I have noticed that the oil paints today dry much faster on my palette than the oils I used 20 plus years ago. I used to put out a blob of paint and it would usable for a much longer period of time, even if it skinned over. Has anyone else noticed this and any idea why?
I am using Gamblin and Winsor Newton brands. Twenty years ago I used Winsor Newton and Winton.
Please share how do you keep your paints fresh and usable for a longer period of time.
There are a few things I do to keep my oils from drying fast. Use a shallow plastic container the size of your palette paper and place moist sponges on the bottom, once you add your palette paper or wax paper on top the paints will stay wet longer. Try and cover your paints up (air tight is the best) in your container when not using them. If your roommates/spouse doesn't mind, store your palette in the refrigerator. I keep a mini fridge in my studio for palette storage. The last technique is to add a drop of mineral sprits to the top of each color or a drop of water if it is water based.
Hope this helped or gave you some ideas!
press and seal wrap. and put your pallet in the frig.
Because of the $preciousnes$ of good oil paint, I simply use it very sparingly - putting out only what I might use within a two day period. I have heard people say you can immerse your oils in water, too (?!), but I am concerned with too much cold changing the chemistry of them . . . I always fret if there is a lot of color left over, and they do of course oxidize even over a 2-day period. Conservation is my solution.
Regarding my question posted on 8/20/14, on keeping paints alive longer, this is what I gathered from my research:
As most of us know by now you can seal them with plastic wrap and refrigerate or freeze them. I use inexpensive white plastic ice trays as my holding tray for extra paints and put them in a large Zip-Lock bag. I found this method worked pretty well, but my paints did change texture after a month or so.
So I will trying oil of clove as a retarder. Of what I read years back, and learned from the rep at Gamblin paints, it should help. This is what he shared with me regarding clove oil:
"Clove oil retards the drying time of the oil by evaporating into the airspace
inside the covered palette. This concentration of evaporated clove oil makes it
more difficult for the oil paint to borrow oxygen molecules out of the air
(oxidation=drying). The once the palette is opened, the clove oil escapes and the paint used should dry at its usual rate on the canvas."
Finding clove oil was not easy... it used to be found in old-style pharmacies, but is rarely found in CVS- type pharmacies. I did find it on Amazon for a reasonable price. I will be trying the clove oil this week and will post my results.