This report reviews a few of the more popular oil painting mediums, their purpose, and some advice on how best to use them. The purpose of adding these materials to your own oil paints would be to alter the behavior of the paint during application and affecting results after the painting dries. Behavior describes the way the paint comes off the brush and slips on the surface, how it covers either the surface or succeeding layers, and just how it feels as you apply it.
Brands of paint behave differently and mediums allow you to control the paint how you want it to act as you use it. Some paint manufacturers –and here I am only referring to the artist grade paints rather than the student grades–are stiffer right out of the tube. Student grades have less pigment and more fillers like additional oil and simply don’t perform well. If you use those paints that are stiffer out of the tube, but want more versatility in the way they handle, or behave, you’ll require a medium. Other artist grade paints are what I call fluffier and go on more easily right from the tube. If you would like brush strokes apparent in your final painting, a stiffer paint works better. Adding a refined linseed oil in tiny amounts until it seems right to you will promote the paint to level out and reveal less strokes. Less linseed oil and more strokes will show. Always remember to never put a faster drying layer on a slow drying layer of paint.
Glazing mediums permit you to apply thin layers of paint and construct color and luminosity with the viewer’s eye mix the colors as opposed to mixing the paint on the palette or canvas. With a medium like Liquin by Winsor & Newton speeds drying time while thinning the paint allowing layers to be built without waiting a couple of days for each layer to dry before you apply another layer. Additionally, there are glazing mediums accessible like A conventional medium used for decades by many painters is refined linseed oil, a touch of solvent (typically mineral spirits), and a touch of stand oil, and a touch of Japan or Cobalt Drier These ingredients are blended in a balance to achieve your desired results, like faster drying time, more gloss, etc.. ) Stand oil is merely a thicker linseed oil that can decrease brush strokes and increase gloss. Adding Damar varnish to your mixture also adds gloss and can speed drying time. Damar varnish is made of tree resin and alkyd is a form of synthetic resin.
There are several mediums and I suggest that you try several until you find what works best for your style of painting. Along with those mentioned above are safflower oil, poppy seed oil, and walnut oil.