Dedham Guild Member since 2011
Continuing on from Part Four - Our color mixtures for these steps is going to be Van
Dyke Bown with a touch of Cerulean Blue. This color should be a dark "greenish-grey"
You'll want to this this mixture a bit by adding a drop or two of a painting medium.
"Medium" is the term used for the fluid that surrounds the pigment and facilitates its
application to a surface. In the case of oil paints, the "medium" consists of a "binder"
and a "thinner" and to a lesser degree, "additives" such as varnishes, resins, drying
agents, textual materials. Classifications of the "mediums" are:
Binders: The binder is the most important element in a the medium as this is what adheres
to the painting surface, holding the particles of pigment within it and drying to form the
paint film. Oil paints, by definition, have a drying oil as the binder and the tubes of paint
that we buy contain the pigment already ground in just enough binder to secure its
storage and ease its transfer from tube to palette. In some cases, you'll need to add
additional binder to the paint on the palette to make them workable with a brush. The
most common binders include: linseed oil, raw linseed oil, refined, cold-pressed and
sun-bleached linseed oils, walnut, poppy and safflower oils.
I use the refined linseed oil. Been in use since the eighteeth century, refined linseed
oil is the standard binder in most tubed paints.
Thinners: If paint is diluted with oil alone, it may wrinkle, become yellowed, or take
too long to dry - so a "thinner" is sometimes mixed with the binder to help aid the flow
of paint. The thinner does not remain in the paint film as it evaporates from the surface.
Common thiners are: distilled turpentine, Artist's mineral (white) spirits, and odorless
thinners, often called "Turpenoids."
Once the paint and medium is mixed, we'll use the corner of a #2 Fan Brush to "block in"
the formation of the foreground trees and banks below the distant tree-line. (See Photo 1)
Moving forward in the painting, continue "blocking in" the remainder of the landmasses
and bushes. (See Photo 2)
At this stage of the painting, we're not too worried about "details" as when we come back in the finale, Part Six, our next layers of paint will bring this "blocking in" segmentto life. You'll see that with a few simple brushstrokes, we can add an amazing amount of details to complete our painting. Our color palette for Part Six will include all the Cadmium Yellows, Burnt Sienna, Sap Green, White, and of course, Cerulean Blue.