Glad you found the info helpful, Scott and Laura. In general people look for the oil that has the least impurities in it – these will look clearest in the bottle. Therefore, it is less likely to yellow over time. When I visited the M. Graham factory in 2015, I learned some things about how oil paint is made. Articles » Oil Painting » Painting » A Comprehensive Guide on Oils for Oil Painters. Yellowing of linseed oil based white paint may be caused by the painting being left to cure in too dark an environment. Kremer Walnut Oil is a good choice. Thanks for chiming in, Rik. Linseed oil is the quickest drying over time in comparison to the long drying times of the rest. I normally don’t add walnut oil while painting, only small amounts of odorless mineral spirits in the beginning stages of block-in. However, it is not edible! Walnut also discolors slowly and dries slow too. If so what does one use? (See photos. I think a color test is in order. Walnut oil is a natural alternative to linseed oil, stand oil, and harsh solvents. Walnut oil has been used to make paint for a long time – longer than linseed oil. When dry, the film of Walnut oil is stronger than poppy oil. Refined linseed oil is less likely to have impurities in it. However, it as more impurities in it compared to refined linseed oil – as can be noticed in its coloring. It can be mixed into paints and used like linseed or stand oil… NOTE: the screen you’re using to view this post will affect the way the colors look. You can use walnut oil instead of linseed as a medium and it won’t yellow. But so far, I’m not seeing much yellowing in either brand. I just recognize the quality of what they produce and want to share my findings with you. But M. Graham’s walnut-oil-based Titanium White still remained a truer white. This oil has a glossy finish, is pale in colour and yellows less over time than linseed oil. :: Crested Butte, Colorado :: Join more than 1,500 other subscribers. Poppy oil is very pale and transparent. Titanium White showed the most yellowing, but the other colors I tested are showing slight darkening and some saturation loss over time, compared to the M. Graham & Co. brand of oil colors I tested. The natural oils used in oil painting are obtained from seeds and nuts they are referred to as vegetable oils. Subscribe to Art Studio Life. We won't send you spam. There are of course oils that exist that never dry. Whereas safflower, sunflower and poppy seed oil have less tendency to yellow. Interesting. Thank you for the info. BONUS FREE Color Mixing Guide – Help take the uncertainty out of mixing colors! Thank you so much for sharing what you learned. The brand I tested was made with alkali-refined linseed oil which yellowed in my tests. All of these oils mentioned do not dry via evaporation. Thanks for commenting! After my white test, I started tests with several other colors. I personally think it’s better than linseed oil for a couple of reasons. However, after about two months I began to see significant yellowing of the linseed-oil-based white. (Both are considered professional quality, not student-grade. But just took a second look at ingredients and see alkali refined linseed oil. thank you for investigating this! I first tested Titanium White. Once dried, they cannot return to liquid form. Drying time takes about 5 – 7 days on average. There are essentially two different varieties of linseed oil – cold pressed and refined. Don’t assume that a high-priced brand of paint must be the best because it’s so expensive. The test results I saw at the M. Graham factory made me realize that I needed to do some color testing of my own. I’ve been using walnut oil for my whites and blues for years because I dread the yellowing of linseed. Linseed yellows the slowest which is one of the reasons why it’s commonly used today. We’ll see. And if you decide to start doing your own color tests, a word to the wise: it’s kinda boring and takes a long time. My favorite I use is: 1 part dammar varnish – 1 to 3 part turpentine (depending on how thin you want the paint to be or to apply “fat over lean”) and 1 part walnut oil. Discovering all of this makes me thankful that I’ve been using mostly M. Graham & Co. oils for several years now. Walnut oil dries in four or five days. Does this mean no one uses linseed oil for a medium? Some artists say that if you expose yellowed linseed-oil-based paint to direct sunlight, the paint will return to its original color. Linseed oil is essentially the same as the flaxseed oil you will come across at your grocery store. As a subscriber to Art Studio Life you will receive regular post updates, painting tutorials, lessons and ASL's latest and greatest. And now after less than a month, the linseed-oil-based swatch is yellower again. I’ve been using Gablin because I love the buttery texture. You will never want to use these of course as you want your painting to dry eventually! ), The two whites looked identical when I laid down the swatches. As Giorgio Vasari wrote in 1550 “grind the colors with walnut or linseed oil, though walnut oil is better because it yellows less with time”. This article may contain affiliate links, please read my affiliate disclosure for more information. I sent you an email about your linseed oil question, Liz. Linseed oil can sometimes have a tendency to yellow over time. best to you. I began to read up on linseed oil and found that other artists online have done white tests with similar results. (I suspect that many, many other artists assume the same thing.). These oils serve three purposes for your painting: So, now a little bit about each oil and its pluses and minuses.. 9 Must have items for beginning oil painters, Gifts For Artists Who Paint - Gift Ideas For Painters, Perspective Drawing How to Guide For Beginners. This oil is one of the most popular used by painters due to it creates very stable paint. As it's a thin oil, it's used to make oil paint more fluid. I had assumed that color stability was a given with professional-grade oils. Under certain conditions, paper towels or rags with linseed oil … I mean, oil paint isn’t cheap, right? A practical guide to color mixing, with actionable lessons you can put into practice today! Many artists who are allergic to certain elements traditionally used in oil painting have turned to walnut oil as a medium. I have been struggling to find a brand of white that agrees with my technique (or lack there of lol) .

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