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View Full Version : Painting Questions - Please Read!


prochristi86
07-22-2006, 02:53 PM
Hey all,

I've been working solely on pencilling skills for quite some time, but I've decided that now's the time to start developing painting skills. I am heavily attracted to the intensity of color in Bisley's oil paintings, and would like to learn to paint with oils, but I'm concerned about the health risks of painting with oils. I wouldn't mind wearing a mask while painting, which I intend to do outside (in my garage) anyway, because my mother is very sensitive to oil fumes (and I don't want to be sucking in the stuff too much, either). Also, I've painted an image in acrylic, and I wasn't crazy about the depth of color in it.

So... what I'd like to know, is:

1. Do you have to start painting with acrylics, or can you start with oils?
2. Does anyone have any knowledge/advice for how I can minimize health risks associated with oils? Is wearing a mask absolutely neccesary?
3. (INKING) Does anyone know which brushes are good and stiff and very useful for inking? What about small ones?

One of the things I'd really like to do in painting is to mix colors, so I'll probably need to go for oils, but the health risks concern me.

Please help! Thank you!

James Smith

j giar
07-22-2006, 03:29 PM
1. I started with acrylics but quickly jumped to oils for the ease of blending color.
2. Oils never bothered me..odor wise. It's the turpentine fumes that bother alot of folks. They do make low or odorless turpentine.
3. I've always used red sable brushes. I usually will go into the store and pick up one that I always use and maybe something new, just to try it. 8 times out of 10 I end up with what I'm comfortable with. Which is ultimately what you should do

prochristi86
07-22-2006, 10:10 PM
Thank you very much! I've decided to go for oils - I love their "look," and I'd probably end up switching to them (from acrylic) anyway. I'm looking forward to getting started on them!!

James Smith

VANDAL
07-23-2006, 04:35 AM
You wont be dissatisfied with oils at all. They are MUCH more flexible than acrylics. Oils blend a LOT better and are also great for glazing as well. The only disadvantage is drying time but that can be overcome with the right linseed oil, go with the thinner kind unless you plan on taking a break for a while and still want to blend later. Unlike acrylics oils will mix beautifully without looking "muddy". Oils work best with stiffer brushes but keep a fan brush on hand for more smooth blending. As for inking i like my WN #2 which is quite flexible. I would never use my WN #2 with oils however because it's just not stiff enough.

Ingrid K. V. Hardy
07-23-2006, 11:47 AM
When using oil paint, there are alternatives. They now have water-mixable oils - the ones I tried are called Artisan - and there are also non-toxic oils out now, but I forget the name. They do handle a bit differently, but, like different kinds of chocolate, sometimes that's good! If you go to a well-stocked art supply store, they should be able to help you. As for what to start with first - acrylic or oils - there have been books written on that, and I'm sure everyone here will have their own ideas, too. And each has it's strong point. Personally, I would suggest that if you can, play with both and see what you like! Of course, that's coming from someone who's been trying to decide for the past 20 years, so..... :)

Scott Story
07-23-2006, 10:04 PM
Thirty years ago, when I was learning oils, no one told me (or perhaps no one knew) that they were toxic. The turpentine smelled, and maybe a few of the other things smelled, like linseed oil, but no one worried about proper ventilation or getting it on your skin. Now, I guess, we know better. Back then, they had lead and chrome in the paints, too. In fact, we were taught to bring our brushes to a point by cleaning them in turpentine then drawing them to a point with our lips--really! Like I said, now we have MSDS sheets and we know better.

I never got sick, to my knowledge, from any of this.

I met a woman in one of the figure drawing groups I go to who applies this lotion to her skin which supposedly protects her from the toxins in art supplies. OK, I think that's over the top, but that's just me. Still, I think I would follow the safety instructions for using all the materials in oil painting.

My life is simpler. I like watercolors. They are not as rich as oils, sure, but they don't stink and clean up easily and there's a lot going for this medium.

dano
07-26-2006, 02:12 PM
Hey all,
but I'm concerned about the health risks of painting with oils. I wouldn't mind wearing a mask while painting,
No real health risks. I recommend mineral spirits (odorless if possible) instead of turpentine. The colors are achieved in some cases using poisonous elements but as long as you dont eat them or rub them into wounds like Neosporin you'll be fine.


So... what I'd like to know, is:

1. Do you have to start painting with acrylics, or can you start with oils?
2. Does anyone have any knowledge/advice for how I can minimize health risks associated with oils? Is wearing a mask absolutely neccesary?
3. (INKING) Does anyone know which brushes are good and stiff and very useful for inking? What about small ones?

One of the things I'd really like to do in painting is to mix colors, so I'll probably need to go for oils, but the health risks concern me.

Please help! Thank you!

James Smith
1. you can start with either.
2. where did you hear there were risks? None that i know of.

i recommend doing 90% of your tone and color mixing on your pallette and not the canvas. The only mixing you should do on the canvas is for blending color borders (where color fields meet) or adding small amounts of white (or some other brightener) to lighten a middle tone.

Good luck! If done right, oil painting kicks ASS!

TAP_LEGION
07-28-2006, 10:41 PM
^ Don't listen to that guy...he paints with his own feces....














:yuk: :nyah: :yuk:

dano
07-28-2006, 10:43 PM
you're just jealous of the colors i can get.

sevans
08-03-2006, 06:12 PM
Dano is completely right on the colouring mixing tip, especially if your going to use oils.

Oils paint (because of it drying time and great mixing ability) can easily be turned into a muddy messy if over rendered/brushed.

I personally have more success when I think of my drawings like a paint by numbers pic. Block in all the major areas of colour and pick the edges to blend. Throw extra colours and touches in after you lay down the solid base.

TAP_LEGION
08-06-2006, 02:04 AM
Plus you gotta build up layers...When I first start out painting fleshtones , theyre almost green , then go a strange violet brown before suddenly popping into a nice skintone type tint.

I like acrylics because I'm not really a fan of alot of the chemicals involved with oils...plus what I did do years ago kinda turned to mud. At least with acrylics , clean up/dilution only involves water. Just watch which brands you use. There's a HUGE difference in the grounds between crap like Liquitex and the good stuff like Golden.

Using real paints give you wonderful mistakes that you can learn from...something that will NEVER happen with PC art.

ShanE
08-06-2006, 03:35 AM
You'll get an immense amount of experiance handling this traditionaly, good to hear. I painted in oils for 15 years and stopped because everyone in the house was getting headaches, especially my 4yr old at the time. Then one night I spilled an entire new bottle of Cobalt Dryer (VERY poisoness) on the wood floor. I spent the next 4 hours sterilizing the floor and cleaning with a tooth brush between the wood floor slats.
The next week I put everything away, bought a new computer, a wacom tablet and Corel Painter 5.5 (I'm using 9 now). Good luck and hope you stay safe.

Flairbrusher
08-13-2006, 07:13 PM
Hi, I just wanted to recommend a great book for the sake of speed in oil painting. "Boris Vallejo Fantasy Art Techniques. Since I have experience painting in Oil, Acrylic and Watercolor (and now Corel Painter 9), I try to use one best suited for the look I am attempting to achieve. Boris explains the usefulness of painting on Illustration board with a coating of acrylic gesso which speeds the drying time of the oil paint. It adds to the brilliance of the oil paint and there's no need to sit there with a hair dryer like Frazetta used to do at deadline time. Hope this helped.
-Anthony
http://www.anthonyhochrein.com
http://www.cafepress.com/ahochrein