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Old 05-17-2019, 05:32 PM
contumacious contumacious is offline
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Making Phthalo oil paints

I found some Phthalo blue and green pigments at a very good price but I have never tried making oil paints with them. I know they do not behave the same as the ocher, umber, cads and cobalt pigments when mulling. If any of you who have already worked with these pigments to make oil paint, please chime in with any suggestions.
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Old 05-18-2019, 02:39 AM
Richard P Richard P is online now
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Re: Making Phthalo oil paints

Do you have any filler? I think I remember reading that Phthalo Blue has 20 times the tinting strength of Ultramarine.
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Old 05-18-2019, 02:59 AM
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Re: Making Phthalo oil paints

You can prepare many interesting paints with many different fillers. Each filler makes it's own effect. Blank Fixe makes Manganese blue hue; Talc gives matte transparency; Calcium Carbonate gives great rheology.
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Old 05-18-2019, 08:24 PM
contumacious contumacious is offline
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Re: Making Phthalo oil paints

I am planning to use fumed silica and possibly calcium carbonate if the silica isn't enough to give it some body. I just made some paint with Gamblin's Synthetic Iron Oxide - PR101 pigment that would not produce a desirable texture without adding some calcium carbonate and fumed silica to it. It was quite difficult to mull when compared to burnt sienna. It ended up making a very nice looking and handling paint. I expect the Phthalo pigments to demand a LOT more filler just to get a decent texture. I am not too concerned about the tinting strength, in fact that is one thing I like about them. A little goes a very long way in my plein air kit.
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Old 05-19-2019, 01:48 AM
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Re: Making Phthalo oil paints

Fumed silica absorbs 200% oil and it seems not useful for me as I like to have lower oil/pigment ratio in paint. Very high oil content cause oil paint darkening. Calcium Carbonate absorbs 15%-25% of oil and is a very fine filler. I tried to add eggshell white to regular Phthalo Green and Phthalo Blue paint and the result was perfect. Such paint lost deep color in masstone, but became suitable for underpainting portrait and to glaze blue colored bottles painting. I can't do the same job with other paints.
Said, that several percentage of bentonite content can give superior creamy consistency to paint and can replace dangerous stearates and waxes.

Last edited by Gigalot : 05-19-2019 at 02:05 AM.
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Old 05-19-2019, 02:52 PM
contumacious contumacious is offline
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Re: Making Phthalo oil paints

Thanks for the tips Gigalot. I didn't add a lot of fumed silica. It was suggested as an option to keep the oil from separating from the pigment, similar to what beeswax is used for. So far it seems to be working.

I can tell this will take some serious study effort to do it right with the various pigments. Is there a resource out there on paint making that is fairly up to date and comprehensive? I ground my mulling plate using 180 grit carbide grit. The grit broke down as I used it, so I am guessing it ended up about the equivalent of grinding with fresh 200 grit. It works well, but when I go to scrape the paint together or to clean the plate, it holds a lot of pigment. Perhaps it is a too bit coarse? The muller (a very nice hand made one from ebay) out of the box looked like it was probably at least as fine as 240 grit. I have no reference point, having never mulled paint with a glass muller and plate.

One of the most appealing things about it is that I can make the paint just the consistency, intensity and hue I want it to be right out of the tube, plus as long as I have some pigment and oil on hand I will never run out of paint.

I have read that some pigments will set up in the tube fairly quickly. What would you recommend to slow that down, if anything?
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Old 05-19-2019, 03:06 PM
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Re: Making Phthalo oil paints

Quote:
Originally Posted by contumacious

I have read that some pigments will set up in the tube fairly quickly. What would you recommend to slow that down, if anything?
I think, that you can add to oil paint small amount of bees wax and probably dammar varnish. 1% wax and 1%-2% Dammar resin. Or you can try bentonite and castor wax.
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Old 05-19-2019, 03:24 PM
contumacious contumacious is offline
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Re: Making Phthalo oil paints

I have some beeswax paste and will add 1% to my next tube of earth pigment paint. Thanks.
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Old 05-20-2019, 07:06 AM
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Re: Making Phthalo oil paints

You can also use Christoballite powder; powdered green minerals like glaukonite and celadonite as a pigment filler. Baryte and Wollastonite powders.
Also, any available mineral powder can be used to make a paint with Phthalo pigment. Microparticles of Phthalo pigment very well absorbs on the surface of most minerals, that gives transparency and high saturation effect to oil paint and you can create unique paint color, perfect body and drying properties. You can try to prepare your own mineral filler using powdered rocks. Aluminum powder additive gives very high level of opacity to phthalo paints. Useful for underpaintings.

Last edited by Gigalot : 05-20-2019 at 07:10 AM.
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Old 05-21-2019, 04:03 PM
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Re: Making Phthalo oil paints

As for the pigment/binder ratio, most of PB15 have an OA ranging from 35 to 50g oil for 100g pigment.
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