View Full Version : What mediums to use?

02-09-2010, 06:06 AM
HI all! :wave:

I still feel I have much to learn about what mediums to use, so I'm on a mission to find out specifics of what mediums people favour to help aid my decisions.

When I painted with traditional oils, I used a mix of turps and linseed oil, using more linseed and less turps in layers towards the surface in keeping with fat over lean. Now with water mixable oils I started out doing a similar thing with water and water mixable linseed oil, but I found a lot of people seem to favour W&N water mixable oil painting medium, which is also recommended for use of oiling out, so got myself some of that to use instead of linseed oil in my last painting. For my next painting I have also got myself some water mixable oil thinner to use instead of water, so will most likely use that with the water mixable oil painting medium.

I was just wondering what other people thought of the differences between linseed oil and oil painting medium, and what they use and why? I notice a lot of people seem to use quick dry medium as well, but I've always been fairly happy with how the paint drys with my style of working, which is usually 4 or 5 not too thick layers working fat over lean in a realistic style, so haven't bothered with that option so far.


02-10-2010, 12:09 AM
I use the Artisan painting medium. I add Artisan thinner for leaner layers, and if I want fatter layers, I add Artisan linseed oil. I sometimes use Artisan quick dry medium instead of the painting medium. It can be made leaner or fatter in the same way.

02-10-2010, 07:49 AM
TBH I mostly just use the Artisan linseed oil now, but I have used the quick drying medium in the past (though I prefer not to rush the drying times now) and the artisan thinners are definatly a must if you are thinning the paint to work with - if you thin with water you get a colour change as the paint dries, and the finish of the dried paint can be a little on the matt side!

02-11-2010, 11:00 AM
I do have a question regarding mediums that seams germane to this thread - I honestly thin my W/M oils with water most of the time. I'm experimented with the Artisan mediums and turpenoid gel but ultimately found that if I want a thinner coat or a background tint I use some water and it seems to work out fine. My question is can someone give me some information as to why linseed or other mediums vs. water?

Thank you in advance.

02-11-2010, 04:21 PM
because thinning too much with water reduces the amount of binder (the stuff that makes the pigment stick to the canvas) if you take out too much binder then the paint might not form a strong enough bond with the canvas,

Linseed oil and most of the mediums are binders themselves so no matter how much you thin the pigment down you never lose adhesion (not that you want to be adding too much of any medium)

the other problem with adding water is that you get a colour shift as the paint dries - something that the mediums don't do.

02-11-2010, 10:09 PM
ahhh, that makes sense. Thank you.

I'm painting this set of wings on a desk top, mentioned in another thread, and I want a nice gloss the paint so it will pop after the furniture maker finishes the piece. Should I use linseed or something like Walnut Alkyd Medium to make the paint have an extra glossy finish? I've painted a base layer and will allow 3-5 days for that to dry and will go back over it with this final layer and I'm curious what medium will be best suited for my purpose?


02-11-2010, 10:18 PM
I would think that you would get a better answer in the Mixed Media Section. What might look best with the paint, might not work as well with the wood in the table.

Good luck!

02-12-2010, 01:13 PM
Well, at this point it's just going to be another layer of paint over this base layer - so a bit thicker and more color as this was only a based white layer, but I am not sure the wood comes into play on the final product. I could be wrong, thats why I'm seeking opinions.