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Dull and shiney surface on almost finished painting


(Patricia J. Powers) #1

I took my time with a small painting recently on Ampersand Gessobord. I used walnut oil with my oil paint at one sitting and Utrecht Oil Painting Medium at another sitting…and then there are places on the surface that don’t have any medium whatsoever, so they are rather dull. What can I do to even out this painting?


(Tom Mather) #2

You can fix the dull spots by “oiling out” the painting. In a small jar, mix together equal parts of linseed oil, odorless mineral spirits and alkyd medium. Apply lightly to the entire surface of the painting, particularly the dull areas, then wipe off any excess. It might require a second application in areas that are very dull or sunken in. The alkyd medium is optional if you don’t use one, but it helps the mixture dry faster.

Some colors are more prone to sinking in, such as burnt umber, as well as different surfaces. Ampersand panels are very prone to having dull spots, in my experience, but respond well to oiling out.


(Jens Ole Olsen) #3

If it is possible I would also use linseed oil and alkyd, I use a commercial one for boats.
I am not sure it is good idea to use the liquins,

The problem is, if there were not medium enough from the beginning, then there is a big risk to disturb the layer.

The times I had the problem, I used a shellack solution not too strong and very fast and lightly apply a thin layer with the side of my hand avoiding not to push into the surface.

It might be possible to use an acrylic binder diluted in the same way.


(Gary Huntress) #4

Hi Patricia. Here’s a youtube vid from the folks at Winsor Newton demonstrating the oiling out process (I hope I did this right)

[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z41GLz3OJ9I]


(Patricia J. Powers) #5

Thank you Tom, Jens, and Gary. That video was very good. I’m not in a rush to do this so I will let my painting dry a couple more days.


(Terry Aley) #6

Varnishing the painting should even out everything.


(Patricia J. Powers) #7

Thank you, I’ll certainly give that a try.


(Tom Mather) #8

You shouldn’t paint over varnish, however.


(Patricia J. Powers) #9

Thanks Tom. I appreciate your comment.


(Patricia Ann Rizzo) #10

I would just varnish it with a good varnish for oils. Even out the shine and great protection for the painting


(Patricia J. Powers) #11

Thanks for commenting Patricia.


(Vana Meyers) #12

Hi Patricia, a lady from Gamblin helped me rescue a portrait by telling me to oil out with a solution of 50% Galkyd and 50%Gamsol (1:1). They also have a wonderful video on oiling out. This worked beautifully and after it dried I was able to varnish. It took about 24 hours for the oiling out to finish drying due to Florida humidity. I just recently oiled out several other paintings using this method and again it worked great. I have watched the Winsor-Newton and the Gamblin videos and recommend you do the same. They are both very helpful. I am sure the Winsor-Newton method works also.


(Patricia J. Powers) #13

Thanks Vana. I did look at the video…very helpful!