ART MATERIALS

This is a list of some of the tools and ma­ter­i­als I use in my every­day paint­ing en­deavors. They have worked well for me over the years and I per­son­ally re­com­mend them, but I have no fin­an­cial re­la­tion­ship with these com­pan­ies.

As a ve­gan, I try to pro­mote kind­ness to an­im­als, so for me per­son­ally it’s im­port­ant to choose cruelty-free and en­vir­on­ment­ally friendly products. I have re­spect for all an­im­als and try my best to not cause harm to our furry, scaly and feath­ery friends. The ma­ter­i­als lis­ted are there­fore, to the best of my know­ledge, free from an­im­al products and tox­ic heavy metals.

OIL PAINTS

My stand­ard palette of oil paint con­sists of the fol­low­ing pig­ments: Ivory Black, Burnt Si­enna, Yel­low Ochre, Brown Ochre, Ox­ide of Chro­mi­um, Olive Green, Vene­tian Red, Cap­ut Mor­tuum Vi­ol­et, French Ul­tra­mar­ine and Ti­tani­um White.

I prefer artist qual­ity paints made by Rem­brandt, Gamblin and Win­sor and New­ton. They all have high pig­ment load and firm yet smooth con­sist­ency.

CANVASES

Ever since I star­ted paint­ing in oils, I’ve stayed true to Claes­sens, a highly re­garded Bel­gian com­pany and a fa­vour­ite among many European paint­ers. They have been in busi­ness since 1906 and gen­er­ally make canvases of su­perb qual­ity. I have a few fa­vour­ites, ran­ging from the finely weaved #01 to the rough #029. I prime these my­self with ac­ryl­ic primer made by Golden.

BRUSHES

I use a wide as­sort­ment of brushes of dif­fer­ent sizes and shapes. I’m al­ways look­ing for new ways to ap­ply paint, so the quest for new and ex­cit­ing brushes is a nev­er-end­ing story. A lot of the time I also paint with fin­gers, rags, spat­u­las and knives to achieve cer­tain tex­tur­al or visu­al ef­fects.

There are a lot of great syn­thet­ic al­tern­at­ives to choose from these days, so there’s no need for nat­ur­al hair like hog, sable, badger or goat. My fa­vour­ite brands are da Vinci and Rose­mary and Co.

For paint­ing knives, I prefer the Itali­an brand RGM. They have lacquered, well-bal­anced handles and they last a mil­lion years. A short-bladed can­vas scraper is a little known but in­dis­pens­able tool, per­fect for cor­rect­ing mis­takes and re­du­cing tex­ture when needed.

VARNISHES

In between lay­ers of paint, in or­der to bring back the bright­ness and vi­va­city of the oils, I use a tech­nique called oil­ing out. After a couple of weeks, when the paint­ing is dry to the touch, I ap­ply a thin coat of re­touch­ing var­nish. Be­fore I de­liv­er a paint­ing to a cus­tom­er or a gal­lery, I typ­ic­ally ap­ply a fi­nal coat of var­nish made by Gamblin or Win­sor and New­ton.

OIL MEDIUMS

I keep my me­di­um re­cipes pretty straight­for­ward. Most of the time, I use a simple “half and half” for­mula of lin­seed oil and odour­less min­er­al spir­it made by Fär­griket. For heavy im­pasto pas­sages and large back­ground areas, I usu­ally add a rap­id-dry­ing al­kyd me­di­um such as Li­quin.