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How Do I Get Oils to Work Like Watercolor Paint?


Question: How Do I Get Oils to Work Like Watercolor Paint?

"How do I get oils to blend and bleed like watercolors? Do I use more linseed oil? I prefer the oils to look like watercolor washes." -- Barbaralilly


You can do this, but be prepared to wait for it to dry!

What makes water colors bleed is a wet-on-wet technique, that is you wet the paper, then thin the paint so it will bleed. Work flat, like watercolor.

You will want to thin the paint with a medium, usually a mixture of thinner and oil. I prefer to buy mine, but a lot of people have their own formulas. Cover your canvas with either linseed oil or something like Liquid Clear (there are several brands).

Then, with thin paint, work it into the oil on your canvas. It will not bleed actually as watercolors, and you may have to tilt the canvas around so gravity can work.

You can also use that plasticized paper, Yupo, and blow it around with a straw after you have thinned, but be sure it is someplace it can stay, if you try to move it, it will run.

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