5 Secrets You Didn't Know About Oil Paintings

by Marshall | Oil Paintings

You may have heard of oil paintings, but you might not know about their fascinating history. They are a type of painting that is created by using oils as the pigment for the paints, and they can be found in many different styles all around the world. This article will provide 5 secrets about this type of artwork that you may not have known.


We all know that oil painting is an art form, but the process of producing the paintings can be fascinating as well. Oil paints are made from linseed oils and other materials that create a medium for pigments. These ingredients are mixed to produce paints that are then applied onto the surface of a canvas or panel using brushes. The oil provides an even coating on surfaces which makes it easy to manipulate light with brushstrokes. Painting techniques such as impasto, scumbling, and glazing are used to create different effects to evoke moods or make viewers feel certain emotions. Moreover, here are the five secrets you didn't know about oil paintings.

1. Oil paintings are not always paintings.

Oil paintings can also be sculptures, drawings, and printed works. Oil painting started in the medieval period as a way to cover large spaces that couldn't be done with tempera paints or frescoes. It was used on ceilings of churches because it stays wet longer which allowed painters more time to work without worrying about destroying their masterpiece when they stepped back down from the scaffolding. Some oil paintings were even created around this time using egg yolks mixed with pigment instead of linseed oil so artists could have an easier medium for working at heights. Later on during the Renaissance era, oils became popular for portraits due to how easily they blended into one another, adding depth and dimensionality seen in the Mona Lisa.

2. The value of the oil paintings is determined by their age and maturity.

Oil paintings that are 100 years old or older are the most valuable. Paintings painted between 50-100 years ago can be worth double, depending on how mature they are. For instance, if you were to find a painting of an adult woman with realistic features and flawless skin hanging in your attic, it would likely make for some serious money at auction because this is what people considered attractive back then. However, If you found one of little Johnny playing baseball in his backyard when he was 11 years old, you doubt any art gallery professional would buy it from you let alone pay big bucks for it. On the contrary, It's just not worthy enough unless it's really special like Van Gogh's work which may fetch you a few million dollars.

3. Oil paints were first used between the 5th & 9th centuries to decorate shields and other objects in western Afghanistan. 

The art form of oil painting originated in the middle east and was used to coat metals with a thin layer of gold, silver, or bronze. Many different types of materials were then engraved into these painted surfaces such as stones, ivory, wood, and even glass which later inspired artists during the medieval period when they started coating objects with oils using wooden panels instead. This practice became more common throughout Europe from Italy all up to Russia where painters created beautiful works that would be hung on walls for centuries to come. Artists like Leonardo da Vinci experimented with this medium by creating small-scale paintings out of linseed oil mixed with pigment, eventually paving a path for future generations who have continued working within its limitations ever since.

By Dru Bloomfield - https://www.flickr.com/photos/athomeinscottsdale/3836187025/in/photostream/, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=95427764

4. An artist's studio was once a laboratory before the nineteenth century.

During the Renaissance era, artists would hire other artisans to help them grind pigments into a fine powder and create their paint mixtures. This was considered a delicate process requiring many different stages for oils to dry properly without going rancid before they could be used on panels or canvases. These old-fashioned techniques were so complex that even Mona Lisa's original artist tried his hand at creating paints from scratch during his later years but failed miserably due to how temperamental they can be when left out overnight, leaving the final work looking completely flat with no sense of depth.

5. Oil paints were available in a metal tube, pre-mixed and ready to use in 1841.

Oil paints were available in a metal tube, pre-mixed and ready to use in 1841. Oil paint tubes are wet oil colors packed into small metal or plastic containers with tight screw caps for easy application on the palette. They allow artists an economical way of buying large amounts of color at one time which can be easily carried around while painting outdoors.

Oil paintings have a long and fascinating history. There's so much to learn about the different types of paints, how they're used by artists from all over the world, and what causes them to become valuable as time goes on. We've shared 5 secrets you might not know about oil painting with you today. If your curiosity is piqued or if this article has taught you something new, please contact us for any questions or comments. Our team would be happy to answer any questions and help guide you in making an informed decision regarding your next purchase of fine art prints.

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