Monday, January 10, 2022

Oils on a deadline

There are a few discussions we have every single year on the NaMoPaiMo Facebook page, and one of them is this: How do you paint a model horse in one month with oils? 

Oil paints have an extremely long working time. This makes them wonderfully easy to blend and gives the artist plenty of time to adjust and refine their work. The downside is the drying time, which can be epic. Probably every wanna be oil painter has a story about that one time they used oils on a model, and it took months to dry. Certainly, I do.

Happily, there are ways around this. In today's guest post, Kristen Cermele shares her methods for painting model horses quickly - and beautifully - with oil paints.

Painting a Horse in One Month with Oils

by Kristen Cermele

Intermediate/Advanced oil painters, UNITE! 

I have seen a few people say that they would like to try oils this year, but are too afraid of the drying time. There are several ways that oil painters manage to paint quick enough for NaMoPaiMo. Here are my best tips.

1. I personally do a hand painted acrylic base coat(s). Many painters do not and want their horses finished entirely in oils. But if you are worried about time limits, having a base color to work on that's closer to the color you want to finish to (or not, I say this often but I use gold and bronze as base colors a lot) than white primer will help. This is also helpful if you are painting a white/grey horse, as you don't want your "base" that can peek through the end result to be white primer (for yellowing reasons) but rather, white paint.

2. Very, very thin layers. You're more dry brushing than you are wet painting.
3. Use a dryer. My personal preference is cobalt drier. I put a small spot of it into my paints, and the difference in drying time is night and day. They dry overnight and some colors dry in time to be worked on again that same day - even with me also usually adding a bit of linseed oil in as well which can be considered an extender.
4. Have a covered place to let your horse dry. This can literally be a big Breyer shipping box you set over your horse, I have a cheap cabinet with doors. Painting goes a lot quicker if you don't have to pick out dust and pet hair as you go. 
Thank you for your sage advice, Kristen. I hope to see a lot of people using oils during this year's NaMoPaiMo!

No comments:

Post a Comment