Originally Posted by painterted
Larry, why should a artist get more for a oil painting over a watercolor, is it because it takes longer to paint?
well the first thing that should be said up front, is that talent and years to develop oneself should not be so limited by choice of media. Thus, we can agree it is unfair.
But we can think of other forms of art to compare.
When we think of John Singer Sargent...(when most think)...we think of his oils, and his portraits. His reputation as a portrait painter.
We rarely consider though he became financially independent from them and the most popular of his day, he walked away from them, tiring of them...and preferred to paint plein air watercolors.
Think of Rembrandt...you think of his Dutch Oil Paintings...but what of his etchings, his prints?
They have value...but not compared to his oils.
I don't know fully...but it seems to be what it is.
About 1993 (trying to remember date exactly), my agent got my paintings into a gallery in the Mall of America in Bloomington, MN (Minneapolis)...but to get in there I had to paint nothing smaller than 22" x 28" and nothing under $2400...
My agent got three pieces in, and this gallery had a $14,000 monthly lease to meet before seeing profits, paying employees etc., so they had to move art, and a good deal of it. Hanging space was valuable. You sold...or you weren't on their walls for long.
They took three pieces from me...and within the first week sold two, my agent called and they wanted several more.
When I arrived at the gallery, the manager was tied up with a customer. I walked over to the one remaining piece on the wall of mine. The label had the piece as an oil..when in fact I had brought them three acrylic paintings. I mixed gelex (today called "Extender Gel Medium") into my acrylics which gave them more body...thicker appearance, and I suppose some confused them with oils. But I had specifically told them they were acrylics.
When I talked to the manager and said, "um...er...you have labeled my painter over there as an oil, and its not. Its an acrylic!"
His eyes got very large...eyebrows raised, and asked me... "how quickly can you get me some oils?"
I do know only one reason I might want more for an oil than say a watercolor from a purely material reason. I use up more pigment on a painting with oils than I will with watercolor, and say one tube of Cadmium Lemon Yellow can run me from $29 to $40...
Painting transparently and thinly...I can get more mileage from my paints with watercolor.
But...I'm not going to defend oils...have no argument to present to boost watercolors. Its one of those "don't shoot the messenger" things...and just reporting that I, and many many artists have run into the same staunch bias over the years.
We have had this discussion many times in the forums of Wetcanvas never to my recollection coming to any resolve.