Saturday, April 6, 2013

Oil Paint Was Made from Plants -- History

History of making oil paint from plants

Oil paint is a type of paint oil paintings which consists of color tones stopped in a drying out oil. A drying out oil is the one which hardens to a tough, solid film after its exposed to air. The oil hardens as a result of chemical reaction between the components and the presence of oxygen. Drying out oils are a key component of oil paint for painting. This oil comes from different kinds of plants.

What plants were used in the past to make oil paint?

There are many kinds of oils that were used in the past for oil paint. A few examples of oils that were employed by the artists are linseed oil, frankincense oil, Tung oil, perilla oil, poppyseed oil, walnut oil and safflower oil.

Linseed Oil

The plant Linaceae is the source of linseed oil. Linseed oil is produced from the Linaceae plant and a clear to becomes yellowish colored oil is obtained. Sometimes certain solvents are added to it in order to decrease the drying out time of the oil. In the field of oil painting, using linseed oil was a giant leap. But as time has passed and new techniques have been found, using linseed oil has dropped. Mainly, because of the artificial materials introduced which have the ability to resist yellowing. In Modern & Summary Oil Paintings, they still use linseed oil.

Frankincense Oil

Frankincense Landscape Oil Painting is a fragrant resin. This is obtained from the genus Boswellia trees and shrubs. The will often bark of the tree is peeled off and a milky white liquid is exuded from it which hardens on its contact with air. Oil is then extracted from these solidified resins by sauna distillation. Due to the difference in soil and climate conditions, many kinds of species are found. Among all the species, the opaque resins are believed to be the best kind. These are found in Oman, Yemen and the North shoreline of Somalia.

Poppyseed Oil

Poppyseed oil is obtained form the small, dark seed of opium poppy, commonly known as the poppy flower. Although the poppyseed oil is used for many purposes like cooking oil and moisturizers, the foremost usage is in the production of paints. Poppyseed oil takes more time to dry as compared to linseed oil. That is the reason why poppyseed oil is not used as a ground layer for painting.

Walnut Oil

As the name indicates, walnut oil comes from walnuts. Walnut oil dries very quickly and it also does not give a yellow shade. For this reason, it was very popular amongst the Renaissance painters. It is considered to be a good oil paint thinner cleaning brushes for the same reason. Now the demand of walnut oil has decreased with the passage of time. This is because, walnut oil is considered to be of lesser quality than that of linseed oil by some people and also, the stock of walnut oil may go south if not kept by care.

Safflower Oil

Safflower is a plant Sea and Shore Oil Painting having spiny leaves and bears red or becomes yellowish flowers on an upright and stiff stem. The height of the plant is between 30 to a hundred and fifty cm. Safflower has been used for edible oil produced from its seed, coloring and flavor of foods, and medicines. The safflower oil, used as edible oil, is also used for painting and is sometimes used instead of linseed oil mainly because it does not give the yellow shade as that of linseed oil.

All the above mentioned oils have been used in the past by artists for oil works of art. Now, these oil paints are being used in modern summary oil works of art and decorative modern works of art. Considering the different properties of these oils and the desired effect for the painting, different oil paints may be used in the same painting.

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