Tips and Studies

Those who live in glass houses…

…or use glass palettes. I get a lot of questions about my homemade palette. I’ve been using this palette for several years and by now it’s pretty beat-up. In fact, I attempted to replace it recently but the replacement’s glass cracked before I could use it. What is it? It was a glass-framed reproduction that…

Not all synthetic brushes are awful

I heap abuse on synthetic brushes. But some synthetics are not too bad–for oils. I haven’t found any synthetics that can replace sables for watercolor painting. Not even close. These synthetic rounds from Winsor and Newton are OK. Monarch brushes are made from “synthetic mongoose fibers,” whatever that might be. Winsor Newton claims that they…

Maulsticks

When my daughter was very young, with a very serious face she asked, “Daddy, why do you hold a big stick in your studio?” To a child, the most question-provoking thing about the studio was my homemade maulstick. You can see my maulstick in this photograph. It’s resting against a 40″ x 52″ painting (the…

Turpentine diaries 7/14/19

In recent days I’ve spent time preparing new paintings, that is, drawing and finishing designs. However, I did spend some time actually painting. I had several sessions with my most recent painting, Lens. Most objects come alive under the brush by using the complement of its primary color in the half-tones–the areas between the higher…

A look at Rublev oils – video review

Link to the review on Turpentine diaries YouTube page. Last week I finally got off my behind and started podcasting, and this week I’ve produced my first video. In this video I look at two oils from Rublev: Sun-thickened Linseed Oil, and Sun-bleached Linseed Oil. Rublev produces a lot of art materials, some good, and…

Baseline yourself

Regardless of where you are in your career, you will do well to establish a baseline for your oil-painting toolkit. The baseline provides a powerful framework that you can use to analyze materials and techniques. At some point in your journey, you begin to question the received wisdom that guided you at the outset. This…