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Syndics of the Drapers' GuildIt is an old saying that rules are meant to be broken. No one did this more successfully than Rembrandt. For instance, the rich red in the table cloth in the Syndics is obtained by glazing a translucent red over brown, instead of over a brighter red. Rules are meant to be broken, but it is necessary to know first what the rules are. Read more about these painting rules.

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Posted in Paints By George O'Hanlon

Cracks caused by poking canvasFor over a hundred years, most of the causes of cracking have been explored: humidity and temperature, expansion and contraction, stress, and paint embrittlement. The symptoms were obvious—cracking and paint loss—but the causes were not clearly understood. In 1982, Marion Mecklenburg and other scientists at the Smithsonian Institute, reported the first systematic explanation of painting mechanics, and especially that of canvas paintings

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Posted in Supports By George O'Hanlon

This rule appears to confuse so many artists or ignored completely by others. Perhaps a better way to express the rule "always paint fat on lean" is always paint a slower drying paint film over a faster drying film. Think in terms of the last applied paint film being more flexible than the paint film underneath. Another way to clarify this rule is to think of adding a little more oil in the last application of paint than was included in the paint layer just covered, or not to dilute with solvent the last applied layer anymore than the previous one was thinned.

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Posted in The Director's Blog Paints By George O'Hanlon

A whitish surface appearance on oil paintings is a phenomenon of modern oil paintings. While such hazes have traditionally been described by painters as blooming or blanching, nomenclature has not yet caught up with the different causes. Other terms currently used are: efflorescence, exudation, fatty acid deposit or migration, saponification, crystallization, chalking, mold, and ghost images.

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Posted in The Director's Blog Paints By George O'Hanlon

Painting Best Practices Workshop, TorontoNatural Pigments spent years developing a technical workshop to teach skills that are not taught in art school and universities—a thorough understanding of artist’s materials and tools, what they are designed to do, when to chose them and how to provide considerable longevity to your finished work. This workshop covers the most important aspects of painting that have proven to be the best practices over the centuries.

Read more for locations and dates.

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Posted in Events By George O'Hanlon

Selecting the right varnish for your paintingAn unvarnished painting is vulnerable to dirt and dust that will eventually become embedded in the paint. It is also subject to deterioration caused by ultraviolet light and oxidation, and abrasion from handling and transport. A varnish can protect the painting from dirt, ultraviolet light and abrasion. Applying a varnish to your painting than is an important part of maintaining its appearance and value. If you decide to apply a varnish to your painting, you must decide on the type of varnish, method of application, and desired final appearance. The following discussion can help you make the right choice for your art work.

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Posted in Varnish By George O'Hanlon

The Palette of Teresa Oaxaca

2/26/2016 6:00 AM

Teresa Oaxaca paletteI have been working with Rublev Colours Artist Oils for the past several years now. So much so that my palette is nearly entirely comprised of their colors, and for my students you can buy the colors on the palette that I use in my workshops. This is for students who wish to use my full or limited palette. The list of materials is an integral part of my working palette and it has been selected for fast drying time so that your progress in the workshop may run smoothly without the added difficulty of having to work over still wet or tacky paint. You will notice the large number of earth colors, umbers and lead pigments. The oils that bind these pigments and that will be used as a medium also exemplify quick drying times. 

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Posted in Paints By Teresa Oaxaca

The Palette of Katherine Stone

2/16/2016 1:00 PM

Kate Stone PaletteIf you’re interested in Rublev Colours Artist Oils or were thinking about buying my paint set, this video will acquaint you with how I prepare my palette. Many of the colours require some personalization before I use them. You'll see in the video.

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Posted in Paints By Katherine Stone

Wrap several layers of masking tape around the ferruleOver time, the appearance of paintings change not only because of accumulated dirt, but also because aging itself alters the materials that make up the painting. Besides the build-up of dust, dirt, and grime (e.g., soot, nicotine, etc.), the gradual yellowing and cracking of the varnish layer alters the image. This article gives artists practical and safer methods to clean their own paintings than what is currently taught or practiced by artists. The cleaning methods demonstrated in this article apply specifically to oil paintings, but the techniques and materials can also be used with additional precautions on gouache and tempera paintings.

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Posted in Paints By George O'Hanlon

Preparing the cartoonThis three-day workshop will give you the skills needed to complete fresco painting for walls and portable panels. The course begins with hands-on instruction on applying plaster. Using a prototype you draw and paint the cartoon, transfer it to the plaster and begin painting the image. At the end of this workshop you will complete a portable fresco to take home with you.

Read more for locations and dates

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Posted in Events By George O'Hanlon

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