7 Secrets You Didn't Know About Oil On Canvas Art (2024)



ArtistsPaintingArt Furnishing

AWAE2023CatalogsClient InstallationsBlogVideos


Do you love the look of oil on canvas art, but don't know how to create it yourself? In this article, we will share 7 secrets that you didn't know about creating oil on canvas art. We will also provide tips and tricks for achieving the perfect finish. So, whether you are a beginner or an experienced artist, this article is for you!

1. The Right Supplies Make All The Difference: One of the most important secrets to creating oil on canvas art is having the right supplies. Invest in quality materials and tools, such as high-quality oil paints, primed canvases, and good-quality brushes. This will ensure that your work looks professional and lasts longer.

2. Prep Your Canvas: Before you start painting, it's important to prep your canvas properly. Start by sanding the canvas lightly with a fine-grit sandpaper to make sure it is smooth. Then apply two coats of gesso primer to even out any bumps or irregularities in the surface of the canvas so that it is ready for painting.

3. Take Time To Mix Your Paints: Take the time to properly mix your paints and experiment with different colors. This will ensure that you get the desired color and texture when painting on canvas.

4. Know Your Brushes: Different brushes are suited for different purposes, so it's important to understand the characteristics of each type before using them. For instance, flat brushes are great for creating broad strokes while filbert or round brushes are perfect for details.

5. Understand Underpainting: One of the secrets behind beautiful oil paintings is underpainting. Start by sketching out a rough outline of your artwork in pencil and then applying a thin layer of paint to fill in the details and create a base for your painting prior to adding more layers of paint.

6. Use The Right Amount Of Paint: Applying too much paint to your canvas can cause it to become thick and heavy, while also taking longer to dry. It's important to be mindful of how much paint you are using and spread it out evenly with a brush or palette knife so that the painting looks uniform.

7. Don't Be Afraid To Experiment: The best way to learn how to create oil on canvas art is by experimenting with different techniques and tools until you find what works for you. So don't be afraid to take risks and try something new! With these tips in mind, you'll be sure to create beautiful artwork in no time.

Tips And Tricks For The Perfect Finish On Oil Painting

  • Prepare The Surface: Oil paints work best on a primed, smooth canvas. Sand your canvas lightly to ensure no bumps or ridges will disrupt the painting process.
  • Choose Your Color Scheme: Carefully consider the colors and shades you’ll use before diving into painting. This will help you create a cohesive, visually pleasing piece in the end.
  • Layer Your Paint: Oil paints take longer to dry than other mediums, so it’s important to begin with thin layers and gradually build up to thicker coats of paint with more detail as you go along. This will allow each layer of paint to dry and properly cure without smudging or affecting other areas of the painting.
  • Take Your Time: Working with oil paints requires patience and an eye for detail. The longer you work on each layer, the more polished and professional-looking your painting will be in the end.
  • Finish It Off: Once you’ve completed all the details of your oil painting, use a high-quality varnish to seal and protect the paint from dust and dirt. This will also give it that extra glossy sheen you’re looking for!

With these tips in mind, you should be well on your way to creating a perfect finish!

Now that you know the secrets to creating oil on canvas art, it's time to put them into practice! If you are a beginner, we recommend trying out one of our easy tutorials. And if you are an experienced artist, we hope that these tips and tricks will help you create even more beautiful paintings.

Are You Looking For Oil On Canvas Art To Complement Your Home?

The Marshall Gallery, located in Scottsdale’s Historic Arts District, has been the center of contemporary art since its founding in 1998. Boasting a collection of paintings, sculptures, and exquisite glass pieces, the gallery hosts several exhibitions each year plus a biennial glass invitational that attracts top-notch talent. Here you will find exceptional art presented in an open and relaxed gallery space, which is perfect for browsing the ever-changing collection. Explore on your own, or allow our expert art consultants to offer complimentary assistance to find the perfect addition to your own collection. Looking for the perfect piece of art to complement your home’s decor? Visit us in person orbrowse our online art store!

Previous Post


Next Post

Everything on our website is available for purchase.

Shop our online store! Smaller works are available for immediate purchase.

Contact us for more information.

Hours of Operation

Monday - Saturday: 10 a.m - 5:30 p.m.
Thursday: Extended hours from 7 - 9 p.m. for the Scottsdale ArtWalk
Sunday: Closed

Join Our Newsletter

Copyright © 2024, Art Gallery Software by ArtCloudCopyright © 2024, Art Gallery Software by ArtCloud

7 Secrets You Didn't Know About Oil On Canvas Art (2024)


What are some important facts about oil painting? ›

Oil paints don't dry. Instead they harden due to oxidation, usually in about two weeks, and are ready to be varnished in roughly six months. However, sometimes it takes years for an oil painting to fully harden. Traditional oil paints dry by oxidation, when the oil reacts with oxygen in the air.

What are the three rules of oil painting? ›

Firstly, when painting with oils, it is important to adhere to the three rules of oil painting. These are 'fat over lean', 'thick over thin' and 'slow-drying over fast-drying'.

How can you tell if a painting is oil on canvas? ›

Look closely at the surface of the artwork. As prints, oleographs have no texture, and so if it looks as though the artwork has raised brush strokes, and perhaps areas of impasto, that's a good sign that you have an oil painting. A print would not be able to replicate any dimensionality to a painting.

What is the oldest oil on canvas? ›

The Earliest Known Oil Paintings Are from 7th Century Bamiyan, Afghanistan. The earliest examples of oil painting have been traced back to the 7th century.

What makes oil painting special? ›

It has been the most common technique for artistic painting on canvas, wood panel or copper for several centuries, spreading from Europe to the rest of the world. The advantages of oil for painting images include "greater flexibility, richer and denser colour, the use of layers, and a wider range from light to dark".

What are the unique characteristics of oil painting? ›

Oil paintings have several unique characteristics, including the ability to create an opaque quality, which is a thickness in the color that omits the passage of light. Oil paintings can also evoke translucent and transparent qualities. There are several techniques artists use to prepare the canvas for painting.

What is the golden rule of oil painting? ›

You need to follow the golden rule of oil painting: painting "thick on thin" . Each succeeding layer should be slightly "thicker," that is, contain more oil, than the previous one. To achieve this, highly dilute the first layers, with the following ones less and less diluted.

Do you let oil paint dry between layers? ›

Short answer: Yes, when done correctly. Oil paints are different from water based mediums. In water based mediums, the water evaporates and leaves the dried pigment and medium behind. In oil paints the medium crystalizes or “cures”.

Should you let oil paint dry between layers? ›

This makes it immediately clear why a paint layer needs to dry sufficiently before applying the next layer. A layer that has not dried sufficiently is often too elastic for a next layer. And that can also cause cracks to form. It is of course up to the artist how many layers are applied when building up a painting.

Does oil on canvas crack? ›

Often, the cracks form in the weave of the canvas beneath. This can be a perfectly normal characteristic of an antique oil painting and a conservator will not be inclined to alter it unless there are significant areas of paint loss, as the cracks are very thin and contained.

Was Starry Night oil on canvas? ›

The Starry Night (Dutch: De sterrennacht) is an oil-on-canvas painting by the Dutch Post-Impressionist painter Vincent van Gogh painted in June 1889. It depicts the view from the east-facing window of his asylum room at Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, just before sunrise, with the addition of an imaginary village.

How much is oil on canvas worth? ›

The average cost of a canvas oil painting can range anywhere from $100 to over $1,000. The final price depends on several factors, such as the artist's reputation, the size of the painting, and the complexity of the work.

How do you clean a 70 year old oil painting? ›

You can use a clean, soft brush to remove the dust when your oil painting gets dusty. To clean dirt off the surface of your oil painting, wipe it down with a damp, soft cloth. Avoid using harsh chemicals such as detergents, vinegar, or ammonia. Finally, use a dry, clean cloth to wipe away excess moisture.

What are two benefits to painting with oil? ›

Oil paints have a longer drying time, allowing artists more flexibility for blending, shading, and correcting mistakes. Additionally, the smooth and buttery consistency of oil paints makes them easier to work with for many artists.

Who is famous for oil painting? ›

1. Leonardo da Vinci. Leonardo da Vinci's iconic work the 'Mona Lisa' (ca. 1503-1519), hanging in the Louvre in Paris, is his most well-known oil painting.

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Errol Quitzon

Last Updated:

Views: 6023

Rating: 4.9 / 5 (79 voted)

Reviews: 94% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Errol Quitzon

Birthday: 1993-04-02

Address: 70604 Haley Lane, Port Weldonside, TN 99233-0942

Phone: +9665282866296

Job: Product Retail Agent

Hobby: Computer programming, Horseback riding, Hooping, Dance, Ice skating, Backpacking, Rafting

Introduction: My name is Errol Quitzon, I am a fair, cute, fancy, clean, attractive, sparkling, kind person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.