New impasto medium for oils


I’ve never used a medium to thicken oils before (I know, I know, should be trying wax). But they make me a bit nervous. I worry, in a slightly hand-wringing way, that I’ll get it all pear shaped and crazy crazy crazing will erupt… worse still… after it’s left the studio. My textures in the past have just been oils with drying mediums in them and then they sit and dry… for some time.

So, recently I bought some impasto medium (Langridge) with a drying medium in it and it’s quite interesting to use and perfect for this new commission that I’d like to complete in less than a decade. Sadly, it does seem to dry on the top after you’ve opened the jar, so it feels like I had to waste a bit from the jar on the 2nd use but I was really impressed with how quickly it feels dry. But I still cautiously go pretty ‘fat’ when I’m painting over the textured areas as the reality is that it’s not fully dried. (hand wringing)




130_AWI bit of preparatory sketching has happened, drawing on old images and sketches from a time amongst some spotted gums at Bundanon, phew, 8 years ago. And somewhere in there will be some references to Sydney Blue Gums as the Commissioners are from that lovely part of the world.

It’s another nice big piece and should keep me out of trouble for a while, except when I’m in trouble on the actual painting! I expect that’s when I’ll face the print filing. More gouache sketching to happen too as my first few were terribly unbrave and awkward.



8 thoughts on “New impasto medium for oils

  1. Initially I took “all pear shaped and crazy” personally, but I re-read and we’re good.

    I had a friend that used a gas barrier to keep moisture away from urethanes, but can’t find such a thing with a quick search. Maybe a light spritz with solvent before you seal the container?

    Bet Nolan or other oil people have an idea. CC

  2. Tetrafluoroethane is used to displace moisture in urethane material containers. Tetrafluoroethane is cited as a greenhouse gas. I can find no quick reference to it being used in painting practice. Chemist art blog lovers, please weigh in, but I withdrawl the suggestion. CC

  3. French ultramarine, Carey. yum yum yum yum yum. I like it to peek through.
    From time to time I’ve bought titanium white in a small can, and the instructions say to always breath a deep out breath into the can as you seal the lid. I never had them dry up, with only the occasional crust edge forming if I’d been away from it a while. So maybe I’ll do the breath test on this jar too…

  4. ah, AW: you’re right….DORLAND’S WAX….it IS a medium AND a dryer AND I’ve never had it crack. don’t know anything about anything else for buildup.

  5. BUT, ya gotta remember to use it as a medium IN the paint. Not by itself under the paint (don’t know if it would work or not)….just add it to your paint. EASY.

  6. Hi Nolan, as you know I’ve been dancing around the ‘idea’ of Dorlands for a while (not available here but easy to order from the States) but it’s been suggested that because I want to use something to create impasto on the bases of paintings, that wax may not be the thing as the layers you paint over it could craze/crack. So this impasto medium was suggested as it can go right on the base (and yes it’s the same, you add it to the paint) and have oil paint go over it in as many layers as you like, and that wax in the paint is best used closer to the surface. So I need wax too. Heeee. Do you use wax down low and then build on top of it, and not have any issues, or just use closer to the surface?

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