How Do I Practice Oil Painting? (10 Actionable Tips)

If you are going to learn oil painting for the first time then the techniques used can be overwhelming for you. Though the ways of learning to use different types of paints are different but by nature oil paints are exceptionally difficult.

An artist can improve his painting skills by using various techniques. In this write-up, we are going to discuss the techniques to practice oil painting.

The tips discussed here under can give a new life to your oil painting skills by changing the methods used by you. You can start practicing oil painting by following the 10 basic techniques described briefly in this article. These techniques will help in making you more confident while making an oil painting.

Grip The Paintbrush Accurately

You can maximize your control on your paintbrush by holding it correctly. While painting an oil painting an artist holds the paintbrush by using different types of grips. But the best method to hold a paintbrush is that it should allow you to make your strokes more sensitive and flexible.

You should hold the handle of the brush far away from its tip as much as you can. Initially, it can be an uncomfortable situation for you but it allows you to paint not only from your wrist but with your entire arm as you will be able to control your brush more effectively.

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You should also know how to choose the right brush and how to keep them clean before starting to practice oil painting.

Master Your Style To Use Brush

You can improve the versatility of your oil painting by using your brush from all angles. While using their brush people usually forget that their brush has only two orientations or sides.

Every brush can be used on its side to draw sharp strokes or lines whereas its flat side can be used to make wider strokes on the canvas.

You can make your oil paintings more versatile at a faster speed by learning how to use the orientation of your brush to control your lines.

Use Or Apply Variable Pressure When Painting

You can change the texture of your oil painting by using different types of pressure on your paintbrush. While using your paintbrush you should not hold it with heavy hands.

The stroke of the brush can make or break the perfection of your oil painting by applying different pressures on it. Your paint will create ridges on the sides of stroke of the brush if heavy pressure is applied in the brush.

You should know the effect of heavy, light and medium strokes on the canvas so that you can get desired results by applying the right amount of pressure on your brush.

Use The Benefits Of The Medium

You can amazingly modify your painting by using the right medium as you can use various types of mediums while using oil paint.

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You can mix solvent to the paint to modify the behaviour and texture of your paint. You can make your oil paint transparent and flat by using a lot of mediums but you can improve the consistency of the paint by using medium a little.

Ensure Purity Of Your Colors

In order to keep your colors pure you should use clean brushes. While using a brush to take paint from your palette you should be careful as you can taint the colors you are going to use by using an unclean brush.

You should clean your brushes regularly between the strokes as well as after finishing the painting to maintain the intensity of the colors taken out of their respective tubes.

If Possible Use Mixture Of Two Colors

You can use more vibrant colors on your canvas by mixing a few paints together. You can create less intense and dull mixture of colors by taking some color from every pile on the palette.

Initially you should try to mix white and two colors. However, you can take benefits of mix more colors later on as your knowledge about using different colors increases with time.

Avoid Mixing Colors Too Much

While mixing colors you should mix as much as you need instead of mixing overly as it will waste your paints.

You can create interesting colors to add vibrancy to your painting by initially mixing colors of different consistencies. But before applying the color you have created by combining different colors you should mix two colors as much as you need.

The interesting color you have made will become uninteresting if you will mix two colors more than necessary.

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Avoid Holding Back The Oil Paint

To understand your vision you must use the right amount of paint. To get the desired effects on the painting sometimes you may need thick strokes whereas sometimes a thin stroke.

So to create the stroke of desired consistency you must ensure to use adequate amount of paint. You should not hold back the paint to use it on your painting later on.

You should make the mixture again whenever required instead of moving the brush constantly around the pile of paint on your palette.

Try To Use Wet Versus Dry Brush On Wet

You can take advantage of using wet versus dry brush. While making an oil painting you should keep in mind that on a wet surface you can paint directly or put paint over it after allowing it to dry.

When you will use wet paint on wet surface then they will blend on the canvas which can be good to reduce or increase the effect of paint used. But you can improve the texture of the paint by painting with a dry brush.

Use The Palette Knife

Sometimes you can improve the looks of your oil painting even without using a brush. Normally people use palette knife for mixing paints but sometimes it can also be used for making interesting strokes more effectively.

This knife can be used instead of a brush to make random and textural strokes on the painting.

Thus, by following the tips provided in this write-up you can easily practice oil painting as well as improve your painting skills.

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