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Flat Figures Painters Forum => Techniques => Topic started by: Guynemer on March 08, 2020, 09:02:17 PM

Title: Priming for oils
Post by: Guynemer on March 08, 2020, 09:02:17 PM
Hello Everyone!
It's been a long time since I posted here, years in fact.  But, I have been painting flats. Looking forwards to catching up with you all. To keep a long story short (for now), I am wanting to try oils and ditch acrylics for good. But first, a few beginner questions. If it makes a difference, is it better to use enamel or acrylic paint for the white primer? And, is it beneficial or necessary for me to undercoat the figure in basic colours using enamels or acrylics, or can I just paint with oils straight onto the white?
Thanks in advance!
Title: Re: Priming for oils
Post by: Brian on March 09, 2020, 06:52:45 AM

The short answer is Yes, I use Winsor and Newton  Galeria white acrylic, leave over night to dry and oil straight on the white.   
Title: Re: Priming for oils
Post by: Ed Humphreys on March 09, 2020, 01:38:41 PM
Personally. I don't feel the need for underpainting in most colours. The covering power of the oils seems to be enough. The only exceptions are browns and greens, where oils on their own don't seem to give an even coverage
Title: Re: Priming for oils
Post by: Jean_Paul on March 09, 2020, 02:29:05 PM
I use Humbrol old generation for priming (airbrush) my flat. It's difficult to find it, also i have not much choice ... In stock, i have Surface Grey and Sand. It's not a problem because "the covering power of oils" is enough ...
Title: Re: Priming for oils
Post by: marko on March 09, 2020, 04:55:03 PM
I suspect you are going to find it is really a matter of taste as there are good examples of stunning painters using most of the examples you note. 

Personally I like a white acrylic base layer and undercoat in acrylics which means I can use oils sparingly though I am not a stunning painter.  I also at times paint directly on the white with oils though it will generally take at least two layers of oils to cover.  I have read some painters saying the underlying white shines through providing some brightness as well though I do not find this.   (One of the pluses with acrylic as a base is if I decide to start over, the underlying acrylics come off quite easily with Oven Cleaner.)

You will find if you research a bit is there are great examples of each of these approaches you describe below.  I have spoken to a couple of excellent painters that also use very basic paints with amazing results which also tells me that to the truly talented the medium does not matter too much - they adapt to the medium.

Personally I would suggest an acrylic undercoat - I like white, I have read grey and black as well.  Then perhaps experiment a bit and see what works for you.  If one is more patient than myself multiple layers of oils or even glazes of oils on a straight white undercoat work just fine.  I find it easier to block in the color in acrylics and then cover in oils. 

Regardless there is no right answer just find what you are comfortable with.

mark  8)

Title: Re: Priming for oils
Post by: Guynemer on April 03, 2020, 10:35:52 AM
Thank you all so much! This has been a great help. I finally got round to painting my first serious attempt with oils recently, over an acrylic basecoat this time round. I’ll post the results soon.