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More art advice

Paulin writes,

Here my dilemma today. I need to fill a 36 × 36 Can­vas with a base color. I need the paint to be really fluid/wet so as to have a very smooth sur­face (no brush strokes) and be able to blend mono­chro­mat­i­cally to give some depth. I am get­ting all kinds of mixed mes­sages about how to han­dle the paint itself. Some say use galkyd slow dry with a bit of turpenoid, but I have read that the paint can “wrin­kle”. Some say use liquin but it will take for­ever to dry…

I’m per­son­ally not a big fan of alkyd-based medi­ums, espe­cially in multi-layered paint­ings. Also, I hate the way they smell.

Here’s what I’d do. I would thin the paint very slightly (I like real turps or spike, but not every­one likes the smell, so you can use min­eral spir­its if nec­es­sary). Make sure you have excel­lent ven­ti­la­tion. I’d apply the paint with a wide, soft brush, get­ting it rea­son­ably flat. Then I’d take a clean soft flat or fan brush and dip it in sol­vent. With a very soft touch, I’d whis­per it over the sur­face of the paint­ing, knock­ing down flat spots. This would take a long time for a 36 × 36 can­vas. I’d let the can­vas dry flat in a dust-free room (or cov­ered by a jury-rigged plas­tic “tent” to keep dust off of it).

Another option would be to add a bit of thinned stand oil to the paint. Stand oil tends to level brush strokes and dry hard and glossy, espe­cially when the paint­ing is allowed to dry flat to avoid sag­ging. For lay­ers after that, you’d need to take steps to ensure adhe­sion to the glossy base layer, such as wet sand­ing or using a medium con­tain­ing a balsam.

Posted in art materials, art technique, oil painting.

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  1. Marie Sims says

    I hope you can help me. I want to apply gem­stones to a paint­ing. What type of adhe­sive should I use? Do gems work bet­ter with one type of paint or another? Thank you



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