“Do I Have to Paint With Oils?”


First Oil Painting 002

I had just started taking my upper-division art classes in college. I’d mastered acrylic painting and thought I was pretty hot stuff. I went into my painting class, feeling like I was an expert. The instructor told us we were no longer going to be working with acrylics, that to continue with our path to receiving art degrees we would be moving on to the higher methods of painting, meaning oils. I was offended. I thought it was stupid. Then she put a mask up on the wall, draped it with some cloth, lit it with a lamp and told us to get painting.

Acrylic was so simple. You’d just get it on your brush, paint it, it would dry fast and then you’d move on. I was really upset and confused with oil painting. It felt like I was pushing vaseline around on the canvas with a stick! It didn’t dry, either. Such a frustration! This picture is of that same painting. I eventually swallowed my pride. I realized acrylic painting looked flat and when it dried it went darker than when it was applied. Oil painting, however, has a beautiful luminosity and keeps it’s color. There is such a beauty that oil painting has and acrylic does not. I’m strictly an oil painter now.

Comments on “Do I Have to Paint With Oils?” Leave a Comment

January 28, 2015

Jared @ 10:06 am #

I love oil paints too! You do great work with oil!

Nicole @ 10:09 am #

That turned out great. It is always good to push ourselves sometimes so we can see how awesome we can be. I am proud of your perseverance.

Jennifer @ 10:27 am #

I love the story. I agree that it is good to push ourselves, even if it means we start at the bottom again and have to work our way up. It’s all about getting better at what we love, and putting the work in to get there.

Ann Farnsley @ 10:56 am #

I learned to paint with oils first, & still find them the most versatile & satisfying medium. Luminosity is the keyword.

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