5 Tips on Quickening the Drying Time of Oil Painting

fish kiss-

One of the biggest challenges for oil painting is learning and understanding drying time. Since water color and acrylic paint literally take minutes to dry. Oil paints can take days. The fun part about oil painting is creating the depth and the richness in color.Oil painting is probably one of the most versatile mediums and it's the essentially painting in layers.

Here are a few inside tips to quicken drying time, especially if you are just learning the medium. I have tried countless of different ways in speeding up the drying time, including sticking a painting in a oven (not recommended) It was a long time ago but I don't think it really helped and I have read horror stories of paintings turning out brown.

 1. Paint Alla Prima. Are we getting fancy, with the terminology? It basically means painting, wet on top of wet. Famous artists, that use this technique are Monet, Van Gogh and Bob Ross. The trick with this technique is painting in thinner layers and using Terpenoid to thin out the paint. By thinning out your layers with solvent, it will greatly help your drying time. A great tip is starting with a wash (similar to water color) and then painting into that wash.

 2. Use less Linseed Oil or whatever stand oil you are using. The oil you are using is to help the flow of the paint should be used sparingly. It takes practice but try not using any at all and slowly incorporating it in your painting. When using the oil dab your brush lightly on a paper towel and then just drop the tip into the oil. A little goes a long way. You will torture yourself with a painting that never dries. Also remember that when you buy a tube of paint, the paint is usually premixed with linseed oil.

 3. Use a alkyd or liquin. Lots of manufacters make different types of mediums to help quicken drying time. This does greatly help quicken drying time, but it does thicken the paint. In a separate little container put a a cap full of alkyd and a cap full of turpenoid with a ratio of 50/50. Before putting your brush in the oil paint- dip your brush into the mixture. Favorite brand for alkyd is Gamblin's.

 4. Place the painting in a well circulated,dark and non humid room. Low moisture is key because you want your paint to oxidize.

 5. Skip the canvas. Paint on paper. Oil painters are going to hate me but there are mixed media paper that can hold oil paint with out wrinkling or muddying the paint. It's a great way to practice and if you love something you make- you can still put it into a frame. My favorite paper is Aquapaper by Bee Paper.

Want to read more tips on oil painting? click here.

The art (the best part) is part of my making art everyday project and this is day 155. To read more about this awesome project click here.

1 comment

Megan said...

Hi! Thank you for this post! I looked for that paper that you recommend, but I can't seem to locate Aquapaper on their website. Can you give me a link to the direct product that you like?

Thank you! I think your work is wonderful and I find you so inspiring!

Megan Bauer