:36 AM
W&N Has a Thinning Medium that is a substitute for water and mixes better with Oils. I use it to thin paints to a mayo like consistency but without oil.
You can find it at some of the big online art stores.

dcorc
09-16-2009, 05:48 AM
Stand oil is of high viscosity, and when added to paint will make the paint handle "long" (that is, the opposite of "short", "buttery".) It will also cause levelling of the paint surface and loss/fusing of brushstrokes, which is why it is often used as part of a glazing medium. The effect of stand oil is to create a glossy, enamelled-looking finish, and it is slow to tack, and slow to completely dry.

As David has said, generally stand oil is diluted to 25% or less (in traditional usage, with a solvent such as OMS or turpentine). I don't have experience of WS-stand-oil at this point, so can't advise on what would be comparable, using water or the Artisan thinner - though a similar extent of dilution would obviously be a good starting point for experimentation. Again, as David Clemons comments, in traditional usage a resin is often added to painting media containing stand-oil to help give the paint-handling some "stay-put" quality by imparting an earlier tacking point to the mix (though it achieves this by evaporation of the included volatile solvent - so it might be tricky trying to replicate this effect using the WM-paints and water, even with the suggested WM-varnish - but again, worth experimenting with?).

Remember also that you don't have to go straight into an actual artistic painting with this, there's a lot to be said for trying test-swatches of paint whenever you are trying out new mediums or processes, as a way of discovering handling properties, drying times, resistance to resolubilisation/lifting etc.

Rather than dipping your brush into the painting-medium and then into your paint (a process which often results in excessive amounts of medium being used) - may I suggest two alternatives? One is to add more defined quantities of medium to the paints put out on the palette using a dropper, a glass rod, or the tip of a small palette-knife, and then mixing it well into the paint using a palette-knife. The other (providing the surface of preceding layers if well-dried, a couple of days past touch-dry), is to put a very thin layer of medium down onto the surface of the painting on the areas you wish to work on (spread it out as thinly as you possibly can) and paint into it (this is called "painting into a couch").

I'd suggest that, unless you are looking for the levelling/enamelled properties stand-oil imparts, you might be better using W&N's WS-Linseed oil (plus some WS-thinner or water)?


Dave

dbclemons
09-16-2009, 12:16 PM
I like to use drinking straws for transfering liquids. Not real precise but it works okay and cheaply.

What has been mentioned in other threads is that the W&N thinner doesn't mix well with other brands of these oils. As long as your using Artisan paints and mediums it should be okay. Holbein makes a WMO standoil also, by the way.

Personal tests are always a good idea (it's a good time to do "studies,") but give your results enough time to develop. Problems may take several weeks or months to appear. In the mean time, play it safe. The general painting rule with any medium is to use it in small amounts if at all.

Lulu
09-16-2009, 12:51 PM
The general painting rule with any medium is to use it in small amounts if at all.

Am interested that you say 'if at all' because I am currently doing a painting and I'm finding that at the moment it is working well without any mediums, I think in part because the tit. white (Artisan) I'm using is quite oily and is mixing well (and I can work longer with it). I'm also finding that the paint is drying quite quickly (a day) without mediums too (although the warmer air temps we are having now may be contributing to that).

In another thread I said that I didn't think I would need to use any medium and someone replied that she strongly recommend I did. I did actually end up using a little for thin glazing in places, particularly in shadow areas.

What I want to know is, what happens if I don't? Do I need each subsequent layer to be thicker (therefore more fat over lean)?

dcorc
09-16-2009, 05:06 PM
I like to use drinking straws for transfering liquids. Not real precise but it works okay and cheaply.

But, like the other methods I mentioned, it's a lot more precise than dunking your brush in medium.

In another thread I said that I didn't think I would need to use any medium and someone replied that she strongly recommend I did. I did actually end up using a little for thin glazing in places, particularly in shadow areas.

What I want to know is, what happens if I don't? Do I need each subsequent layer to be thicker (therefore more fat over lean)?

The reason for using any painting medium is to influence brush-handling - whether the paint is short or long, whether it holds a stroke or levels, whether it is slippy or tacky/draggy, and so on. In traditional oils, volatile solvents add another parameter you can control as diluents, so that the paint can be put down as fluid paint (though not so diluted as to be washy) and then the solvent will evaporate off, leaving the paint film at a more nearly out-of-the-tube consistency within a short time after application, within the painting session, so it has more "stay-put" (technical term :D)

If you are painting in layers, the aim is that top layers should not overtake bottom layers in drying, as that way lie either wrinkling ("alligatoring") or drying cracks. Basically, subsequent layers should be no faster-drying and no less flexible than the lower layers. If you paint in relatively thin (that is, shallow, not dilute) layers, and give layers plenty of drying time there's a fair bit of leeway. While its good practice to err on the side of making later layers a little fatter (that is, oilier) - and to use faster-drying pigments in earlier layers, slower-drying ones in later layers - you don't have to ramp up the oil content in such a way that the initial layers are anorexic and the final ones are obese.

Its possible to carry through an entire painting with paint at "out of the tube" consistency, without any additions at all (unless the paint is exceptionally stiff)


Dave

Lulu
09-16-2009, 05:55 PM
great explanation, thanks Dave.

karenlee
09-16-2009, 06:41 PM
Winson Newton recommends you use no more than 25% water (with 75% stand oil) if you're using a oil/water medium for Artisan. as overly diluted medium threatens the adhesion of the paint film.
Surprisingly, WN recommends acrylic-gessoed canvas rather than oil-primed canvas for painting with Artisan! ( I wonder if that's becuase they don't make an oil prime??)

dbclemons
09-16-2009, 10:46 PM
What Dave said. You can safely use oils without adding mediums of any sort. As long as the new layer doesn't dry faster than what's already been painted you're okay.

Artisan's Titanium white is made with safflower oil which is a slower drying oil. The tube I have of that is not particularly oily - in fact, it's rather stiff, which is the main thing I keep harping on about Artisans.

Karenlee, W&N does make an oil primer, actually two if you include foundation white, but that one's getting harder to find due to its lead content.

DAK723
09-16-2009, 11:42 PM
Am interested that you say 'if at all' because I am currently doing a painting and I'm finding that at the moment it is working well without any mediums, I think in part because the tit. white (Artisan) I'm using is quite oily and is mixing well (and I can work longer with it). I'm also finding that the paint is drying quite quickly (a day) without mediums too (although the warmer air temps we are having now may be contributing to that).

In another thread I said that I didn't think I would need to use any medium and someone replied that she strongly recommend I did. I did actually end up using a little for thin glazing in places, particularly in shadow areas.

What I want to know is, what happens if I don't? Do I need each subsequent layer to be thicker (therefore more fat over lean)?

In both regular oils and Water Mixable oils, I rarely use any medium. As long as I let my layers dry between painting sessions, and my layers are about the same thickness, I never even worry about fat over lean. If you don't need a medium, then painting is so much simpler.

Don

couturej
09-17-2009, 06:56 AM
Winson Newton recommends you use no more than 25% water (with 75% stand oil) if you're using a oil/water medium for Artisan. as overly diluted medium threatens the adhesion of the paint film.
Surprisingly, WN recommends acrylic-gessoed canvas rather than oil-primed canvas for painting with Artisan! ( I wonder if that's becuase they don't make an oil prime??)

I just started adding some Artisans to my WMOs maybe I should be reducing my water to oil ratio to 25%.

Fabulous
09-17-2009, 10:33 AM
Great discussion in this thread.
Indeed, Titanium white has a wonderful consistency, while many other paints are too thick (from which one of the main reasons for using oil)
I can use just some water for the first layers, but for the final fat layesr I guess oil (mixed, as I understand from the thread, with maybe 50% of water) is the solution

I'd suggest that, unless you are looking for the levelling/enamelled properties stand-oil imparts, you might be better using W&N's WS-Linseed oil (plus some WS-thinner or water)?


Actually I don't know the difference... I bought Stand Oil because it was the only one I found at the art supply shop I visited...

Fab

dbclemons
09-18-2009, 12:38 PM
...but for the final fat layesr I guess oil (mixed, as I understand from the thread, with maybe 50% of water) is the solution...Actually I don't know the difference... I bought Stand Oil because it was the only one I found at the art supply shop I visited...

50% is too much, as has been mentioned. 25% or less is best.

W&N linseed oil medium is alkali refined, which is basically the same oil used in most of their paints (not white.) Stand oil is linseed oil that has been heat treated to change its features. All the other brands sell linseed oil too, which I believe is also alkali refined. Some also sell "painting medium" which contains other things like driers.

karenlee
09-18-2009, 01:07 PM
"50% is too much, as has been mentioned. 25% or less is best."

This means 50% water is too much, 25% or less is best.
Overuse of water is the most common cause of distress with WMO.

Fabulous
09-19-2009, 07:15 AM
So, summing up:
mix 25% water with 75% of oil and then use just a drop of this mixture in the brush (maybe not dipping the brush in the mixture, but put some of it on the palette and get it from there with the brush.

Correct?
Fab

karenlee
09-19-2009, 10:16 AM
Well, summing up: Add water by drops to the oil until you get the consistency you like , but the total volume of water added must not exceed 1/3 the volume of the oil. That procedure will keep you under the limit of 25% water in your medium.

dbclemons
09-19-2009, 12:00 PM
Sorry, karenlee, but 25% is 1/4 not 1/3. :p

Fab, transferring medium to the palette with your painting brush is usually discouraged since it can cause your mixtures to be more uneven. Most people don't like to break their rythym and switch tools but not doing so can cause problems. The brush is mainly meant as a tool to transfer mixed paint to the surface, not to mix paint on the palette. That's what palette knives were made for.

If I'm creating special preliminary mediums, I'll do that in a separate container, usually a little cup, and hold it over my paint on the palette dropping it in gradually, and then use a knife to mix it. You could also wipe the knife and just dip that into the medium, which keeps it cleaner than if using a brush. This is one of the advantages of not using mediums.

P.S. I don't think it's all that necessary to be that anal about your mixture precision, just be careful to not overdo it.

keenart
09-21-2009, 08:14 AM
There is also a Sun-thickened Stand Oil for the purest that is not heated in the kettle.