Making Graphite Oil Paint

Making Graphite Oil Paint

Watch this video on YouTube   Making Graphite Oil Paint — The Alchemical Journey Series — by Damian Osborne   1 | What is graphite actually? 2 | Can you mix graphite and oil paint 3 | When was graphite first used as an art medium? 4 | How does graphite black oil paint compare with other black pigments? 5 | How do you make graphite black oil paint? 6 | Did any of the Old Masters use graphite oil paint?   Continuing with my handmade paint series, The Alchemical Journey, I decided to experiment with graphite oil paint. Graphite black…

A Little Nocturne Oil Painting

A Little Nocturne Oil Painting

Click to view the painting.   A Little Nocturne Oil Painting by Damian Osborne   Light the scented candles, put on that old Chopin CD and pour another glass of red. I’m in the mood for a little nocturne oil painting. This scene made a very strong impression on me as I regarded the crescent moon hanging like a shining eyelash between the mountain buttresses one evening. It’s a little corner of wildness, this exposed section of the peninsula at the end of the mountain range, with incessant gale-force winds from the sea, slamming against the rock faces and my back.…

Underpainting Stage for a Self-Portrait

Underpainting Stage for a Self-Portrait

Watch this video on YouTube Underpainting Stage for a Self-Portrait — ‘Nigredo’  by Damian Osborne   1 | How do you begin the underpainting stage of a portrait painting? 2 | Can you oil paint directly over charcoal? 3 | Making my own oil paint from Bloodstone   In this self-portrait oil painting, I start with a charcoal drawing, then make my own oil paint from bloodstone for the underpainting stage of the painting. This is a self-portrait oil painting called ‘Nigredo’. It comes from a pretty dark place. Nigredo is the first stage of the alchemist’s journey. The putrification. Annihilation.…

How to Create More Meaningful Art — Part 2

How to Create More Meaningful Art — Part 2

  How to Create More Meaningful Art — Part 2 by Damian Osborne     7 | Recording and painting your feelings — keeping a journal   8 | Get deep — explore your shadows   9 | Read soul-enriching books — the works of the visionaries and great thinkers 10 | Spend time communicating with nature 11 | Be comfortable with being alone 12 | Think about what is most precious to you   In case you missed it, this is a continuation from How to Create More Meaningful Art — Part 1 on habits I’ve been trying to stick…

How to Create More Meaningful Art — Part 1

How to Create More Meaningful Art — Part 1

  How to Create More Meaningful Art — Part 1 by Damian Osborne   1 | Getting serious about developing your artistic soul 2 | Draw in your sketchbook everyday 3 | Paint/draw from your own life 4 | Meditate and pray daily as an artist 5 | Close your social media accounts and reduce screen time (digital detox) 6 | Record and draw from your dreams   There’s usually a point in an artist’s life when they feel the compulsion to take stock of themselves and of their work, and to create more meaningful art.  Life is full of endless…

Making Your Own Canvas Panels for Oil Painting

Making Your Own Canvas Panels for Oil Painting

Watch this video on YouTube   Making Your Own Canvas Panels for Oil Painting by Damian Osborne   Making your own canvas panels is a great cost-saver when it comes to being a painter. This is how I make mine with my own homemade primer. Before the invention of oil painting on sailcloth canvas, artists during and before the Renaissance Period commonly painted on solid wooden panels. These were carefully selected pieces of hardwood, and painstakingly sized with hide glues and primed with gypsum or lead-based primers, in preparation for egg tempera or oil painting. Today, making your own canvas panels…

Best Ideas for Oil Painting Every Painter Should Try

Best Ideas for Oil Painting Every Painter Should Try

Watch this video on YouTube Best Ideas for Oil Painting Every Painter Should Try by Damian Osborne   So, you’re wondering what you should paint? Here are some of my personal favourite ideas for oil painting: 1 | Landscape painting 2 | Seascape painting 3 | Still life painting 4 | Figure painting 5 | Self-portrait painting 6 | Painting portraits of your friends and family 7 | Painting animals 8 | Dreams, fantasy, mythological, allegorical and imaginary painting Throughout the history of painting, artists have found inspiration for their art from these universal and personal subjects.     What were…

Alla Prima Still Life Painting Demo

Alla Prima Still Life Painting Demo

Watch this video on YouTube   Alla Prima Still Life Painting Demo by Damian Osborne   Painting an alla prima still life is a really valuable exercise for any artist. For this still life painting demo, I set up some apples in an African bowl. The painting was another still life commission for a collector in the U.K. In my last post, I showed how to stretch a canvas for painting. I showed how to make a strainer frame and talked about the differences between a strainer and stretcher frame, and the pros and cons of each for stretching canvas. I…

How to Stretch a Canvas for Painting — the Easy Way!

How to Stretch a Canvas for Painting — the Easy Way!

Watch this video on YouTube   How to Stretch a Canvas for Painting — the Easy Way! by Damian Osborne   As an artist, knowing how to stretch a canvas is important. Not only does it save you a lot of money. But by stretching and priming your own canvases, you’ll gain a better understanding of your materials, and the possible defects of painting in general. You’ll also learn of the various options available regarding painting supports. And, by stretching your own canvas, you’ll be assured of the quality of the materials at each step, since you’re the one who decides…

Weird Questions Beginner Oil Painters Ask

Weird Questions Beginner Oil Painters Ask

  Weird Questions Beginner Oil Painters Ask by Damian Osborne   1 | When does one do underpainting? And is that synonymous with a wash or blocking in? 2 | If you do an underpainting, what medium do you prefer to use? 3 | How many layers of oil paint can you pile on top of the underpainting? 4 | Do you paint an oil painting in subsequent layers by just adding more oil? Or is it more paint? 5 | Can I use acrylic under an oil painting? 6 | What is the difference between alkyd medium and linseed…

Alla Prima Portrait Study in Oils

Alla Prima Portrait Study in Oils

Watch this video on YouTube   Alla Prima Portrait Study in Oils by Damian Osborne   In this alla prima portrait study demo, I did an oil sketch of my sister in one sitting, using a limited palette. This quick oil portrait was done in my sketchbook, painting it wet-on-wet. I primed the paper with a basic white acrylic primer in order to paint my oil portrait studies. This is a great way to practice alla prima portrait painting in oils without the expense of canvas. Generally, an alla prima portrait sketch uses a limited palette (the Zorn Palette is…

How to Paint Flowers in Oils

How to Paint Flowers in Oils

Watch this video on YouTube   How to Paint Flowers in Oils by Damian Osborne   It’s time to paint flowers! I had these beautiful and exotic Amaryllis flowers from a house warming gift. They were blooming nicely. So I decided to paint them. The painting is a Christmas present for my mother-in-law. Flowers are easy to paint in oils since you can set them right up in front of you and paint them from life. If you’re new to oil painting, make sure you quickly read Beginning an Oil Painting – My 5 rules before you start. This is…

Painting the Figure – Part 1

Painting the Figure – Part 1

Watch this video on YouTube   Painting the Figure – Part 1 by Damian Osborne   This painting is actually part of my Siren Series. I have broken up this figure painting demo into 4 parts. So stay tuned for explanations of the various stages.    How do you start a figure painting with charcoal? Vine charcoal is the best medium for starting a figure painting because it’s easy to wipe away and make corrections to your drawing. It is also perfect for drawing on canvas. Unlike graphite, it is soft, and does not create the typical graphite sheen that…

Painting the Imprimatura

Painting the Imprimatura

Watch this video on YouTube   Painting the Imprimatura by Damian Osborne   Ok, so I’ve just completed the burnt umber imprimatura or brunaille. This is the second part of the figure painting I’m working on, called ‘Transformation’. If you missed the first part, go back and view the first video where I do the underdrawing. It shows how I begin the painting by toning the canvas and drawing the figure with charcoal.   What is the imprimatura in oil painting? Imprimatura means ‘First Painting Layer’ in Italian. Having a charcoal drawing on the canvas helps to get the design…

Charcoal Underdrawing for an Oil Painting

Charcoal Underdrawing for an Oil Painting

Watch this video on YouTube   Charcoal Underdrawing for an Oil Painting by Damian Osborne   What is a charcoal underdrawing? A charcoal underdrawing is the first stage in traditional oil painting. In the classical method, doing a charcoal underdrawing on the toned canvas helps to quickly visualize the placement, composition and proportions of the subject before starting the painting stage. Using vine charcoal, it’s easy to wipe off and rework sections of the underdrawing. I love the tactile feeling of working with charcoal; smudging and blending with my whole hand, erasing with a rag, drawing with my fingers. Stepping…

Beginning an Oil Painting – My 5 rules

Beginning an Oil Painting – My 5 rules

  Beginning an Oil Painting – My 5 Rules by Damian Osborne   Before even beginning an oil painting, I have 5 rules as an artist for this year. Hopefully I will maintain them strictly for the rest of my life. Art isn’t easy. While you don’t really have a boss to report to for work, it can definitely be exhausting to keep pushing yourself. The many voices inside can gang up on you. Sometimes you have to dig really deep to get working on that painting, to find your inspiration, to give your best 100% of the time. To…

Painting the Traditional Way – Part 2 – The Underdrawing

Painting the Traditional Way – Part 2 – The Underdrawing

  Painting the Traditional Way – Part 2 – The Underdrawing by Damian Osborne   After sizing, priming and toning the canvas, it’s time to begin the underdrawing! If you missed the first part, just go back and check it out quickly. In the previous chapter, I show how I prepare the canvas for the underdrawing stage.  I was commissioned to create an oil painting of a woman bathing in a tropical mountain pool. A waterfall and lush green foliage add to the peaceful ambience. The painting was destined for Australia, to a natural health clinic. So I wanted to…

Painting the Traditional Way – Part 1

Painting the Traditional Way – Part 1

  Painting the Traditional Way – Part 1 by Damian Osborne   When painting the traditional way, the most important thing to consider is that patience, finesse and forethought should be part of every stage of the painting. Cutting corners jeopardizes the whole, as well as your reputation as an artist. There are actually many ways to paint and I don’t always follow a set path. But this post is about a basic method that I used to build up this oil painting.   What is the old master painting method? The old masters did not necessarily use a single…