Tips on Oil Painting – Supplies

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Of course, before you can start a painting you have to have a number of art supplies. There are hundreds if not thousands of supplies and gadgets related to painting and on top of that many brands to choose from. Here, we will list the most essential tools you need to create an oil painting, that is, at least the way I create such a painting. Here we go:

* Brushes – Again, there are hundreds of kinds of brushes and many different brands. But to start, you really only need a few filbert brushes of fairly good quality (if you can afford them).

1. One large no. 10 or 12
2. One or two no. 8's
3. One or two no. 6's
4. One small no. 2

This is more than enough. The reason I propose filbert brushes is that they more or less combine the capacities of a round and a flat brush. Also, the main reason we need two brushes of the same size is that we can then use two colors at the same time. That means, less brush rinsing.

* Canvas – A bunch of canvases. At this time I suggest you buy pre-stretched canvases so you can start to paint immediately. Good standard starting sizes are 16 "x 12" or 18 "x24". You can also use canvas panels which might sometimes be cheaper depending on where you buy them.

* Easel – You need an easel to put your canvas on. Try to buy a sturdy easel. In fact, you could even make your own easel out of wood if you are a bit handy.

* Palette – I prefer to a paper palette of at least 16 "x20". I actually use an 18 "x24" which gives me even more room (that is, of course, when I paint at home). These palette sheets come in pads of 50 sheets and are not very expensive. You use them to mix your paintings on.

* Paints – Yes, you do need paintings! Try to buy tubes containing at least 37 ml of paint. Some brands have tubes of 200 ml and for certain colors (such as white) they may even offer larger containers. The totality of tube colors you use is also called a palette. As a starting palette I suggest the following colors:

1. Lemon Yellow
2. Cadmium Yellow
3. Cadmium Red
4. Permanent Rose
5. French Ultramarine
6. Phthalo Blue (Red Shade)
7. Titanium White
8. Ivory Black

Of course, as you get more experience, you can add some tube colors. However, when you start out it is probably best to use as few colors as possible. The above colors let you produce very clean secondary colors and all sorts of tertiary ones as well. Secondary colors are colors that are made with two colors and tertiary ones are colors that are made with three colors.

* Turpentine – If you use real oil paints then you need at least a quart of turpentine or a substitute. If you use water soluble oil paints then all you need is regular water.

* Odds and Ends – If you use real oil paints you need a small container of linseed oil. You could also get a can of retouch varnish spray. And finally, also a few rolls of paper towel.

This is about the minimum you need to start oil painting. As stated before, there are many more tools to be had. I suggest going to a few art stores and see what they have. You can even check out some of the Internet stores and maybe purchase some of the tools that particularly useful to you.


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