Workshop Supplies List and More
updated Nov 8, 2011
1) Photo or photos to use as a subject matter for making your workshop painting. Or work from the one I will supply. I commonly use a flower from one photo and leaves from another if the main photo is lacking the best composition. You may want to bring a couple of different shots to choose from. Each student will receive one photo of the same flower that will be the subject of my demonstration painting. If they choose, they can paint the same image that I am painting. I will also bring, for each student and myself, a 16x20 inch masonite or hard board panel. We will paint them a middle grey, then the drawing will be applied by the students. I will bring a digital projector for this job. Following me as I demonstrate is recommended. We will be starting the painting with a monochromatic under painting, or grisaille, which is a value painting. This is an ancient technique that is clearly demonstrated at this link: http://www.penroseart.com/vermeer02.htm. I recommend that students go on line to learn more about the approach we will be using. This site also shows the artist using a grid system as a guide for applying the drawing. Here is another good link: http://www.wetcanvas.com/Articles2/3261/292/. In my approach to oil painting, I use a modified glazing technique on top of the grisaille applying both transparent and opaque color. The grisaille needs to be thoughtfully rendered because much of it will show through the paint that is applied on top.
2) If one wishes to use their own image to paint in the workshop, they must bring a masonite panel that is primed with grey acrylic gesso and sanded. I usually draw my image on a surface that is painted a middle grey with acrylic gesso. I like grey similar to the color and value of concrete. It is best to already have the drawing applied to save time. Bring a few extra grey acrylic gessoed masonite panels to practice on. Students who are not advanced painters would profit from bringing a simple floral image to work from. Canvases and canvas boards are also OK but they must be fairly smooth, that’s why a masonite panel is preferred. Acrylic paint or acrylic gesso is good to paint oil paint on top of, but one can not do the reverse --- paint acrylic paint on top of oil paint.
3a) Oil paints, high quality. I use Winsor Newton Artist quality oils or brands that are comparable. I also use Griffin Alkyd paint, made by Winsor Newton, and Di Vinci Alkyd paint, to mix with my oils to achieve a faster drying time. Alkyd paints are totally mixable with oils and are very useful because of their drying speed. They allow one to paint a second coat more quickly, commonly the next day. Because of this, we will be using Alkyd paint quite a bit with the limited time of the workshop. By the way, oil and alkyd paints harden because of oxidation. Sun light (UV light) is a catalyst which speeds up the hardening process. I put my paintings in sun light often. In spite of this, it is common for artists to say that oil paints dry.
3b) This is the minimum list of colors needed for the oils and the alkyd paints: Titanium White, Ivory Black, Cadmium Lemon, Cadmium Yellow medium, Cadmium Red Medium, Permanent Rose, French Ultramarine Blue and Phtalo Blue. With those colors nearly all the colors one wishes to mix can be.
3c) Additional colors: I personally ad to the minimum list: Cadmium Yellow Deep, Cadmium Red Deep, Cadmium Red Light, Dioxazine Purple, Burnt Sienna, Raw Sienna, Yellow Ochre and Brunt Umber. One can add to that list what ever other colors they wish.
4a) Acrylic paints, high quality (for painting an under painting.) Again, Winsor Newton artist quality or comparable, such as Golden or Graham. Liquitex is not a quality brand in acrylic paint but their oil paints are good. I will supply the grey for painting the panels.
4b) The Acrylic colors need are: Carbon Black and Titanium White
5) Brushes: My favorite Oil and acrylic painting brushes are the Flats, brights and filberts #2. #4, #6. 90% of the painting I do is with a Silver Brush Grand Prix #4 Flat or Bright Hog bristle brush. A superb alternative is the Robert Simmons Signet (hog bristle) filberts and flats. Also, the Connoisseur or Princeton brand synthetic brushes in the same sizes. Synthetic brushes are best for painting acrylic paint. There are many other comparable high quality brushes. If I am making a large painting, I will use larger brushes. A cup or jar for holding brushes is also needed.
6) Pallet. I use a glass pallet. I heat glue the glass on to a piece of masonite or Gator board. The masonite is painted a middle grey, about the color and value of concrete. Mine is about 11x16. A pallet knife is also needed. I use a scrapper which holds a razor blade for cleaning the pallet. Hardware stores have them. I don’t use a white pallet. Wooden pallets are OK but not as good as glass.
7) Maroger Medium. This medium is often called Ruben’s Jelly and is believed to be the medium Rubens used. I make my own but you can but it from www.oldmastersmaroger.com or call: (505) 758-2382. I will bring some extra for those who have trouble getting their own.
8) Scott Shop Towels, the blue ones. No other brand will work for paper towels. This is an important tool in the painting that I do.
9) Odorless mineral spirits (paint thinner) and cup for thinning oil paint, and cleaning brushes. I do not use turpentine at all except for the small amount that is in Maroger Medium. Do not bring turpentine. It is much more toxic than mineral spirits, stinks and does nothing better than mineral spirits.
10) Easels and lighting will be supplied by the school, but it is common for the supplied lighting to be poor. I bring my own goose neck lamps with regular incandescent bulbs so that I can have good lighting on my work area. Good lighting makes a huge difference. If you can manage to bring lights, do.
11) Petroleum Jelly. At the end of the day, I coat my oil painting brushes with this to keep them from drying out. The Jelly comes out easily with paint thinner the next day.
12) Hard lead (6H or so) Pencil, eraser, and sharpener.
13) Masking tape, magnifying glass, and fine tweezers for removing hairs or debris
14) Clamp for holding your photo on the easel
15) Bring any item that you like to use that I have forgot to mention in this list.